Concilium Bulletin November 2018
Auckland Senatus: Christchurch Korean Curia has 8 praesidia attached and 65 members. Auckland Korean Comitium has 16 senior and 3 junior praesidia. One of the 4 Samoan Comitia has 3 Curiae; they have an apostolate to the lapsed, prepare children for Baptism and urge couples living together to avail of the Sacrament of Matrimony. St. Auckland Curia had a Brown Scapular enrolment and an Exploratio Dominicalis project, visiting 600 homes. Other works reported: 50 Miraculous Medals distributed during Fresher’s Week; 6 libraries visited to suggest Catholic books to stock.
Brisbane Comitium: Works reported included visiting the cancer and stroke units in the hospital and bringing Catholic literature to them, visiting sick and elderly people and transporting them to Mass, visiting nursing homes with Holy Communion and assisting the residents to Mass. Pilgrim statue visitation, and giving assistance at funerals was also reported. One Korean Curia, 11 nearby praesidia, 4 Vietnamese praesidia and 5 distant praesidia are attached to the Comitium.
Melbourne Senatus: Western Suburbs Curia had 100 children attend the Rosary in school over a 4 week period. 8 Pilgrim statues are in circulation to 150 families. 12 adults were received into the Church. In Broken Hill 50 attended the public Rosary. Dandenong Curia members include teaching the Rosary to children during the lunch break as part of their apostolate. The Senatus organised a Junior Fun Day and had 100 attending. There was great support from the parents. Extension resulted in 2 new praesidia. The Korean Curia has 4 praesidia, and 18 members who are involved in all aspects of parish life. All councils reported their forthcoming Mass to commemorate the death of the Servant of God, Frank Duff.
Sydney Senatus: All praesidia work closely with the Parish Priest. Homes, hospitals, and nursing homes are visited. Book barrow apostolate is undertaken at the train station and street contact also done. Mass is organised in the State schools.
Mindanao Senatus: Many reports were received of marriage regularisations and conversions from the sects. A man who had Tuberculosis and prayed through the intercession of Frank Duff for a cure has been told by doctors that the disease has disappeared.
Senatus of Northern Philippines: The Spiritual Director, Fr. Durero of Madang Regia, Papau New Guinea, visited the Senatus meeting in May to discuss the planned Conference among the 4 Regia and the proposed elevation of Madang to Senatus level. Port Moresby Regia has 6 senior Curiae. On home visitation the members met many lapsed and non-Catholics, had 74 baptised and 10 confirmed. At the Catholic Bishops Conference, the Cardinal mentioned that the Holy Father had recognised the work of the Legion of Mary which gave encouragement and strength to the laity. Works reported included the holding of an Advent Recollection for 45 drug-dependents. A senior and junior praesidium was established and a Patrician meeting set up in a home for abandoned former mental health patients. Manila Comitium held an exhibition on the life and works of Frank Duff attended by over 200 which included students of nearby colleges and schools.
Western Visayas Senatus: 12 Comitia, 1 Regia and 1 Curia reported. 6 PPC projects took place, with over 1,700 people contacted. On home visitation many marriages were validated, lapsed Catholics returned to the Sacraments, over 60 Baptisms took place and children were prepared for Confirmation. Block Rosaries were also organised. A Jail is visited weekly where Mass is arranged and catechism taught. Northern Central Iloilo Comitium visited over 1,400 patients, gave catechetical instruction to 1,784 students, and visited the jail. 25 seniors and juniors attended an introductory meeting for Legion membership.
Bicolandia Senatus: Recruitment is on the Agenda weekly. 5 children received the Sacrament of Baptism after their parents were instructed in the faith. Catechism was taught in the Elementary school and in the Jails. Sick persons were assisted to go to Confession and receive Holy Communion. After praying 2,000 Hail Mary’s at the Chapel of Sto. Nino at camp Simeon Ola, Legaspi City, police recruits approached legionaries to inquire about the procedure for getting married in the Catholic Church. The Chaplain was consulted, and after proper coordination with the concerned parties, a mass wedding was successfully conducted.
