Concilium Bulletin January 2022
Douala Senatus: Some marvellous reports on the Centenary celebrations which were held right through the country. Regia Bertoua organised 2 marches, the first was 5 km and the second march was 10 km long, handing out rosary beads, promoting the Legion with a book barrow, followed in the evening by hymns, confession and adoration. The following day a cultural evening was organised with traditional dances, the signing of the centenary hymn, sketches and even a Miss Centenary pageant. The Pontifical Mass on 11th September included the consecration of legionaries, baptisms, confirmations and weddings. All councils organised similar events, including congresses, Exploratio Dominicalis. Where possible a Centenary Mass was celebrated in the parish with the display of the Centenary logo. They also included the 33-day preparation of consecration and when possible, in conjunction with the rest of the world. The Rosary was recited in the highways and bye-ways with a statue of Our Lady and the display of the Centenary logo. From June to October over 200 converts were reported on. Numerous new praesidia and some new Curiae are in the process of being set up.
CHAD (under the caretakership of the Cameroon)
A message was received from a Spiritual Director, Father Victor Sabour, asking about the possibility of a Regia in Moundou. The details were passed on to Douala to follow this up and to request further details on the strength of the Legion in Moundou and the other councils. Father also gave an account of their closing ceremony with 2 bishops, 12 priests and 1,346 legionaries attending from 8 dioceses. He also said that Covid had very little effect in the country.
Lomé Senatus: Some new praesidia were established. The reports on the apostolate are as good as ever: home, hospital and visitation of the orphanages, crowd contact and giving catechesis classes. The juniors are organised to help with the recitation of the Rosary, Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament and bible study. The Comitium in Kpalime mentions the setting up of 2 new Curiae as well as 2 new praesidia of which 1 for juniors. Kara Regia has 2 Comitia, 15 Curiae and 20 attached praesidia.
Conakry (under caretakership of Togo)
The Comitium has 5 Curiae and 6 attached praesidia with 1,016 active and 305 auxiliary members. Home, hospital and prison visitation as well as visiting drug ghettos, talking to children living rough and giving catechesis classes are mentioned in the report. Preparations are being made to have a congress.
Brazzaville: Visitation of attached councils and praesidia is undertaken monthly and a brief report given at the Senatus meeting. Our Lady of the Trinity Comitium has 1,200 active members who undertake works of teaching catechism, outreach to couples and the lapsed, and visitation of the sick. Between June and September, visitation took place to three of their Curiae and four praesidia. The three Comitia in the north of the country are part of the new archdiocese of Owando which was established by Pope Francis in 2020.
Regia Maria Auxiliadora Malabo: A new Curia “Virgen de las Virgenes” with 6 praesidia attached was set up in September 2021. All officerships including that of the Spiritual Director are filled. There were elections for the Officers of the Regia in July 2021. All officerships were filled in that case too. The new secretary has been sick, therefore there is a delay with the minutes but the correspondent hopes that the problem will soon be resolved.
Mexico City Senatus: Meetings are not yet allowed in Mexico City. The attached Regia of Acapulco with 8 Comitia, 20 Curiae and 18 praesidia reported. In Leon 2 new junior praesidia were set up and 6 praesidia of young people in an indigenous community in Morelia. The Senatus made contact with the bishop of the diocese of Texcoco and the Archbishop of Tulancingo. Both gave consent for the establishment of the Legion in their respective dioceses. A praesidium was set up in Texcoco in November 2021 and there are arrangements to set up the Legion in the Archdiocese of Tulancingo soon.
Merida Senatus: The Senatus has commenced meeting in person. The Comitium Causa de Nuestra Alegría set up four new praesidia since the last report. 10 couples regularised their marriage, 29 adults and 20 children were baptised and 122 received the sacrament of the sick. In the November Senatus meeting it was reported from Tuxtla Gutierrez that a child was cured of cancer through the intercession of Frank Duff. María Immaculada Comitium has 25 Curiae and 15 praesidia affiliated, one of which is in the state prison. Home visitation is carried out extensively. Forty-nine homes accepted the Enthronement of their homes to the Sacred Heart. Legionaries lead the Rosary and prayers at wakes.
