Legion of Mary?

Hi, I found out about the Legion of Mary from a pamphlet left in a Church. I’m not quite clear if this is a women only organization. What is the focus of the Legion? Thanks.

They were founded in Ireland in 1921 by Frank Duff.

The Legion of Mary is a lay apostolate with a major focus on the spiritual works of mercy.

There’s a nice Wikipedia article on them here, as well as their own website here.

There’s no gender restrictions; you just have to be a practicing Catholic. The basic unit is a praesidium, which is a group that regularly meets at the parish level. Then you have other units as well. If you were interested, you might find the contact for the praesidium in your parish, and try some of their meetings. There are various levels of membership, which come with various devotional commitments. A lot of their spirituality is very St. Louis de Montfort-based.

I was in the Legion of Mary until a year ago. It’s an excellent way to make spiritual progress, and to live out our baptismal promises. There was one man in our small group, plus our spiritual director who was a priest. I visited nursing homes each week with another member and my little daughter. Other members did catechis at non catholic schools. I really recommend joining. There are lots of rules but you can leave at any time if it doesn’t work for you. It will teach you to depend on Our Lady’s intercession for us. You will realise she never fails us even at the darkest moments. I left because it started to clash too much with other commitments (work and family).

I was a member of the Legion of Mary…and my son is currently an auxiliary member…its purpose is varied, but one of the ones with which I was most familiar was to bring Mary into close contact to shut-ins or individuals in hospital. No attempt is made to proselytize…however questions are answered honestly when opportunities arise…the primary purpose is to simply make such opportunities available, as well as to ensure no one is left in isolation during a time of need…


I have been an active member of the Legion of Mary for about two years now and what we do is meet every Thursday after 7.30 pm Mass. We then recite the Rosary then read out of the Hand Book of the Legion and have a discussion on what we read. Once that is done we then give out work to the members of the Praesidium. The work we do is to go around our Parish with a Rosary Statue which a house will keep for a week. We also do Hospital and Care Home Visitations and also go door to door where we would ask people if they have any questions about the Catholic Faith. This is my experience of the Legion of Mary and I have really enjoyed ever since joining.

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