Concilium Bulletin April 2021
Freetown Curia: Fr. Samuel Philippson Moore SM has been appointed Spiritual Director of Stella Maris Curia. The Acies was planned for 28th March.
Abuja Senatus: At the January meeting it was announced that for the Centenary Curiae will celebrate in June, Comitia in July, Regiae in August with the grand finale in September. A Curia in Lafia reported being effected by the herdsmen/farmers crisis.
Otukpo Regia had 478 lapsed returned, 46 marriages rectified and 490 conversions including 17 Muslims. It was possible to hold some annual reunions in December.
Ibadan Senatus: In April the secretary reported that all councils and praesidia have resumed except those in the University of Ibadan as new cases of Covid 19 were recorded there. A Curia in Oke-ado reported that a recent convert has joined the Legion. A praesidium reported four marriages rectified.
Lagos Regia: The Regia meeting resumed in February - exactly one year since the previous meeting. First terms of the president, vice-president and treasurer expired in May 2020 and of the secretary in December.
Enugu Senatus: Following Lockdown from April to September 2020, meetings of the Senatus resumed in October 2020.
Abakaliki Regia is comprised by 19 Comitia, 6 senior Curiae, 12 senior praesidia and 1 junior Curia with a total strength of 24, 499 senior legionaries, made up of 19,873 plus 4,576 probationers and has 2,120 auxiliary members among whom 322 are adjutorians. It also has 100 junior Curiae with a total number of 17,843 junior legionaries. 7,956 adults were prepared for Baptism, 2,216 candidates for First Holy Communion and 2,739 for Confirmation.811 marriages were solemnized, 457 lapsed Catholics were brought back to the sacraments.
Onitsha Regia: Our Lady Queen of Apostles Curia Odoakpu is composed of 13 senior praesidia with 189 members, 1 junior Curia of 8 praesidia and 10 College praesidia at Christ the King College. 9 couples were helped to marry in the Church, 51 Adults were helped to receive Baptism, 105 persons were prepared for first Holy Communion, 6 lapsed Catholics were helped to return to faith and 3 family disputes were resolved.
Jos Regia: Shendam Hausa speaking Comitium has 1,850 members, 300 of whom are probationers. They recruited 295 new members, prepared 1,102 for Baptism, 536 for Confirmation, 2,984 for First Communion, 48 returned to the faith, 32 marriages were regularised in Church.
Ikot Ekpene Regia: Port Harcourt Comitium with 1,741 legionaries reported 10 sick patients received the Sacrament of the sick, 164 Catechumens prepared for Holy Communion and 82 Catechumens received Sacrament of Baptism. 2 Marriages were blessed, 6 lapsed Catholics returned to the Faith, 1 praesidium and 2 Curiae were established.
South Sudan: Sister Christine Kinamborisa, Secretary of Yambio Curia visited the Senatus of Uganda in the December 2020 meeting. She reported that the Curia has 18 Praesidia. They meet every last Saturday of the month at 9.00am. Their average attendance is 54 members. One of their big challenges is lack of the handbook in their local language. Sr. Christine visited our youth praesidium “Gate of Heaven” and a College Curia. She attended the Reunion with the legionaries and joined us in one of the masses for the novena to pray for end of the Covid 19 Pandemic. Two legionaries from Uganda were to visit South Sudan in January 2021, but it was not possible due to the effects of Covid 19. The visit is now planned for May.
Senatus of Uganda: Extension is ongoing through Uganda but for the Centenary of the Legion they are concentrating on extension in Soroti Diocese and in the Northern Region. They are praying to Venerable Edel Quinn to help them in this project.