Guadalajara Regia: The Regia meets in person although numbers have to be reduced. Legionaries who are Ministers of the Eucharist visit the sick and bring the Eucharist to those who request it. Persons who have been away from the practice of the faith for a long time are encouraged to return and some of them have done so including 10 young persons. The annual retreat which was organised in September had an attendance of 200 approximately.
Monterrey Regia: The Regia meets every month in person but there are attached Curiae which still do not meet. Legionaries work with the families of the deceased, particularly helping them with the spiritual aspect of the wakes and burial. One sister gives talks to married couples by virtual method. Legionaries try in a special way to make contact with the young people on street contact work. The Centenary events were well attended by all legionaries.
Durango Regia: The attached Comitium of Mazatlán, while it also has been affected by Covid, expressed enthusiasm for the future.
Hermosillo Regia: many of the meetings including the Regia meeting is held by virtual method. However, they are keeping in contact with attached councils and praesidia. The attached councils continue to work in person or virtually. They do whatever is possible within the Covid restrictions. They help in the work of their parishes, sanitizing, cleaning etc. others teach catechism. They take care of the sick and in particular they help with the wakes and funerals.
Senatus de Tegucigalpa: Since October the Senatus is meeting in person but with very low attendance, communication with attached councils is very poor due to long periods of no meetings. A number of praesidia continue to meet and do work but the councils seem to have problems. Due to low attendance elections due have not been carried out. They celebrated the annual reunion in open air, the occasion served to unite and raise the spirits of all who attended.
Senatus: There is good communication between the Senatus and the Concilium. Correspondence is up to date. Elections were held successfully for the four Senatus officer posts in November.
Regia of Managua: In December some of the praesidia returned to meetings in person. The Regia organised a very successful dawn Rosary on 4th December. They continue to broadcast a Legion of Mary radio programme every Saturday.
Regia: In August the Regia returned to meeting in person but since then the minutes have not been forwarded to the correspondent. The president of the Regia was in touch by WhatsApp and promised to send the outstanding minutes after the January meeting. Notice of election for president has been given for January. Each month they receive the Concilium bulletin and the letter from the correspondent.
A number of Curiae in Cuba ceased to function during Covid. They get a letter from Concilium every month but there has been no communication from Cuba. However, Sr. Christina Wallace of South Atlanta Curia in the U.S, who did extension work in Cuba has contact with a number of legionaries and bishops, wrote to Concilium with the news that the Bishop of the diocese of Cienfuegos has suggested to the legionaries that they should try to return to the meetings and slowly get back to normal. Sr. Wallace said she may be able to return to Cuba for a short visit during the Christmas period.
IRISH PROVINCIAL COUNCILS
Dromore: The attached North Dromore Curia has been emailed about the situation there but no response has been received so far. The praesidium in Burren did not stop all. Navan: Four praesidia continue to meet and do some street contact and public Rosaries. A Comitium meeting was planned for 19th January and they will have had two officers meetings before then. Diocese of Down & Connor: Immaculata: The Legion Centenary Mass was celebrated by Bishop Treanor on 7th September. The homily on the Legion was given by Rev. Deacon Gregg. About 1,300 people logged in via the Church Webcam. There was a small physical attendance in the church, due to Covid. The Frank Duff Anniversary Mass was held on six November in St. Mary’s Chapel. A few praesidia are meeting physically. Recitation of public Rosaries and some home visitation is taking place under the guidance of the parish priest. Six new members have been recruited by two praesidia At the December Comitium meeting it was reported that one praesidium has increased its membership from 2 to 9. Down Curia has been holding their monthly meetings in De La Salle House from August 2021. Due to restrictions, only 10 are in attendance.
Leitrim: No meetings have been held yet as members have difficulty in getting accommodation in parishes. The Curia officers keep in touch via a Whatsapp group. They are aiming to have meetings resume from March.
Clogher: One legionary in the Curia has helped with indoor duty in Regina Coeli Hostel.
