“We are at a time when we need the services of piuous Societies/devotional groups. Pious societies are going down and we need to rise up from our slumber. Devotional societies are one of the ways that the church have evangelized in the past. We must reach out in doing our works. There are places that Priests can never be. Devotees should ensure that they cover those places.
Don’t abandon your active works because of COVID-19, Catholic priests urge Legionaries
Timothy Agbor, Osogbo
Legion of Mary members in the Catholic Diocese of Osogbo have been admonished not to relent in carrying out their active legionary works of visitation owing to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Two Catholic priests gave this charge during the Acies Ceremony function of the Legion of Mary at St Mary’s Catholic Church, Ayetoro on Sunday, March 21, 2021.
Officers and members of Our Lady Divine Love Curia and Our Lady Queen of Mercy, Curia in Osogbo attended the function in their large number.
The legionaries gathered to renew their fealty to the Blessed Virgin Mary and also redidate themselves to their work of evangelization in outside the Catholic Church.
Addressing the members of the notable Pious Society, their Spiritual Director, Rev Fr Michael Odusanwo urged them not to abandon their active legionary works especially as the world is ravaged by the deadly coronavirus pandemic.
Fr Odusanwo, while commending the members’ efforts at ensuring that people get closer to God and honour Virgin Mary.
He reminded them of the message of Blessed Pope John Paul II that disclosed that the layfaithful can also strive to be saints.
Quoting the Pope’s message, the priest said “We need saints without cassocks, without veils – we need saints with jeans and tennis shoes. We need saints that go to the movies that listen to music, that hang out with their friends. We need saints that place God in first place ahead of succeeding in any career. We need saints that look for time to pray every day and who know how to be in love with purity, chastity and all good things. We need saints – saints for the 21st century with a spirituality appropriate to our new time.
“We need saints that have a commitment to helping the poor and to make the needed social change. We need saints to live in the world, to sanctify the world and to not be afraid of living in the world by their presence in it. We need saints that drink Coca-Cola, that eat hot dogs, that surf the internet and that listen to their iPods.
We need saints that love the Eucharist, that are not afraid or embarrassed to eat a pizza or drink a beer with their friends. We need saints who love the movies, dance, sports, theater. We need saints that are open sociable normal happy companions. we need saints who are in this world and who know how to enjoy the best in this world without being callous or mundane. We need saints.”
Speaking earlier, the Parish Priest of St Mary’s Catholic Church, Ayetoro, Osogbo, Rev Fr Benjamin Adebiyi commended legionaries for their efforts that have assisted increasing the Catholic Church spiritually and numerically.
Fr Adebiyi also urged them not to abandon their active legionary works of visiting people including the sick and the aged. The priest reminded them of the need to abide by the safety protocols against COVID-19 adding that they should always wear their mask and use sanitizers while carrying out their legionary works.
He asked them not to be discouraged and urged all pious societies in the church to be up and doing.
“Priests are engaged with parish administration and the administration for the parishioners. We can’t visit the sick without your help. Disturb your Priests to visit ailing parishioners and with more respect and service to the church, they will oblige you. Visit members of the Church. Visit the nominant members. Carry your priests along in your work.
“I want to sincerely appreciate all of you all for your dedication. Don’t forget the spirit of your mission. Don’t forget you are not going to comfort zone. Even some kind of approach you receive from some people will discourage you but don’t be discouraged. Protect yourselves. Use facemasks and sanitizers. God is with you, he will never leave you. Be wise. The Lord will surely support you and Mother Mary will never abandon you. Amen,” the priest prayed.
A Religious, Rev Sister Perpetual Aju had called on the legion members to always pray their rosaries and keep to their Legionary Promise.
Speaking on “The Spirit of The Legion,” Sister Aju emphasised the need for the devotees of the Blessed Virgin Mary to be spiritual deepened and imbibe with the Spirit of the legion.
The presidents of both Curia, Messrs Titus Hidan and Matthew Ola thanked members for turning up for the Acies Ceremony function and urged them to be active at their various praesidia.