Sodality Chapters in the United States
The following are active members of the Sodality of Our Lady, under the direction of the
Father Director of the Sodality:
St. Francis in Illinois
Our Lady of Guadalupe (Ric Donnelly) in Indiana
(Holy Mass offered at this site during the year)
A NOTED MEMBER OF THE
SODALITY OF OUR LADY
one you should know and emulate!
Many are unaware of the brutal events that took place in Catholic Mexico during the 1920's. A fierce persecution of the Roman Catholic Church was underway. Hundreds of priests, religious, and laity were martyred for the practice of the Catholic religion, for attending and offering Mass, and for the administration of the Sacraments. Churches were closed and confiscated, Catholic properties were placed under the control of the government, foreign clergy were expelled from the country. Members of the Sodality of Our Lady continued to defend the rights of the Church in Mexico, and also published numerous materials in defense of the Catholic faith. One of the most noted members of the Sodality of Our Lady was Anacleto Flores:
ANACLETO FLORES: a famous member of the Sodality of Our Lady who actually did more than just talk:
he died for the holy Catholic faith!
"The Mexican, Anacleto Flores, a lawyer, writer, orator, devoted himself entirely during the persecution to the publication and secret distribution of Catholic writings. Three of his presses were confiscated; ten times he was arrested and thrown into prison; finally, after being savagely tortured, he was put to death. Like him, in the same persecution and for the same reason, fell young Jose Valencia Gallardo, himself editor of a secret journal, and the typographer, John Emanuel Bonilla. They were, par excellence, the martyrs of the press in modern Sodalities...as others had been in those of the 17th century."
Taken from: "History of the Sodalities of Our Lady."
The chapters of the Sodality in the United States are all placed under the title of the Immaculate Conception.
What is the SODALITY OF OUR LADY?
The Sodality of Our Lady, an association formed by the Society of Jesus and approved by the Holy See, is a religious body which aims at fostering in its members an ardent devotion, reverence and filial love towards the Blessed Virgin Mary, and through this devotion and the protection of so good a Mother, it seeks to make the faithful, gathered together under her name, good Catholics sincerely bent on sanctifying themselves, each in his own state of life, and zealous, as far as their condition in life permits, to save and sanctify their neighbor and to defend the Church of Jesus Christ against the attacks of the wicked. ( Article I of the Common Rules for Sodalities of Our Lady)
The Sodality of the Blessed Virgin Mary meets for meetings at Our Lady of the Holy Rosary Chapel, 205 Fulton Street, Elgin IL.
IDEALS OF THE SODALITY
- PERSONAL HOLINESS- -CATHOLIC ACTION-
The Sodality of Our Lady is a religious body which aims at fostering in its members an ardent devotion, reverence and filial love towards the Blessed Virgin Mary, and through this devotion and the protection of so good a Mother, it seeks to make the faithful, gathered together under her name, good Catholics sincerely bent on sanctifying themselves, each in his own state of life, and zealous, as far as their condition in life permits, to save and sanctify their neighbor and to defend the Church of Jesus Christ against the attacks of the wicked.
The above is the first and primary rule of the Sodality and sets forth its essential aims: personal holiness and Catholic Action; including work for the salvation and sanctification of one's neighbor, and the spread and defense of the Church. The Sodality is a society whose members realize that religion is not merely a subject for the class-room or the pulpit, but a life that must be lived.
The Sodality is the link between Catholic education and Catholic action. It demands of its member's personal interest in their faith and the realization that, as Catholics, they have the obligation of sharing wonderfully great gifts with others.
The Sodality is an organization devoted to a full Catholic life. It is concerned first and foremost with the personal holiness of its members. Then it demands of its members lives of apostolic zeal. Personal holiness is essential. The Sodality believes that apostles who are not themselves good are simply a peril to the Church and a lie to the world. It knows that a person can do little good for others if he be not himself good. We cannot give others a love of God unless we love God. We cannot preach purity with impure lips. So the Sodality insists on personal holiness. It offers to its members as the vital springs of personal holiness the love of the world's two most important persons, Christ and His Mother. Loyalty to Christ, the Son of Mary, especially in His Presence in the Blessed Sacrament, is fundamental in the Sodality. Then, as the Sodalist seeks the one person who perfectly served Christ, his eyes fall upon Mary. He determines to serve Christ as Mary did. Under her patronage the Sodalist builds the noble edifice of his spiritual life. Because of Mary purity is an essential Sodality virtue. Respect for womanhood is inevitable in the life of one who has looked with love upon the supreme type of womanhood. The girl knows that in Christ's eyes she is really another Mary. The young man knows that he must prove himself worthy of the Mother who has accepted him as her son.United to these two fundamental devotions is the devotion to the patron saint of the particular Sodality. For each Sodality has a secondary patron (Mary, under some special title, is always its primary patron); it chooses some noble hero or heroine of God for its second model. Upon Christ, Our Lady and their patron saint the Sodalists model their personal holiness. Consequently, a life beyond the ordinary is expected of them.
They are not to be commonplace Catholics. They are to be Catholics who serve the King generously, honor the Queen Mother with deep affection and follow the difficult footsteps of God's heroes and heroines. Mary is the Mediatrix of All Grace, distributing with generous hand the graces, which her Son has merited for all mankind. Sodalists in their life of Catholic Action co-operate with their Queen and Patroness in bringing grace into the lives of others. They are the servants of grace.