Cebu Senatus: Attendance at council meetings is very good. Financial reports are detailed and cover every item of expenditure. The Spiritual Director, Fr. Ubod, delivers excellent Allocutios, and much attention is given to the formation of juniors. Reports covered home visitation, conversions including that of a youth and an Iglesiani Kristo couple with their children who were baptised and the couple married. San Jose Curia visited 45 homes and arranged the anointing of 10 sick people. 15 children were baptised, 10 couples had marriages validated, and 500 children catechized in school. Another Curia taught catechism to 292 non-Catholic children in schools.
Bogota Senatus: The Senatus consists of 8 Regiae, 7 Comitia, 6 Curiae and 8 praesidia. A Video Club in a prison shows films on the lives of the saints and other religious themes; the Rosary is also recited. There is an apostolate to military personnel. Other works mentioned include visitation in difficult areas, street contact with the homeless, visiting soup kitchens and brothels and co-ordinating Pilgrimages. They promote the Rosary amongst Venezuelan migrants. The Senatus ran a workshop on extension in September and has 2 praesidia in formation. The Columban Drive method is widely used and recruitment cards are used during street contact. Two extension workers who went to Villavicencio set up 2 praesidia. The Regia of Tunja established a praesidium in the seminary.
Regia de Bucaramanga works a lot with the youth, giving literacy classes, working with children suffering from cancer, running homework clubs and picking litter during nature walks (True Devotion to the Nation). A new President was elected and duly ratified by the Senatus.
Senatus of Medellin: In their September Retreat, attendees were reminded of the importance of recruiting young people into the Legion. A Curia in Medellin City started a new praesidium. Another Curia reported that 4 members run a prayer cenacle with 38 participants. A third Curia took Holy Communion to the sick and housebound on 738 occasions. In one case they encountered a sick person who had been bedbound for many years. A priest was alerted who celebrated Mass in the home and 4 days later the person passed away peacefully.
Senatus of Montevideo: 1 Comitium, 1 Curia and 3 praesidia reported prison, home and hospital visitation, street contact, catechesis, and mobile Chapels. One new praesidium has been established. A PPC project to Salto is being organised and they will have a stand in the upcoming National Conference of the Laity. In January elections will be held for a new President.
Senatus of Santiago: October minutes tell of great attention being given to auxiliary members. Some auxiliaries have started prayers groups and eventually became active members. On some home visitation readings are selected from the Bible and explained to those visited. Immigrants arriving in Chile are joining praesidia in great numbers, especially those from Venezuela. Antofagasta legionaries do Pilgrim statue visitation in the beach area, making contact with many families.
Senatus of La Paz: The legionaries ask for prayers as the political situation in the country gets more difficult. Special attention is given to the setting up of junior praesidia. Groups of young people are met and spoken with for a few weeks before forming new praesidia. Many praesidia have been running Patrician meetings for a long time. Susana Maciel, former extension worker regularly advises the Senatus. Many parishes have an annual open day in which each association, including the Legion, uses a stand to explain the Legion and invite new members.
Senatus of Asunción: The Senatus has 1 Regia, 3 senior and 1 junior Comitia, 11 Curiae and 15 praesidia. Amongst the works reported are home visitation, visiting the sick at home and in hospital, catechesis for sacrament children, pre-matrimony talks, and visiting police stations. They visit the women’s prison and have formed a praesidium there. In preparation for the Centenary, they are dedicating this year to Alfie Lambe and youth, 2019 to Frank Duff and knowledge of the Handbook and 2020 to Edel Quinn. A Day for Spiritual Directors was held. The Senatus has formed an Alfie Lambe Committee to promote his cause.
Senatus of Lima: Reports were presented by 2 Regia, 6 Comitia, 11 Curiae and 3 praesidia and included 82,000 home visits, 29,000 visits to the sick, 42,000 street contacts and 16,000 people prepared for the Sacraments. The Police Commissary is visited weekly, the Rosary recited and the Mass readings of the day read. Several praesidia visit prisons each week and there are 6 praesidia made up of prisoners. Several book barrows are in use while the Sacred Heart was enthroned in 4,934 homes. Almost all praesidia carry out an annual Exploratio Dominicalis project while various Curiae have held Congresses. The second Annual Youth Conference is being held this year. They report over 600 visits to public buildings with an image of Our Lady, including the Treasury, the High Court, the Congress and Government Department. They work in difficult areas frequented by alcoholics, addicts, homosexuals and prostitutes. A youth contemplating suicide was given attention and is now a legionary. Considerable work is done with the Quechua-speaking peoples. The Legion has been extended to Cuyumalca and Santa Rosa.
