Concilium Bulletin September 2009
REPORTS - ASIA & OCEANIA
MELBOURNE SENATUS: The Senatus governs the Legion in the metropolitan provinces of Melbourne, Adelaide and Perth and numerous Pacific islands. Constant attention is given to extension and new senior and junior praesidia are set up fairly regularly. The main apostolate includes home visitation, visiting nursing homes and hostels, bringing Holy Communion to the sick and assisting in parish activities. The immigrant communities are visited and the Legion is well established among the Vietnamese people. Hobart Curia celebrated the 75th anniversary of the setting up of the Legion in Tasmania in February with a Mass concelebrated by Archbishop Adrian Doyle and 6 priests. The Legion in Vanuata islands in the Pacific is governed by 3 Comitia and 2 Curiae and is comprised of 44 directly attached praesidia and 11 Curiae.
SYDNEY SENATUS: The Legion exists in 10 of the 11 dioceses covered by the Senatus with a senior membership of 2,176 and 257 probationers, 281 juniors and over 8,000 auxiliaries. Attached to the Senatus are 2 Comitia, 2l Curiae, 14 praesidia. The Koreans have 60 senior and 5 junior praesidia and the Vietnamese have l3 senior praesidia. Works listed include visits to Catholics and non-Catholics among the Koreans, Indonesians, and Vietnamese with excellent results; evangelisation at market fairs, operating a Catholic information centre and book barrow, teaching state school catechism and visiting prisons, seamen and hostels.
SOLOMON ISLANDS covers 3 dioceses and the Legion is in 2. There are 11 and 21 praesidia respectively in each Curia with 420 active legionaries and 204 auxiliaries. Recently 4 new praesidia were established. Visitation to homes, seamen and a prison were reported. 26 children were Baptised and Exploratio Dominicalis projects were carried out.
BRISBANE COMITIUM celebrated their 70th anniversary at the July meeting. A Mass and reception preceded the meeting. A congratulatory letter received from Concilium President was read and appreciated. There are l3 directly attached praesidia and 2 Curiae with 207 members. The Legion is in l3 parishes of the Brisbane Archdiocese. There is a Legion presence in each of the other 4 dioceses of Queensland and in recent months 2 new praesidia have been formed.
AUCKLAND SENATUS: Four new praesidia were set up since January in parishes where the Legion did not exist. Auxiliary rallies are held by all and great care and attention is paid to their membership. A Patrician meeting has an average attendance of l8. The correspondent has encouraged more patrician groups to be set up. The Junior Curia has 8 praesidia and l30 members who work with seniors on hospital and nursing home visitation, run a religious stall and help with the Sunday liturgy, altar serving and rosary apostolate. Works reported by the seniors include marriage validations, visits to the sick and housebound and bringing Holy Communion. Through regular visits many lapsed returned to the sacraments. On 29th May, 11 Maori New Zealanders aged l3 to l5 years were baptized and confirmed. On visits to a war veterans home and a prison, legionaries read scripture and prayed the Rosary. Koreans, Chinese and Filipino praesidia work among their own communities.
PAPUA NEW GUINEA: Conversions from the sects features in most reports. Legionaries are helping Basic Christian Community groups by encouraging their leaders to get members involved in the apostolate. Rabaul Regia, Two letters were received in March and July outlining progress and expansion in areas where the Legion did not exist particularly on the large island of Bourgainville..
MINDANAO SENATUS: The Biennial conference for all Filipino councils was held in Cagayon De Oro and was judged a huge success. Members learned a great deal especially regarding the government of the Legion. Conversion is a priority with the council and many inspiring reports of returns from the sects were detailed. The need to form at least one new Regia was urged by the correspondent.
BICOLANDIA SENATUS marked the 50th anniversary of the death of the Servant of God Alfie Lambe by organising a Mass and talk on his life. A congress is planned for the year of Evangelisation. The Acies was held in the Carmelite Monastery with the Sisters who were former legionaries joining in. Two praesidia in a jail have 24 members. A junior Curia set up 4 new praesidia. Legionaries help the priest in preparing children for their first confession. Returns to the faith of Born again Christians and Seventh Day Adventists were reported.