Clonmacnoise: The praesidia in the Curia are meeting since September 2021. On 25th March legionaries undertook the Acies in their homes all at the same time going through the agenda. For the Centenary, Mass was celebrated in Mount Temple church and Fr. Joe McGrath gave a lovely homily on Frank Duff. He presented the First Communion and Confirmation classes with miraculous medals and leaflets which were supplied by the legionaries. Works include keeping in touch by phone with the people they used to visit. They delivered Miraculous Medals to five primary schools in Athlone for the First Holy Communion and Confirmation classes.
Archdiocese of Armagh:
Armagh: All praesidia took part in the Rosary proposed by the Concilium last year and did a Rosary novena in their parishes leading up to 7th September. The praesidium in Keady have held Zoom meetings since the start of the Pandemic. Armagh praesidium holds meetings in the usual way as they are fortunate to have a large room to meet in, but their work is limited. They gave Rosaries to Confirmation classes in the schools and spoke to them about Our Lady and the Rosary. They have been invited into another school to give miraculous medals to the First Communion class. The other praesidia have not been able to hold meetings yet but the Curia keeps in touch with them. Curia meetings are taking place with a limited attendance.
Drogheda: Curia meetings have taken place since September 2021. All praesidia in the Curia are meeting except one which holds its meetings in Mosney where no visitors are allowed. A new praesidium was started in Kilsaran. The Centenary Mass was held in St. Peter’s parish on 5 September with approximately 150 in attendance. The Chief Celebrant was Canon Eugene Sweeney. Fr. John Hogan gave a lovely homily on Frank Duff and the early years of the Legion. The ceremony at the grave of former Envoy, Kathleen Allen, on Sunday 17 October had 15 legionaries in attendance. An extension drive in Collon and a book barrow in Scotch Hall shopping Centre were reported on. Two annual reports were presented at the October and November meetings, one with 7 members and 35 auxiliaries and the other with 5 members and 52 auxiliaries. Prior to lockdown works included street contact, visiting auxiliaries, young families, the housebound and nursing homes. Baptismal Certificates were delivered to seven families of new babies which included a miraculous medal, Rosary and Rosary leaflet and a small prayer books for children.
Dundalk: Only one praesidium is meeting at present. Three probationers are due to take the Promise. They keep in touch with their auxiliaries and arranged transport to take them to Mass and Confession. They hope to start a children’s Rosary shortly.
Bethlehem Curia is back holding meetings since October. Praesidia are presenting two annual reports: 2019/20 and 2020/21. A praesidium runs a men’s club which hasn’t met since April 2020 but they hope to re-open it soon. Members have kept in touch with the men during lockdown. When open, the club meets twice weekly where Rosary and Legion prayers are recited. First Friday Mass is also organised where confessions are made available. Another praesidium has 6 full members and 5 probationers. Works include visitation to a nursing home and a hostel for the homeless; public Rosary at the Spire; 1st Saturday Rosary at the Rotunda Hospital. Two praesidia have closed. Curia organised annual Frank Duff Mass in the Pro-Cathedral in November and are planning Masses in each of the parishes to celebrate the Centenary.
Consolata Curia is back holding meetings since October. Praesidia are presenting two annual reports: 2019/20 and 2020/21. The Curia organised an annual retreat led by Fr. John Mockler in November which 25 legionaries attended. They have restarted their quarterly gathering for Adoration. Their spiritual director Fr. Keegan led a Holy Hour of Adoration on New Year’s Eve to pray for new members and God’s blessing on all the legionaries and their endeavours. A praesidium was asked by their parish priest to lead the Rosary on webcam every day at 3pm during October. Over 200 Rosary beads and leaflets were left beside Our Lady’s statue and taken by parishioners in order to join in this Rosary. Our Lady of Fatima pilgrim statue is taken to homes who request it. Blessing of homes by a priest is organised and also enrolment in the miraculous medal. Street and park contact continued during Covid and prayer packs were offered. During Covid two praesidia continued Nursing Home visitation where permitted. One praesidium prayed the Rosary every hour from 9.30 am to 9.30pm on the feast of Our Lady of Lourdes.