Kabale Regia with 56,840 active, 11,155 probationers, 715 praetorians and 5,103 auxiliaries members has 29 Comitia, 5 Curiae and 14 praesidia attached. The Regia recently set up two new Comitia. The works undertaken include home and hospital visitation, street and market contact work, prison visitation and teaching catechism. They reported 1,168 infants and 28 adults, including 7 prisoners were baptised, 4,947 children were prepared for Fist Communion and 366 for Confirmation, 6 Muslims, 53 Pentecostals and 309 Protestants were prepared for Baptism, 692 marriages were blessed in Church, 3,408 adults returned to the sacraments, 543 received the sacrament of the sick, 563 joined lay apostolate groups and 8 legionaries became catechists.
Senatus of Kenya: Plans are underway for the annual Mass at Venerable Edel Quinn’s grave. In January 60 legionaries attended the monthly prayers at the graveside. The new Regia at Bungoma was inaugurated on 10th February. Umoja Curia has 15 senior praesidia and one junior Curia attached. A praesidium attached to Senatus has 9 active and 10 auxiliary members. Works undertaken include hospital visitation contact work in Uhuru Park, at bus stops and encouraging street traders to visit the Adoration Chapel. In his Allocutio Fr. Boniface reminded legionaries that every Legion work assignment was an appointment with Our Lady.
Dar-es-Salaam Regia: The Regia has visited a number of distant councils which are attached to Concilium. In some areas there are large numbers of legionaries and a number of training sessions have been arranged.
Rombo Comitium: no news since last report
Hai Moshi Comitium: Works reported on include home and hospital visitation, encouraging couples to marry in Church and preparing adults and children for the Sacraments. Various Acies ceremonies were help in later months of 2020 when some Covid-19 restrictions were eased.
Songea Comitium has set up a number of new Curiae and the legion in this area is continuing to grow.
Maula Senatus: During 2020 the Senatus held 9 Senatus meetings. A praesidium of 11 members do hospital visitation, visit bereaved families, visit Maula prison where they hope to set up a praesidium among the female prisoners. A number of members were encouraged to become auxiliary members as they are not regular at the weekly praesidium meeting. The Senatus and attached councils are busy visiting their attached councils encouraging them to continue in their apostolate following the Covid–19. They have a comprehensive programme of works for the year and their Centenary celebrations will take place in October.
Lusaka Regia: In January stricter measures were introduced. The Dioceses of Lusaka has stopped all Legion meetings except for Regia officers who can still meet. Elections due to be held in February are postponed until further notice. This development prompted the Regia to open a WhatsApp group to say connected to attached councils. Members are encouraged to pray the legion prayers on the same day and time as their usual legion meeting. Preparations for the Centenary celebrations are ongoing. The activity will centre around the Cathedrals in each Diocese. A vigil mass will be held a day before the main event. The main activities are entertainment, legionary formation, and prayer especially the Mass. Members are encouraged to compose songs on the Legion of Mary and Mary herself. These will be used in the celebrations. Talks with local radio and TV stations are ongoing. Lumen TV Zambia (the national Catholic TV station) has agreed to run a 13 series program on the Legion of Mary. The Centenary Mass will also be broadcast on Lumen TV.
Kasama Regia: The Regia had a meeting with the officers of Lusaka Regia to plan the Centenary celebrations in each Diocese. The emphasis is on each legionary having an opportunity to mark the Centenary at a minimum cost. In some distant places they may have a Mass at Curia or Comitium level to ensure that all the legionaries are part of the celebrations.
Madrid Senatus: The Senatus Officers have been extremely busy keeping in contact with their attached Councils and directly affiliated praesidia. On 6th March the Senatus launched its YouTube Channel. The Acies was held on this channel. Street contact work is undertaken in the city including the Red light district. University students are contacted on Campus. Some new praesidia have been set up. One large praesidium divided giving some of the best legionaries to new praesidium.
Rome Senatus: The Senatus keeps in touch with its attached Councils by letter from the President and Allocutio every month. Two Curiae with 7 and 10 Praesidia respectively reported recently. All meetings are in lockdown but the members keep in touch with contacts and Praesidia virtually by praying, talks and Acies ceremony. Monsignor La Rosa in his Allocutio encouraged legionaries to work and pray for the dedication of this year of St. Joseph.