WESTERN VISAYAS REGIA: Attendance of Council officers was 75% and praesidia 65%. Exploratio Dominicalis is promoted. There are university and seminary praesidia and a good presence of junior legionaries. A new Comitium was set up and more are being organised. Conversion of a Muslim mother and Baptist woman and her children were reported. Illoilo Curia arranged a “Day with street children”. Junior legionaries in Oton Curia encouraged 653 persons to attend Mass.
CEBU SENATUS: Eighteen Curiae reported covering 188 senior and 78 junior praesidia. Eleven new senior and 4 junior praesidia were set up as a result of extension work. Assisting in the training of disabled and handicapped is the work of juniors. Four Comitia have 13 senior and 1 junior Curiae. Extension and Exploratio are mentioned in reports. Three Regiae reported a membership of over 9,000 members and 700 on probation with over 15,000 auxiliaries, 690 praetorians and 332 Adjutorians. Computer cafes are targeted for recruitment of juniors. Extension efforts resulted in 4 new Curiae and 2 senior and 6 junior praesidia being set up.
MAASIN Regia was inaugurated in February with Concelebrated Mass led by the Episcopal Vicar. 4,000 legionaries attended.
SENATUS OF NORTHERN PHILIPPINES: Conversions of Mormons, Jehovah Witnesses, and Born again Christians were reported. An account of 41 Confirmations and 250 Baptisms featured. Junior members graduated to senior ranks. Lipa Comitium showed marked improvement in attendance. Silang Comitium supervise 28 praesidia at Boystown and 33 at Girlstown; both are institutions. Imus Comitium had 147 individuals from various religious dominations converted to the Catholic faith. Visits to orphanages, institutions for street and abandoned children are the work in Tarlac Comitium. Different praesidia take turns in leading the weekly broadcast of the Rosary at the only Marian Radio station in Asia. The Senatus celebrated the 69th anniversary of the founding of the Legion of Mary in the Philippines on 21st July. The Legion exists in 6 Archdioceses and 23 Dioceses. There is just one diocese, which does not as yet have the Legion.
The Senatus of Amsterdam has one attached Comitium at Heerlen in the South of the country, which governs about 4 praesidia and one Curia. The Cape Verdian Curia in Amsterdam organised 3 coaches to take pilgrims to Fatima. It has one Patrician group. The praesidium visiting street girls reported that some of them had left the area and had asked for help to start a new life. Legionaries carry out the works asked for by various parish priests including visiting the sick at home and in hospital, welcoming new comers to the parish and visiting the parents of newly baptised children.
The praesidium in Copenhagen has a membership of 20. There are 104 auxiliary members. The apostolate includes block rosaries, visitation of hospitals and sick people in their homes as well as other types of church service.
The praesidium in Tonsberg has six members and their apostolate includes teaching catechism, visiting the sick and housebound and assisting the Parish Priest with church services and activities. Following their visit to Concilium in May they are planning to establish a praesidium in the town of Drammen.
The Senatus based in Glasgow with 17 directly attached praesidia governs two local Curiae and 4 other Curiae. There is a total of 75 praesidia in the country. The Legion is established in 6 of the Dioceses. Extension and recruiting efforts are being made and in April a visit was made to Aberdeen and 8 people attended a meeting there. A praesidium set up in 2008 in Glasgow University has 5 members who attend the Wayside Club, visit homes with the Pilgrim statue and do fruitful contact work with a book barrow outside the university Library.
Scottish legionaries took part in a PPC project in Jyvaskyla in July. A prayer group set up in Oulu following a previous PPC project, meets twice a month. The members who are all Finnish converts pray the Rosary and the Legion prayers.
Brussels Senatus: A new praesidium has been set up in Molenbeck. Four Peregrinatio teams worked in the Brussels area this year. Antwerp Senatus: There are 3 directly attached praesidia with a total membership of 16 and a Curia at Gent, which has 3 praesidia. The works consist mainly of visiting the sick and elderly and bringing Holy Communion to them.
In Fribourg, legionaries work apostolate includes visiting the sick at home and in hospital, bringing them Holy Communion, contacting people on the streets and public areas, works of service and helping with Church activities.