Senatus of Caracas: The Legion exists in every Diocese. There are several reports of praesidia in formation. Also reported are people rescued from witchcraft and 20 abortions avoided. Two junior Curiae, affiliated to the Regia of Merida, held a joint Congress. The juniors help with catechesis and visit the sick accompanied by adult legionaries.
Senatus of Quito: Exploratio Dominicalis projects have been carried out in many areas including in Pifo at the request of a Parish Priest. Home visitation is very prominent and many conversions are reported including that of a Jehovah Witness. True Devotion to Mary is mentioned. They report helping invalids and bringing them to the doctor. In Ibarra Curia, legionaries built a small chapel and set up a pre-junior Legion group.
IRISH PROVINCIAL REPORT
Carlow Comitium: Child safeguarding is being attended to and praesidia are constantly on the lookout for conveniently located refresher courses. Askea praesidium which was revived during the special project in March 2017, gave its first report. There are 3 members and the President of the Comitium attended all the meetings and usually one or two other members also attend. They visit the elderly doing works of service for them when necessary and some home visitation is also undertaken. There were representatives from Kildare and Laois Curiae at the September meeting. Kildare Curia was visited by the Comitium in July. The importance of holding Curia officers meetings was pointed out by the visitors. Laois Curia: Great efforts are being made to establish a praesidium in Mountmellick.
Elphin Comitium: Ballyleague praesidium has 5 members who visit 2 nursing homes, do home visitation and ensure that bottles of Holy Water are available in the Church porch. They organise Eucharistic Adoration every First Friday and an Annual Pilgrimage to Lough Derg. A discussion item “Plans for the Future” brought forth very many good ideas on how to make the Legion and its works better known. An extension project in Athlone in conjunction with a Deus et Patria group resulted in the start of a new praesidium. North Elphin Curia is planning a Columban Drive to the Geevagh and Highwood parishes in the hope of gaining new members while visiting the homes. The Curia and Comitium each sponsored 2 non-legionnaires to the September Youth Conference in Dublin.
Tuam Comitium: Extension efforts in Headford parish are on-going. One young person from Tuam and 2 from the attached Westport Curia attended the Dublin Youth Conference and were very impressed. Kilkerrin/Clonberne praesidium has 5 members who organise and participate in Eucharistic Adoration. The Eucharist is taken to the housebound, who are also given the parish newsletter. Promotion of Pioneers to the Confirmation classes resulted in 3 joining. Dunmore praesidium, also with 5 members does home visitation and also promotes the Pilgrim statue. The First Communion class students in the parish school were given prayer cards, and Miraculous Medals. The Pilgrim statue was taken to a Primary school and left there for a week. A decade of the Rosary was recited daily by the children. Mountbellew praesidium members do home visitation, visit a nursing home and a Day Care centre. They organised 24 hour Adoration for protection of the unborn. Many auxiliaries were recruited and they now have 50 in total. The Pilgrim statue, Holy Water, Miraculous Medals and St. Brigid’s crosses are also taken to the homes.
Achonry Curia has 3 praesidia attached. A Mass in honour of Frank Duff was held in Ballaghaderreen on 11th September. The celebrating priest spoke about the presence of the Legion in the Diocese and the great example given by the life of Frank Duff.
Clonfert Curia: Cappataggle praesidium has 7 members, including two Praetorians. They have 20 auxiliaries. A Legion altar with Tesserae and prayer leaflets was placed in the sanctuary during the month of May to promote the Legion. They do hospital and nursing home visitation, and visit those living alone. Another reporting praesidium has 5 members, 3 of whom are Praetorians. They visit a nursing home, the housebound and organise Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament.
Ferns Curia: A praesidium in Wexford has a membership of 10, including young legionaries. Street contact is carried out on Saturdays between 12-2p.m. and 9-11p.m. 1,000 Miraculous Medals have been given out. Home visitation is also undertaken. The praesidium hopes to establish the “Lightfever” (adoration in a Church by candlelight) evangelisation programme in the Ferns Diocese.
