Montfort and the spirituality of a Rosary Confraternity

Anyone familiar with this original teaching will see the source from which St Louis Marie de Montfort drew to form his own True Devotion to Mary. We know from the Saint's own words, that what troubled him was that in his day there did not exist any true Rosary Confraternity. So he set himself about remedying the matter.



Dominican praise of de Montfort

Little wonder that the Provincial of the Dominican Order commended him, in this statement still in existence:

We, the Provincial of the Order of Preachers, do certify, that Louis Grignion de Monrfort, Brother of our Third Order, preaches everywhere and with much zeal, edification and fruit, the Confraternity of the Rosary in all the Missions which he gives continually in the towns and country places.


Frank Duff and the Legion of Mary

Once, when discussing this matter with the founder of the Legion of Mary, Frank Duff told me, that had he been aware of this background to the Rosary Confraternity, he would have made it the basis for the Legion spiriruality. The idea of beginning with a serious consecration and entrustment to Mary, and the concept of spirirual sharing and participating, are essential elements common to the Legion and to the Rosary Confraternity.


Enrichment and evangelization

Any Rosary group operating today, or, indeed, anyone who prays the Rosary, can only enhance their prayer by affiliation to the Confraternity. The apostolate of the Rosary is not limited to gathering more people in, but must reach out with a whole programme of spiritual enrichment and evangelisation.

Do not fear that in placing in Mary's hands the fruit of your works to be shared among others, you may lose out. You are dealing with a gracious Queen, who will treat you like the prince or princess you are. Blessed Alan de la Roche points out that since we are dealing with spiritual food, and not with material things, sharing with others does not mean loss. The more mouths there are for bodily bread the less there is to go round. The bread of heaven, on the other hand, kneaded with the yeast of faith, hope and love, increases the more it is divided.


Obligations of membership

1. To be affiliated, a person's name must be enrolled on the register in a church where the Confraternity has been established.

2. Members of the Rosary Confraternity are asked to say, at the very least, the complete round of fifteen decades within the week. To encourage a slower pace and a lingering rhythm, they are given the privilege of breaking up the decades any way they wish.

3. They must meditate or contemplate the mysteries to the best of their ability.


Privileges

1. The special protection of the Mother of God in life and at the hour of death.

2. A share in the prayers and good works of all the members worldwide.

3. Over and above the plenary indulgence granted to all who pray the Rosary in the family or in a group or religious community, there are special plenary indulgences for members of the Rosary Confraternity on the day of admission, on the feasts of Christmas, Easter, the Annunciation, the Assumption, the Immaculate Conception, the Presentation of Our Lord in the Temple.


Further information can be had from any Dominican priory or Rosary centre.

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