Munich Senatus has 2 directly attached comitia, 10 attached Curiae and 13 attached praesidia with a total of 533 active and 5,620 auxiliary members. Extension is being pursued and a new praesidium has been set up in Bad Goeggin by Ambert-Weiden Curia. Contact has been made with the Portuguese and Italian communities in Stuttgart for the purpose of extension. When visiting a prison, legionaries spoke to female prisoners and distributed Rosary beads and Miraculous Medals. Contact will be maintained with the prisoners through correspondence.
Frankfurt Senatus: The German Legion website is updated and supervised by the officers of both Frankfurt and Munich Senatus. Annual reports from praesidia in Usingen, St Gallus and Eltville reported on works, which included railway station apostolate, a bookstand in the city centre and a retreat for non-Catholics. The Senatus was represented at the PPC weekend in Strasburg. Curia Darmstadt visit those who are been Confirmed. The Curia did extension in Otterstadt, Speyer Diocese.
The nine praesidia in the Korean Curia Frankfurt arranged the Baptism of 6 adults and one child, and held Advent retreats. Comitium Freiburg did extension in Hirschberg, Leutershausen and in Ludwigshafen Mundenheim. Curia Bodensee organised a retreat and runs 3 Patrician groups. Comitium Berlin had a stand at the diocesan World Youth day on 4 April 09. The Korean Curia has begun instruction of 6 adults for Baptism.
Cologne Regia: The new Dusseldorf Comitium gave its first quarterly report. A praesidium of 8 members in Essen Steele-Horst reported. 160 Korean legionaries attended an annual retreat. There is a new praesidium in Bochum Stiepel, which is attached to Essen Comitium. Both the new praesidia in Dortmund and Witten are working well. There is a new Vietnamese praesidium of 10 in Duesseldorf. The Regia was represented at the Church Evangelisation Day in Cologne.
Quarterly meetings with the officers of Curia Luxemburg are held by the Cologne Regia officers. Two officers from Luxembourg Curia attended the February Regia meeting and gave a report. There are two praesidia in the Curia.
The praesidia in Bogotol and Atschinsk are keeping in touch with Frankfurt Senatus and the latter praesidium is visiting the new praesidium in Bratsk. Three legionaries from the Senatus will visit Siberia for 12 days in September and a summer school for all 3 praesidia will be held.
Curia Zurich has 8 praesidia and 39 active members. 50 people from the Tamil community in Basel attended an information meeting. Curia Luzerne undertakes a restaurant apostolate.
Bata and Malabo Comitia both now correspond by email, which ensures correspondence is received regularly. Both councils are extending.
Douala Senatus and Yaounde Regia: 2,000 French Tesserae and 1,000 English Handbooks are being printed and will soon be available; this will greatly enhance their extension plans.
The newly appointed National Spiritual Director of the Legion by the Archbishop of Ouagadougou, Monsignor Campaore, is assisting in the development of the Legion in the country.
Brazzaville Regia comprises 26 praesidia, 19 Curiae and 7 Comitia. The Regia visits its upcountry councils and follows the Handbook in French and in Lingala.
The Legion comprises of a Comitium at Conakry and 10 Curiae throughout the country.
The Regia is making plans for the development of the Legion to Regia level at Bouaké in the centre and Korhogo in the north of the country.
Visit to Concilium by Officers of Belarus
On Sunday 20th September 2009, the Officers and Spiritual Director of Belarus Comitium attended the Concilium meeting. The President Marya Martynenko, Secretary Halina Kalevich, the translator Alena Kantratchyk and their Spiritual Director Rev. Fr. Yury Nakhodka had discussion on the development of the Legion in Belarus with the Concilium Officers on the previous day.
The Legion is now in every diocese in Belarus. The Legion was founded in Belarus in the early 1990’s and today consists of one Comitium with 10 senior and 1 junior Curiae and 7 praesidia affiliated. All Curiae have full Curia officerships. Curiae and praesidia are visited regularly and visitation is reported on at Comitium. Their apostolate includes Home and Hospital visitation, preparation for Confession, First Communion and other sacraments, contact in squares, streets, railway stations, religious instruction in an orphanage and Fr. Yury reported on giving retreats to juniors. Almost every praesidium does extension.
