ACIES 2022 - Memories
March 26, 2022 at Mater Dolorosa Catholic Church
Father Gabriel Wankar, Parochial Vicar of Our Lady of Mercy (Main Celebrant) with Fr. John Coleman (to his right), Spiritual Director at Saint Francis of Assisi and Fr. Lawrence Goode (to his left), Spiritual Director of the San Francisco Senatus and San Mateo Curie en Espanol.
Sister Lorna Garcia, President, San Mateo County Comitium addressing the Comitium body towards another year of service for the Church in the salvation of souls.
Reverend Father Lawrence Goode, Spiritual Director of the San Francisco Senatus, leads the Individual Act of Consecration, followed by Fr. Gabriel Wankar, Fr. John Coleman and seminarian and Legionary, Alphonse Tolenga.
Officers of the San Mateo County Comitium (from l-r): Sis. Julie Tabajonda (VP), Bro. Gil Mateo (Treasurer) and Sis. Lorna Garcia (President). Not in picture: Sis. Ivy Mecano (Secretary) and Fr. Cameron Pollette (Spiritual Director)
Message To Our Fellow Soldiers
The San Mateo County Comitium Board welcomes all of you to this year’s ACIES Ceremonies – we, the soldiers of Mary, gathering today, together as an army ready for battle for the salvation of souls! This year’s ceremonies come in the most unusual time in the history of the world. We are, with hope, coming towards the end tail of a pandemic. A pandemic that resulted into a great havoc in the lives of millions of people, including the lives of faithful Catholic men and women, who for a period were denied the reception of the Sacraments because of the shelter-in place orders mandated by world governments. Worse, for us in the Legion of Mary, this situation seemed to have taken aback many of our efforts that began one hundred years ago by our founder, Servant of God, Frank Duff. Many of us are still feeling the effects of the pandemic – Churches are half-full, as many of our Catholic brothers and sisters remain reluctant to attend the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass (in person), lukewarmness seem to be the pervading attitude towards participation in apostleship, many choosing to remain distant and nonchalant.
Our mission as members of the Legion of Mary is twofold: first, we, must be constant in our pursuit of personal holiness through prayer and by remaining steadfast and vigilant in our apostleship. We must be cognizant that we are in duty twenty-four hours a day and cannot relax our efforts for we are but a few soldiers, and the enemy never sleeps. As fear is the by-product of this pandemic, we ask all of you to pray for courage and strength – soldiers are heroes, not cowards, who would hide in the face of the enemy. Second, we must begin to replenish the army of our Lady, encouraging others to ‘enlist’ especially the youth. Words of encouragement can bring people in, but as Saint Francis has said, better if they see us in our actions, working silently but effectively to extend God’s Kingdom here and now. Therefore, we humbly request you, as your trusted officers, to invite fellow Catholics, faithful to its magisterial teachings and willing to die for the faith, into our active ranks. They too, should know of the Legion of Mary, ‘the Church’s secret weapon’ in its battle in crushing the head of the serpent. As we enter a new phase in the history of the Legion of Mary, and as we prepare the way for the next generation of Our Lady’s army, we must all be a shining example of the face of the TRUE Catholic Church. Yes, the TRUE Church that Christ has founded. A Church uncompromising of its doctrines. A Church with compassion and tender loving care, kindness and charity not by some-watered down Catholicism, but one that echoes the words of Jesus Christ – “the truth shall set you free.”
Thus, brothers and sisters in the Mystical Body of Christ, we summon you all today to bring the Gospel to all the ends of the earth. There are no other options left for us in the Church except that NOW is the time, the acceptable time, to make known to others, God’s love and mercy. Yes, that love that demands conversion of heart, turning away from sin. And yes, the mercy that Christ have reserved for the contrite of heart.
Finally, let us never forget that today’s Act of Consecration is not but a moment in time. No. Today’s words uttered with a sincere heart “I am all thine, my Queen my Mother, and all that I have is thine…” are meant to be lived daily in our lives through the humility of our own self-limitations, acknowledging always that we are nothing without God’s blessings and graces. And thus, in return to all these, we can only be but slaves unto death. This is what true devotion to Mary really means… self-mortification of time, relaxation and comfort in exchange of a life of service for others. Thank you!
San Mateo County Comitium Board of Officers