Exaltata Curia has not returned to meetings. The Spiritual Director Fr. Carroll is ill and is not expected to continue in this role. Three praesidia are attached to the hostels. These praesidia have continued to meet and work throughout the entire period of the pandemic. One praesidium in Hartstown meets every week and work consists of attendance at a Holy Hour once a week. Another praesidium, although not holding meetings, organises a weekly public rosary with an attendance of between 4 and 15. Copies of Maria Legionis have also been delivered.
Porta Coeli Curia is back holding meetings since October. Four attached praesidia do street contact in Donaghmede Shopping Centre. One member brings Holy Communion to a housebound friend. Legionaries meet virtually to pray the Rosary and Legion prayers.
Presentata Curia is back holding meetings since October. All praesidia, bar one, have returned to in-person meetings. One praesidium organised a Rosary at the crib in O’Connell Street where over 50 people attended. Members organise a vigil on the first Friday/Saturday of the month in the Morning Star Hostel. Members also support Mary’s Channel of Grace nightly Rosary and helped with recently held men’s conference.
Veneranda Curia is back holding meetings since October. Legionaries accompanied the Priest and deacon on an intensive visitation of homes in Berkeley Road parish, which concluded in September with all homes in the parish visited and blessed, if requested. It was obvious that all parishioners were very happy to have their homes and streets blessed. Many good contacts were made. Some praesidia have resumed meetings. Works include book barrow, delivery of Catholic newspapers and leaflets, working in Regina Coeli. One praesidium has resumed home-to-home visitation. The library in Ballymun is ongoing.
Kerala Senatus: due to the high number of Covid infections meetings have not been taking place. Some Comitia have held on-line meetings and the Centenary was marked on line on 7th September.
Karnataka Senatus: resumed its meeting in October 2021 but with smaller attendances. The minutes include mention of holding their Centenary celebrations in March 2022.
Mumbai Senatus: no meetings held since March 2021 due to the Pandemic, online contact has been maintained and Rosary online is also available to Auxiliary members. Bangladesh Curia sent a report saying they have 5 praesidia. The Senatus had Mass and other events to mark the Centenary over 2 days. 230 attended and 100 balloons were released. Nepal with 4 praesidia hopes to resume physical meetings soon.
Vishakhapatnam Regia: sent minutes for October and November 2021, delighted to be back to physical meetings. Each council celebrated Mass for Frank Duff’s anniversary. All who can read have a Handbook in either of the 3 languages available (English, Tamil or Malayalam).
Pondicherry Senatus hope to resume meeting in January 2022. Mass was celebrated by the Archbishop and 7 priests with 297 legionaries present and following regulations. They had a simple celebration afterwards in line with Concilium’s suggestion.
Resumed meeting in April 2021, however most praesidia are not physically meeting yet. The Curia has suggested a second Curia be set up to enable a Comitium to be established.
Bishop John and Bishop Noel celebrated Mass in September to mark the Centenary which was also live streamed. Each of the 5 attached Comitia held prayer, Rosary and Allocutios on Zoom during the week 13th-17th September.
Meetings have not been held due to Covid. Legionaries have been asked to attend Mass via webcam daily; recite daily the full Legion prayers and study the Handbook; attend Eucharistic Adoration online and keep in contact with members by whatever electronic means are available to them. Members tuned in to the Centenary Mass from Francis Street on 3 September and also had 3 Masses celebrated in their own country in Saigon and Hanoi marking the centenary and Our Lady’s birthday. 36 active members have died as a result of Covid. The legionaries in the Hang Xang parish report contacting a young man in 2005 who was drawn to the Catholic Church but didn’t receive the Eucharist. They invited him to join the RCIA and supported him throughout, he joined the Legion and was very active with extension. Two years after becoming a Catholic he joined the Redemptorists and was ordained on 26th October 2021.
Prayers for them are requested.
Legionaries were asked to recite the daily Catena and to say the full Legion prayers at the time their praesidium meetings would normally have taken place. Some praesidia resumed in September 2021 but no apostolic works as yet.