Milan Regia: Milan is the most affected area in Italy. The legionaries are missing their meetings for more than a year. As part of WhatsApp group they are keeping in touch and leading the Rosary in Church. In Turin there are two praesidia. One of these was set up in recent months.
Pavia Curia is very restricted. Some of the legionaries give Catechism classes at work.
In Asti Curia the newest praesidium lost four of its legionaries including the oldest legionary in the Curia. Once a month the legionaries gather at the Sanctuary with the Curia Spiritual Director to pray the Rosary and Legion prayers. In Genoa the legionaries gather once a month at Mass after which they say the Rosary and attend adoration.
Malta Regia: “Can we be saints” by Frank Duff is now being translated and printed. A copy will be given to each legionary as a souvenir of the Centenary. The logo for the Centenary is now on their headed paper. The monthly Regia meetings are taking place but with reduced attendance. One praesidium visits clubs, schools, and hospitals and does street contact.
Mother and Teacher Curia reported much contact with couples experiencing marriage difficulties. One adult was prepared for baptism and three were prepared for confirmation.
Mother of the Good Shepherd Curia reported many good contacts made in the course of home visitation.
Our Lady of the Eucharist Curia reported much visitation to homes where parents are concerned about their children.
In Queen of Peace Curia much contact work is done at a Hub where the young and the not so young meet. The rosary is recited at a Taxi stand where drivers join in. Contact work is also done at different sea ports.
In Malta Junior Curia two of the Intermediate Praesidia transferred to the senior ranks.
Gozo Comitium: Statue visitation, clinics, hospital, Catechism and language classes are amongst the works being done. Follow up visits are being made to a person who returned to the Sacraments after 25 years. A prayer meeting is held monthly to promote the Cause of the Servant of God, Frank Duff.
Countries under the Caretakership of Malta Regia: Fr Emanuel Cuttajar, a Maltese Priest who has served in Albania attended the Regia meeting. He reported that Shkoder Comitium is meeting regularly. The legionaries very much appreciate the visits of Malta Regia to the Comitium. He asked for prayers for three Bishops in Albania who are recovering from Covid 19.
Nicosia and Limassol praesidia hold virtual weekly meetings. Paphos praesidium continues to struggle with membership but the Parish Priest continues to support them in their efforts with some success. Acies ceremonies were held virtually in Nicosia on 25th of March and in Paphos on March 21st.
IRISH PROVINCIAL REPORT
Diocese of Down and Connor: Immaculata meetings in March and April were held by Zoom. The Spiritual Director, Fr. Martin Graham, was welcomed to both meetings. The Acies was held on the 22nd March, via the Cathedral website with approximately 360 people joining in. The Legion monthly talk was on Prayer and in February the talk was on Lent. The Edel Quinn Mass is due to take place on the 15th May. The Centenary Mass for the Legion will be celebrated in September and monthly events will continue up to September 2022.
Navan: The Rosary continues to be recited weekly on Zoom and members of all praesidia are invited to participate. The Acies took place on Palm Sunday 28th March via webcam with both Mullingar and Trim Curiae joining in with the Comitium.
Derry: The Comitium Spiritual Director, Fr. Thomas Canning has sent the Concilium a list of five special Masses which he plans to celebrate in St. Theresa’s church, Sion Mills, during the year for the Centenary.
Clogher: The Acies is scheduled for Sunday 25th April. Legionaries recite the Rosary and Legion prayers in the church after Saturday evening Mass. Members are involved in church duties. One legionary in the Curia has been doing indoor duty in Regina Hostel.
Drogheda: One Member of the Curia leads the Rosary via Zoom each week and many members log in when possible. A WhatsApp group for the purpose of communicating within the Curia has been set up. The Rosary at the Grotto each week is ongoing at St Peter’s Church. One member is in a Nursing Home and members visit her and recite the Rosary and Legion Prayers with her since the restrictions were eased slightly.
