After 100 years, Legion of Mary still vital

The Legion of Mary is marking the centennial of its organization, established to help the world recover from physical and spiritual trauma.

Bishop David Zubik led a 100th Anniversary Mass of Thanksgiving on Sunday, October 3 at Epiphany Church, part of Divine Mercy Parish in Pittsburgh. The Mass included a Eucharistic Procession and Rosary.

In his homily, Bishop Zubik recalled the beginning of the Legion of Mary, founded by Frank Duff, a group of women and a priest in Dublin, Ireland, in 1921.

“The world was trying to heal from the wounds of the first World War,” he said. “And while people looked for ways to reestablish their homes, to look for new avenues of peace, to find opportunities for the economy of the world to get back on its feet, Mr. Duff saw there was another reality that was even more important—the ways in which what is in our hearts and what is in our souls might in fact be strengthened and be fed by the power of God’s grace.”

The Legion of Mary is a lay apostolic association of several million Catholics in more than 170 countries. It sees as its priority the spiritual and social welfare of each individual. Members participate in the life of their parishes through visitation of the sick—both in their homes and in hospitals—of families, and through collaboration in every apostolic and missionary undertaking sponsored by parishes.

In the Diocese of Pittsburgh, the first official praesidium, or basic unit, was established in 1947 at Saint Stephen Parish in Hazelwood. It was entitled “Our Lady of Fatima.” At the Mass last Sunday, Annette Bentivegna served as October Queen, crowing the statue of Our Lady of Fatima.

Carol Scherer continues to chair the Mass of Thanksgiving.

Meanwhile, the week-long Pittsburgh Rosary Congress, which included the Legion of Mary Eucharistic Procession, concludes with Mass at 7 pm Friday, October 8th at Saint Anthony Chapel on Pittsburgh’s Troy Hill.

Bishop Zubik leads the Rosary following Mass celebrating the centennial of the Legion of Mary.