Galway Curia: A reporting praesidium with 5 members visits the sick and elderly in their homes and nursing homes. They organised outdoor Rosaries in the summer and during the winter recited the Rosary in some homes. Another praesidium undertakes home visitation and brings the Pilgrim statue to Merlin Park hospital. An information meeting has been arranged with the hope of forming a new praesidium. The parish newsletter is distributed on home visitation.
Killala Curia: Recent Patrician meetings in Ballina had an attendance of 13 with the paper on Alfie Lambe and 6 at “Can We Be Saints.” The works of Knocmore praesidium with 7 members and 50 auxiliaries include Pilgrim statue, and hospital visitation, plus parish activities. They organised the distribution of Miraculous Medals and prayer leaflets for students doing examinations. Parish bulletins are given to the housebound and the sick in hospital. They have an attached junior praesidium. Templeboy praesidium has 6 members and 25 auxiliaries. They prepare religious packs for First Holy Communion children. A new initiative to promote Adoration among the young has been undertaken in Killala Diocese. Visits to schools in Ballina are being planned.
Kilkenny Curia: A Pilgrimage to Knock Shrine for ‘Legion Sunday’ was enjoyed by all. The bus for the trip was sold out two weeks before the Pilgrimage.
Consolata Curia: Members of one praesidium visit the local boy’s school weekly to pray a decade of the Rosary with the boys and give a short talk, followed by a question and answer session. Pilgrim statue visitation is undertaken and public Rosaries are organised in the parish. Legionaries spoke after weekend Masses in the parish about the life and works of Frank Duff and led the congregation in the prayer for his beatification. Three prospective members were gained following a weekend recruiting effort.
Veneranda Curia: In the absence of a monthly report at a Curia meeting, a discussion took place on the work of home visitation and the developing of the legionaries’ approach. The praying of the Breviary was encouraged. One praesidium distributes 90 Maria Legionis and has received a positive response on home visitation to the Two Hearts Consecration prayer. Non-Catholics are visited during Christian Unity week and a Rosary is recited weekly in a local nursing home. The praesidium was invited to have a stand in St. Patrick’s College Dublin City University and many good contacts were made with students accepting Miraculous Medals and literature. Two Primary schools were visited and some families with children not-baptised are being visited and the importance of Baptism explained to them. They have 70 auxiliaries, including 30 probationary auxiliaries.
Bethlehem Curia: One praesidium organises a ‘De Montfort Men’s Club’ twice weekly where the Rosary, Catena and Frank Duff prayer are recited. Activities such as games of Pool are followed by supper and watching T.V. 20 men attended the club during the year, 7 for the first time. Former club members who are now in nursing homes or hospital are visited regularly. Mass and Confession take place on the First Friday of the month, with members participating in the singing, readings and music. Five members of the praesidium took part in an Exploratio Dominicalis project to a neighbouring parish. Many good contacts were made on book barrow contact outside the Curia house. Two public Rosaries were attended by approximately 60 people.
Porta Coeli Curia: Contact work was done on a Harbour Pier by local legionaries and permission was granted to set up a May altar in the local Primary school. Nursing home and Pilgrim statue visitation is done. Promoting Catholic newspapers are among works undertaken by another praesidium. A seven-member praesidium undertakes home visitation and promotion of the ‘Alive’ Catholic newspaper.
Presentata Curia: Three praesidia reported a total of 29 active members, 17 auxiliaries and 1 Adjutorian member. A monthly Mass for Africans is promoted through street contact in the city centre. A Patrician group was started this year and a weekly Mother and Toddler group continues to function well with short prayers interspersed between games and chat. Members assist in the daily running of the Morning Star hostel by cleaning, preparing and serving meals and encouraging residents. The Men’s Shed opens six days a week and offers weekly activities such as creative writing, Irish language conversation, art class, darts, guitar lessons, counselling, outings, movies and sing-songs. Four residents supervise the Shed at certain times and one resident provides a popular Spanish lesson twice weekly. The Shed also provides an outlet for former residents and several of those have acquired employment through the assistance of the legionaries in the Shed.