Brussels Senatus: Held meetings from August to November ’21. December meeting was cancelled and no work has been done. A meeting was planned for 8th January. Centenary Mass took place on 7th of September, Bishop Jean Kockerols presiding and 150 in attendance Antwerp Regia is asking the Concilium for permission to reduce to Curia level.
Amsterdam Regia: When possible both Patrician groups hold meetings, sometimes on Zoom. There is a possibility of a new praesidium in an area 30 kms from Amsterdam. There is a large Vietnamese community in this town, four of whom have already attended a meeting.
Frankfurt Senatus. Archbishop Nikola Etelovic, Apostolic Nuncio, travelled from Berlin to celebrate the Centenary Mass on 7th November in St Gallus Church, Frankfurt. Mass attendance was restricted to 80 persons but it was streamed live on YouTube.
Berlin Comitium has one Curia and 8 directly attached praesidia with 83 active and 249 auxiliary members. The ‘33 Day’ Marian Consecration preparation concluded with Holy Mass on 6th June.
Munich Regia has 2 Comitia, 9 Curiae and 8 praesidia attached totalling 350 active and 4000 auxiliaries. The auxiliary Bishop of Munich accompanied by 5 Spiritual Directors joined a group of legionaries on a pilgrimage to Maria Einsiedl as part of the Centenary celebrations. During the Mass the Bishop greatly encouraged the legionaries in their apostolate. An information evening resulted in 9 people turning up for a meeting. Visitation of homes and praying the Rosary has helped people overcome loneliness.
Korean Curia has 15 praesidia totalling 142 active and 218 auxiliary members.
Zurich Comitium has 11 praesidia with 62 active members. Most meetings are virtual Street contact is undertaken in Lucerne and the pilgrim statue offered.
Comitium has 6 praesidia with 30 active members. Visitation of the sick and elderly and telephone contact work is undertaken.
Freiburg Comitium has 7 praesidia and 3 Curiae attached and works include street, carpark and camping park apostolate and contact with Muslims.
Paris Senatus Report covers April to September. Senatus resumed meeting in March 2021 despite ongoing restrictions. Some praesidia reported difficulty in meeting as certain parish halls remained closed. The establishment of a new Curia in Paris is currently under discussion.
Strasbourg Comitium reported that a number of praesidia are not meeting due to ageing profile of the legionaries. Comitium meetings are held on Zoom but are poorly attended. One praesidium answered the priests call for help with apostolate to the sick involving visiting the sick and bringing Holy Communion to parishioners.
Brentwood Regia: Members are slowly returning to meetings. Two Curiae have not yet returned but the President is keeping in touch. A new praesidium has been set up in Walsingham with an attendance of 8. It is in a large parish covering 4 Churches and the parish priest would like the legionaries to undertake a census. Interest has also been expressed by another priest and a meeting has been arranged with him. The works of praesidia are keeping in touch with auxiliaries and house bound and those in nursing and care homes.
Hammersmith Curia has 8 praesidia with 58 members and works are visitation and care of many residents in various care homes such as distributing Holy Communion and getting a priest for confession.
Brent and Harrow Curia has 4 praesidia totalling 18 active and 86 auxiliary members and works are visitation in their parishes and hospitals and nursing homes and teaching catechism to Confirmation and Holy Communion classes.
Southwark Comitium has 5 Curiae and 45 praesidia of which 8 are new and 6 junior praesidia and the main works are home visitation crowd contact, visitation of nursing homes and housebound and work with juniors. Despite lockdown the Comitium has been meeting, using virtual technology, maintaining contact with councils and praesidia and also encouraging weekly handbook study and other spiritual readings etc.
Central London Curia is back holding regular meetings as also are a good number of praesidia. Three praesidia reports featured with membership of 11, 9 and 3 active and a total of 265 auxiliaries. Works include, visitation of the sick, Zoom meetings comprising 3 prayer groups involving rosary, Divine Mercy chaplet, Sunday Gospel sharing Through Faith sharing 4 new members were recruited, and 2 auxiliaries and another person was baptised. The Curia held a full day of events to celebrate the Centenary with Holy Mass celebrated by Bishop McAleenan, and Curia Spiritual Director, Parish Priest and 3 priests from the Nigerian Chaplaincy. Celebrations also included a talk on Frank Duff, some concert items and concluded with Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament.