Dundalk: Legionaries and their auxiliaries in one praesidium are making a novena to Edel Quinn.
Bethlehem Curia reported that a praesidium is keeping in touch with two people in the parish who are preparing for baptism. Two legionaries are also in touch with the members of the Latino community via Zoom and English classes take place online six days a week. Some members participated in and led the weekly online Handbook Study for Dublin Curiae. The Acies ceremony for Bethlehem, Veneranda and Porta Coeli Curiae took place in St Francis Xavier Church and members participated via online.
Veneranda Curia reported a legionary leads the recitation of the Rosary in St Joseph’s Church Berkeley Road each morning, with approximately 8 parishioners joining in online. The Rosary is also recited at Our Lady’s Grotto in Finglas and the junior praesidium holds their weekly meetings on Zoom. Members of the Maria Legionis journal praesidium work on their accounts and the Irish praesidium are working on the Frank Duff library. One member works at the Regina Coeli hostel. Legionaries in one parish sell religious magazines and papers. Some members make efforts to keep in touch with the elderly living alone. On three streets in a parish, journals were put in the letterbox of parishioners – one gentleman came out to thank the legionaries and told them that his grandfather was a legionary.
NORTH AMERICA, CANADA & WEST INDIES
New York Senatus: Attempts to restart the Senatus Meeting and recent minutes received were March 2021, with 15, included 2 Senatus Officers and 3 correspondents. Praesidium Regina Mundi, Manhattan, gave report; they have ten members and five probationers. Works include a Book barrow in front of a city church and rosaries, miraculous medals and prayer cards, particularly the prayer to St Joseph, were distributed to passers-by. Many contacts took place. People were invited to church and a Hindu woman is interested in becoming a Catholic. Two Legionaries in RCIA programme teach newcomers to the Church. 15 subway Rosaries were prayed in Times Square. A Pastor led 13 rosary rallies, some in the main shopping area. Legionaries on book barrow duty invited people to church on Ash Wednesday. About 350 people took Ashes. A new Rosary Confraternity is being formed, 5 have joined already.
Philadelphia Senatus: Mother of Mercy praesidium in a downtown church, with 6 active and 4 auxiliary members; in pre-Covid times, did visits to hospitals, nursing homes and evangelised outside on the sidewalk, sharing Holy Ashes with passers-by. Mater Dolorosa Curia gained a new praesidium. They help in a homeless shelter. Norristown Comitium has 10 senior and 2 junior praesidia and two Curiae attached. The Seminary praesidium has 8 active and 14 auxiliary members. They still are able to conduct catechism classes and Bible study in catholic schools and bring Holy Communion to residents in a nursing home. Holy Family Curia with 21 adult and 20 junior members are keeping in touch by social media. One work continuing is staffing the Maria Legionis office. Metuchen Comitium has 8 praesidia with 51 active and 512 auxiliary members and 5 Curiae attached.
Chicago Senatus: Our Lady of Knock Praesidium has 5 active and 150 auxiliary members. They assisted with 50 participants at Our Lady of Guadalupe Mass, as greeters and ushers. They made phone calls to 60 residents of a nursing home, reading and praying with them. Green Bay Curia, with 4 widely-spread praesidia, not able to meet for over a year, use Zoom calls as a means of communication. The Hispanic Comitium, with 11 praesidia and two Curiae attached had some meetings by Zoom to maintain contact during the lockdown. The Korean Comitium, have done likewise, during this time. Rockford Curia held a virtual Legion Congress in November also with 18 members in person. Our Lady of the Rosary praesidium with 9 members shared miraculous medals with contacts at a Gay Pride Parade.
