27 Jul 2021

Legion of Mary

The Legion of Mary was founded in Dublin in September 1921 by Frank Duff who was born in Phibsboro, Dublin on 7th June 1889. He was the eldest of seven, two of whom died as children. He attended Belvedere and Blackrock College and was a gifted scholar. As a Civil Servant in the Department of Finance he devised a system of calculus which was subsequently adopted by the Treasury in London. He was a keen cyclist all his life. In 1913 he joined the St. Vincent de Paul Society and was affected by the poverty, hunger and squalor he witnessed.

On 7th September 1921, fifteen women, Fr. Michael Toher, C.C. St. Nicholas of Myra parish and Frank Duff met in Myra House, Francis Street, Dublin to discuss how they might better service the poor. The Legion of Mary was born. Since then it has spread all over the world with 4 million active members and 5 million auxiliary members.

The object of the Legion of Mary is the glory of God through the holiness of its members.

Here in Raheny Parish of Our Lady Mother of Divine Grace, Legionaries have been active for half a century. At one time there were two senior and two junior praesidia. Now there is one praesidium with ten members on roll and they would warmly welcome new members both male and female. The work done by the Legionaries is mainly home visitation and visiting the sick. Until recently we also ran the book-stall in the church on Sunday mornings.

The cause for the canonisation of the Servant of God Frank Duff was introduced by the Archbishop of Dublin, Cardinal Desmond Connell on Wednesday, January 14th 1998. Two other outstanding Legionaries on their way to sainthood are Venerable Edel Quinn and Alfie Lambe of Tullamore.