Liverpool Senatus: A new President and Secretary have been elected. Archbishop Malcom McMahon celebrated Mass in Liverpool Cathedral on 20th November to mark the Legion Centenary. A congress was held in September.
Middlesbrough Comitium has 3 praesidia attached and Billingham Curia. During the summer months they met in each other’s gardens and set up a What’s App group to keep in touch with each other.
The Wirral Curia is back meeting since September A contact met on book barrow work told legionaries that he had regained his faith after talking with them
Warrington Curia has 3 praesidia attached totalling 16 active and 20 auxiliaries. During lockdown members were involved in various parish ministries.
Manchester Comitium has 3 praesidia and 10 Curiae attached. From March 2020 to September 2021 meetings held via Zoom and works generally were stewarding and other parish ministries. Since September works include involvement in adult Confirmation preparation and Sacramental Programmes for children.
Sweden Our Lady of Mercy Curia has 7 praesidia and works include miraculous medal distribution, visits to homes and nursing homes, monthly visits with priest for Enthronement. In the past 8 months 9 families have participated. On the 15th September the Centenary Mass was celebrated by Cardinal Anders.
Birmingham Senatus: Centenary celebrations took place in St. Chad’s Cathedral, in Glastonbury, Leicester and other venues. Senatus meetings resumed in August but with a reduced attendance as also is the case with many praesidia. A new praesidium has been set up in St. Joseph’s parish Banbury and the members are getting a great response in large housing estates where people are hungry for the message of hope.
Councils under the caretakership of the Senatus.
Northampton Comitium Meetings have resumed. Permission has been given for a new praesidium in High Wycombe.
Swansea Curia 5 praesidia are meeting regularly and are carrying out an apostolate.
Senatus of Scotland: Meetings have resumed since September. Great direction has been received from Bishops and priests re meetings and work. Most praesidia are meeting though some legionaries have not come back. Mater Ecclesia Curia has closed due to the lack of officers and two praesidia will be attached to the Senatus.
Since beginning of Pandemic despite writing and phone calls no reply has been received. The Spiritual Director in a letter indicated that the Curia is finished. Praesidia directly attached to Concilium.
Tonsberg: Our Lady Queen of Peace praesidium continues to meet. It has 6 active and 25 auxiliary members. Good contact is kept with auxiliaries through house calls and telephone. A Mass for the Centenary was celebrated on 7th September followed by a DVD on the Legion of Mary.
Drammen: Our Lady of the Rosary praesidium has resumed weekly meetings. There are 6 full and 2 probationers on roll. A virtual Rosary with parishioners and participants from other countries takes place every Saturday. A ‘9 day’ Novena in preparation for Christmas was organised and faith formation talks are given to a person wishing to become Catholic.
A good New Year resolution would be to promote the 6 Frank Duff’s books which are a great bargain at €7 each or the full set for €40.
• Walking With Mary
• Mary Shall Reign
• Victory Through Mary
• The Spirit of the Legion of Mary
• Virgo Praedicanda
• The Woman of Genesis
From 18 to 25 January we had the annual Week of Prayer for Christian Unity.
In the articles in all of Frank’s books we will find good reasons why we do our best to offer the faith to our separated brethren. For instance, in Victory Through Mary, Ch. 4 “We have Kept the Faith to Ourselves,” Frank gives some very interesting quotes from Peregrini reports showing that people are waiting to be approached.
Alfie Lambe’s anniversary was on Friday 21st.
Frank Duff’s booklet on his life at 50 cents and Hilde Firtel’s book at €3.50 are a great means of refreshing interest in him.
The 2022 Centenary Calendar is now available costing only €3 each, postage extra.
Please ensure all your legionaries and auxiliaries are made aware of it and send in orders immediately. It also makes a wonderful gift for family and friends.