Marya, the President, thanked Our Lord and Our Blessed Lady for giving them the privilege of attending the Concilium meeting. Tommy McCabe, President of Concilium, thanked Fr. Yury and the officers for coming and spending a few days in Dublin and for their great spirit, courage and commitment to serve Our Blessed Lady. He also sent the Concilium’s best wishes to all legionaries in Belarus and looks forward to hearing about further development of the Legion in this country. Thanks were also expressed to Patricia O’Hara, the correspondent for Belarus.
Death of Cardinal Jean Margéot
“Our Father in Faith. Outstanding Servant of the Mauritian Nation”
So spoke the headlines of La Vie Catholique announcing the death of His Eminence Cardinal Jean Margéot of Mauritius at the age of 93. The Legion of Mary owes a great debt to the late Cardinal. Edel Quinn arrived in Mauritius on 22nd January 1940, and on April 28th held her first Curia meeting there for 19 newly founded praesidia. Archbishop Leen appointed his youngest priest as Spiritual Director of that Curia, Fr. Jean Margéot. He was a tower of strength to Edel and also a keen observer of her. His appreciation of her spirit is to be judged by the testimony, which he gave of her sanctity and heroic quality to the local tribunal of her Cause. His words echo the words of Frank Duff about her in an extraordinary way. His opinion of her and the movement she introduced is evidenced by his subsequent encouragement and support of the Legion during the rest of his long life. So much so that the Osservatore Romano in its list of important roles filled by the late Cardinal includes that of “animator of the Legion of Mary”.
A letter from Mme. Lorna Lamy, President of Port Louis Regia, tells of the sorrow of all the legionaries of Mauritius and Rodrigues at his passing, describing it as the loss of an indefatigable servant of the Lord and His Mother who, through his vision, introduced them into the universality of the church as a true pastor does. “It is a grateful nation, she adds, that renders homage and unceasing thanks to God for bestowing such a gift on us.”
May his great soul rest in peace.
Peregrinatio Pro Christo
Since the last Concilium meeting, teams have come home from Birmingham, Aberdeen, Preston, Milford Haven, Tooting, Oxford, Glasgow, Paisley and Soho. On the 19th September a team of 9 legionaries set out for the parish of the Immaculate Conception at the Surrey Docks. A team of 9 including a religious sister traveled in September to Koekelberg, Brussels for a project where local legionaries assisted them.
The Autumn Conference will take place in St. Patrick’s College, Drumcondra on Saturday 31st October.
Year of the Priest
Every Priest Needs the Legion - Mary Shall Reign by Frank Duff
“… The Legion is ideal as a priestly mechanism. It possesses the same outlook, the same methods, and - a very important thing - it has in it the element of correct and due subordination. Lay people realize their position in the Legion and conform to it completely and eagerly. I have not got to labour that point, because you who work in the Legion know it. It is a feature not invariably found in the lay societies. It would be hard to find a better means for the priest to express himself and to multiply himself. This notion of broadcasting himself is vital to the priestly function, not only because it is part of its essence, but as well by reason of the fewness of the priests in relation to the needs. It is also necessary psychologically, for an effective and smooth contact with people demands a mediating class, or what we might call an interpreting class, one sharing the point of view of both sides. It must have the priest’s outlook and yet belong to the people. It explains one to the other and forms the uniting link.”
Prayer for the Beatification of the Servant of God, Frank Duff
God our Father, You inspired your servant Frank Duff with a profound insight into the mystery of your Church, the Body of Christ, and of the place of Mary the Mother of Jesus in this mystery. In his immense desire to share this insight with others and in filial dependence on Mary he formed her Legion to be a sign of her maternal love for the world and a means of enlisting all her children in the Church’s evangelising work. We thank you Father for the graces conferred on him and for the benefits accruing to the Church from his courageous and shining faith. With confidence we beg you that through his intercession you grant the petition we lay before you
We ask too that if it be in accordance with your will, the holiness of his life may be acknowledged by the Church for the glory of your Name, through Christ Our Lord, Amen.
Favours attributed to the intercession of
The Servant of God, Frank Duff should be reported to:
Legion of Mary,
De Montfort House,
Morning Star Avenue,
North Brunswick Street,
Dublin 7, Ireland.