Boston Senatus: members are still unable to meet but prepared a quarterly Senatus Bulletin- October to December 2020 -containing reports from 4 attached praesidia, 3 attached Comitia and 6 attached Curiae. A Vietnamese praesidium had 3 people received into the Church in May 2020. All praesidia have remained faithful to Legion Tessera Prayers and Rosary either online, privately or outdoors. Some recent works included Senatus Sunday Rosary Confraternity, Divine Mercy, Handbook and Bible Study, Confraternity of Christian Doctrine and Marriage Counselling all online. Phone calls have replaced home visits. One Curia president sends all members a monthly Curia newsletter which includes Allocutios from Concilium and Curia. Another Curia uses Catholic Radio to promote prayer. One Comitium is planning its Centenary celebration and sends periodic letters to its 3 prison praesidia via the Chaplain. When restrictions permitted in October, outdoor rosaries featured.
St. Louis Senatus: Home to home visitation, visits to hospitals, nursing homes and prison are reported. Holy Communion is brought to the housebound and those ill are contacted by telephone. They had a Fatima Public Rosary Rally held just before the Pandemic They welcome families into the Parish. Auxiliaries are contacted and recruited also. They work with RCIA course. They organise praying for vocations, and conversions. They promote junior praesidia. Legionaries reach out to atheists and offer support. Eucharistic Adoration is promoted.
Arlington Regia: Hold meetings in person and online simultaneously. Their Centenary plans include a Centenary Mass on 2nd October 2021. They held their Acies in person. In January their retreat was restricted to 35 attending. Depending on local restrictions, works included phone calls to parishioners to encourage a return to Mass, public rosary in a cemetery, Fatima statues visits outside homes. Juniors make Rosary beads. 22 Legionaries and 2 priests participated in a Congress.
Cincinnati Senatus: They have met monthly in person with 11 – 13 officers attending from their 7 attached praesidia. Two praesidia and most councils relayed news on how they coped during pandemic. A praesidium of 8 active members and 200 auxiliaries sent letters to nursing homes, organised a virtual True Devotion to Mary Study group and arranged for the Sacrament of the Sick for 2 people. Some attached councils alternated from virtual to in-person meetings while others unable to meet at all, plan to regroup now. Some gained Spiritual Directors, including Fr. John Orr being appointed for Knoxville Curia. They held a virtual Reunion in December and scheduled their Acies for April. They plan a Legion Congress for August and Centenary Mass for mid-September 2021.
Houston Senatus: Houston Senatus held their first meeting this year in March. A new praesidium, Our Lady of Mount Carmel at St Pius X Parish was recently affiliated to New Orleans Regia. In North West Curia, they wrote to 8 nursing homes gaining approval to visit 5 and conducting activities consistent with Covid-19 guidelines by praying the Rosary outside with some residents.
New Mexico: North Curia Raton is planning to have a Mass and reception the last weekend of September to celebrate 90 years of the first USA praesidium started on 27th November of 1931 at St. Joseph Church, Raton, New Mexico. The Korean Curia in Houston held a virtual Annual Reunion in December. The president of Baton Rouge Curia, Br. Anh Dung Joseph “Zoom” Nguyen, died in February, RIP. He was a member of the Legion for over 60 years.
Los Angeles Senatus: They meet monthly on Zoom. Three first term officerships expire this year. Acies was partly virtual and in person according to restrictions. A virtual Retreat – “Becoming Friends of the Cross” was also provided.
San Francisco Senatus continue to meet online each month and remain connected with all attached councils. During the pandemic, attached praesidia remain faithful to Legion Prayers either via Zoom or telephone. Curia reunions and Lenten retreats were mainly online. Outdoor or virtual Enthronement of Sacred Heart, pilgrim statue where dioceses permits, praying with bereaved, sending cards to shut-ins and rosary making by juniors featured. Virtual patrician meetings featured for praesidia and 5 attached councils. One praesidium distributes 730 rosaries this year. Another praesidium uses telephone to propagate EWTN, First Friday Eucharistic Adoration, True Devotion to Mary, Rosary and Divine mercy recitals, Handbook, Confraternity of Christian Doctrine and Bible study. Senatus and North Utah Curia are hosting workshops on Consecration to St. Joseph.