Accra Senatus: The Legion was re-launched at Adjirigano with 15 new members and 5 former members. Tema Comitium established 2 new praesidia.
Kumasi Regia had 222 Catechumens and 469 Sunday school students in the various parishes under instruction. Praesidia and councils organised various Masses, talks and functions to mark the foundation of the Legion on 7th September. The Senatus organises a monthly Frank Duff prayer session.
Cape Verde Regia: One praesidium reports holding its meeting at 7.30 a.m. Regia correspondents visited their councils in several islands. The Regia discussed the challenges of evangelising youth and it was stressed that great care should be taken of junior praesidia, and that the Legion, in keeping with the spirit of founder Frank Duff should be presented as a joyful organisation.
Luanda Senatus: The Senatus accepted the advice not to take away most of the praesidia directly attached to the Senatus to form a new Curia. Items mentioned in Minutes included a meeting with auxiliary members, a meeting with all the officers of the higher councils in Luanda and a Retreat for officers of these councils. The 97th Anniversary of the Legion was celebrated in September. Visits were made to some distant councils. An Annual Report of the Senatus showed works undertaken by praesidia directly attached included home, hospital and prison visitation, and visits to the sick and elderly in their homes; they also teach catechism.
Benguela Senatus: A new Bishop was appointed for the Diocese of Benguela. He is to meet and celebrate Mass with legionaries from the various cities in the Diocese and meet with representatives of the Regiae and Comitia attached to the Senatus. A letter of greetings was sent to the new Bishop. Senatus is planning a meeting with the attached Regiae and Comitia for the preparation and celebration of the Centenary of the Legion of Mary and they will present their proposals to the Episcopal Conference of Angola and São Tomé.
Lesotho Senatus has 23 praesidia directly attached and they regularly present a short report at the Senatus meeting. A new praesidium reported a good attendance at its meetings and on work done. The Spiritual Director of the Senatus is planning to translate the Venerable Edel and Alfie Lambe prayers into Sesotho.
Harare Curia has five attached praesidia, all with a full quota officers. The Curia takes six-monthly reports from its praesidia and visits them on a regular basis. They are trying to contact the Legion councils in other parts of Zimbabwe with a view to putting them back in touch with Concilium.
Hwange Comitium: A new Secretary was elected in October. The Treasurer of the Comitium attended the August Concilium meeting in Dublin.
Johannesburg Senatus: A praesidium of 8 members carry out home visitation, speaking to people about the faith and encouraging lapsed-Catholics to return to the Sacraments. Street contact is also done. Out of 15 Catholics met in the street, one youth attended RCIA meetings. A praesidium of 9 members visited 168 homes, spoke to 50 non-Catholics, made 24 visits to Care Homes and visited 10 bereaved families; they prayed the Rosary in some of the homes visited. A praesidium of 5 active members doing home visitation, spoke with 4 lapsed Catholics and 45 non-Catholics; they made 18 hospital visits, and did some street contact. Another praesidium visited 12 Catholics and 15 non-Catholics; they also contacted 5 homeless people and visited the homes of sick children.
Marianhill Comitium: Members of the Comitium visit parishes in the area to talk about the Legion with a view to getting it started in these parishes. The Spiritual Director is very enthusiastic about extending the Legion. Among the works mentioned in the Annual Report is visiting the sick, both in hospital and at home. In the latter case, legionaries helped some people with home chores.
Isogodeni Comitium: His Eminence Cardinal Napier has appointed Spiritual Director for the Legion in Durban Archdiocese.
Durban Comitium: A praesidium with 8 active members engages in home and hospital visitation. They have 30 auxiliaries.
Matatiele Comitium: The Bizana Curia is functioning and is now attached to Matatiele Comitium. Bishop Mpanbani has appointed a Spiritual Director for the Legion in the Diocese. The new Spiritual Director is anxious to extend the Legion.
Cape Town Senatus: The 3 praesidia reporting all do home visitation as part of their apostolate. A new President and Secretary have been elected. A recruiting team has been selected and they began visiting various parishes in October.
A team of legionaries from Cape Town Senatus visited Namibia in June with the view to organising the Legion in that country.