Miami Regia: are unable to meet but are in touch with their correspondent. Their former Spiritual Director Fr. Richard Souliere (former Legion Envoy to Mexico) died in December. The Regia contributed to his obituary done by the Archdiocese; they acknowledged his dedicated support to the Legion who helped him promote Brown Scapular devotion in 80 parishes.
The Senatus of Toronto celebrated their 1000th meeting in January, 2021. There were 402 Zoom participants in a virtual Annual General Reunion held in December from as far away as, Manitoba, Maritimes and all places in between. It was most enjoyable, with actives, juniors, auxiliaries and 12 Spiritual Directors included. It was reported that a Comitium exists in a Korean parish which included two other Curiae. All are keeping in touch by social media. Niagara Curia had a legionary’s non-Catholic sister converting. A man joined the Legion by phone and in-person contacts. A praesidium visiting a cemetery each day for the month of November evangelised other visitors about praying for the souls in Purgatory.
Montreal Senatus: has online meetings, comprising Legion prayers, spiritual reading, Allocutio, since December. Tribute was paid to Fr. Senez their outgoing Spiritual Director who had first joined the Legion as a 17-year-old student. With increase in Covid restrictions, their new Spiritual Director, Fr. Paradis led special prayer events for Feasts of Our Lady and World Day of the Sick; these were either online or with limited numbers in-person. He suggested that the 12-week Handbook Study idea was a gift to help Legionaries prepare for the Centenary. The Centenary year, coinciding with year of St Joseph, is a Grace to every Legionary. He urged prayers to the Holy Spirit for the missionary activity of the Church and for a rediscovery of the value of individual Confession.
Vancouver Comitium: Virtual Meetings of Comitium held for January and February 2021. Two praesidia of 7 and 13 active members cited pre-pandemic works such as circulating 3 Pilgrim Statues, visiting 4 local hospitals, revitalising a weak praesidium by recruiting 2 new members and also new auxiliaries. During pandemic, both started virtual meetings so as to continue Legion prayers, handbook study and Allocutio. An attached Curia with 9 attached praesidia began weekly Zoom meetings in December. They now regularly connect with active and auxiliary members by phoning and text message. They lead prayers for priests, the sick, the deceased and those who fight Covid-19 in the hospital. Legionaries in another Curia supported evangelisation on Zoom organised by a parish. This Curia reported the dissolution of a praesidium due to their inability to accept the Handbook guidance on “The Legion Prayers Invariable.”
Edmonton Comitium: They meet monthly on Zoom and are joined by the distant Calgary Curia. 90% of praesidia have reconnected virtually for Legion prayers and Handbook study. They have arranged a Centenary Mass with the Archdiocese. They aim to relay news from Concilium to each Legionary. The Comitium joined by 150 auxiliaries held an online Acies. Calgary Curia had a limited in-person Acies of 110 people while others were online.
Senatus of Santo Domingo: In December they met in-person with good participation. At that meeting they informed the officers present about the need to assess the effects of the pandemic on Legion groups and councils. This year the Senatus will have a spiritual talk instead of a retreat which will be broadcast on the radio. Likewise, the celebration of the Acies will be broadcast on the radio, inviting all legionaries to tune in to this medium. They will prepare to celebrate the 75 years of the Legion of Mary in their country and the Centenary of the founding of the Legion.
Regia of Trinidad and Tobago: On account of the Corona Virus, the correspondent had little to report, just a letter from the Regia in January 2021 and another in March, thanking her for advice given and telling of improving conditions and churches opening up. Some Curiae were having the Acies in church. They were very pleased to receive the Frank Duff pull up banner and will share it with attached councils.