A Real Sodalist is a Real Catholic
"We thought of the Sodality when we embraced with our mind and our heart the great work to be done and voiced the summons -we were about to say paternal cry- for help and cooperation, denominating all these activities 'precious auxiliaries of Catholic Action'."
Pope Pius XI speaking on Catholic Action, March 30, 1930
The Sodalist strives to imitate Mary in her devoted following of Christ. The Liturgy, the study of the Mass, mental and vocal prayer, retreats...deepen the personal study of Christ, and especially devotion to the Blessed Sacrament and filial love of God's mother are what a member of the Sodality strives to do.
Some noted members of the Sodality of Our Lady
St. Frances DeSales
Pope Pius XII
General Franco (of Spain)
St. Francis Xavier Cabrini
President Garcia Moreno (Ecuador)
(more to follow)
A simple Catholic’s view of the Sodality of Our Lady
The Sodality of Our Lady simply put is a group of Catholic men and women who are companions to the Mother of God. We are, in effect, at Her service for the good of the Church and Her Son. To quote the Sodalist’s manual, the Sodality “turns isolated human beings into members of the Holy Family, since with Mary for our Mother, Christ at once becomes our brother, and with renewed faith we acknowledge God as our beloved Father.”
We enter into a communion of members in the Church Militant directed towards the proper ends of our faith below the all-important adoration of God. These are the salvation of our souls, aid in the salvation of our brethren’s souls, and for the good of the Church in the world. The Sodality is Catholic Action in its truest and most reverent form.
As a former communist and agitator for socialist causes, I see a profound and fundamental difference between the Sodality and left-wing agitation. The Sodality is no cheap and tawdry form of social agitation. For us God is the ultimate end. For the left, revolution is the ultimate. The distinction between the two is important, especially in these dark times of Vatican II where the supernatural is secondary to a type of socialist agitation perpetrated by Newchurch members. The sacrifice of Newchurch to a global, socialist agenda continues the eventual overthrow of the True Faith and the destruction of national sovereignty of nations that those who pull the strings behind the scenes so desperately desire.
Communists are internationalists who agitate for the eventual revolutionary overthrow of the capitalist State and replacement of authority within the State by a vanguard of ideologues. The means of revolution is through the working class led by this vanguard of Party members and intellectuals. The working class is too stupid to realize its own end, so this vanguard retains the purity of the Marxist ideal. The result is bloody violence and the slaughter of the enemies of Communism.
Communism is an inversion of the Church and diabolically apes the concepts of hierarchy, authority, and dogma. The revolutionary Party protects its power through violence and intimidation. Those who deviate from the true “religion” of the Communist Party are called “petty bourgeois,” reactionaries, or counter-revolutionaries. They are in essence heretics to that godless faith. Communists deal with heretics harshly; they murder them in a brutal manner, often killing all family members, associates and acquaintances of these “heretics.”
Socialists are globalists also want a bloodless revolution of sorts. According to their principal ideologue the Italian communist Antonio Gramsci, they seek, what he called, “the long march through the institutions,” whereby society would appear to remain intact, but through effective and precise pressure at certain points, those Lenin called “contradictions” in the capitalist system, the system would change into a socialist State. We are seeing this in the times of Obama, but the process had begun decades before his presidency.
Douglas Hyde, a convert from Communism to Catholicism, wrote Dedication and Leadership for Catholics to help waken them to the single-minded devotion Communists have to their Party and the cause of Marxism. Their fanaticism spread throughout the world. Its brutal leadership, nearly all Jews, directed its most diabolical hatred toward Catholics and other Christians within the various nations they dominated.
Today, too many people blithely dismiss the Communist threat saying that the Soviet Empire fell, thanks to John Paul II, or Ronald Reagan, or Margaret Thatcher, or a mixture of these. Not so. Communism is a tendency of a greater ancient evil: Satan. It is an means of the “Synagogue of Satan” to destroy Western society and culture, and the Holy Catholic Faith. Our Lord spoke against this diabolical conspiracy throughout the Gospels. His words were taken up by the Apostles, the Fathers of the Church, various Saints, Councils, and Popes (of course, condemnation of the synagogue is lacking today as “our elder brothers in the faith” are welcomed with open arms. We must not forget, though, that Abel’s elder brother murdered him.)
Nevertheless, the diabolical nature of the synagogue takes on the form of Communism, and if the times dictate against it, the enemy slinks away and creates a nuisance elsewhere, by proclaiming a “democratic” socialism, or some other sleight-of-hand nonsense, though remaining essentially the same, essentially evil in its rebellion against nations and more importantly the Catholic Church.
As Catholics, we are called to be soldiers for Christ. Pope Leo XIII understood the dangers lurking in the world, the seductions waiting to destroy the faithful and the Church. He said, in paraphrase, that Catholics are built to be soldiers, echoing Job, who claimed life was warfare, and St. Paul in Ephesians, who spoke of the spiritual battle.
These times are among the direst in the history of our Church. The call for soldiers has gone out, but few enlist in the supernatural army of Our Lady. This is shameful because She calls us to defend the Faith of Her Son. The Sodality of Our Lady is such an army of Catholic souls risen up to defend Holy Church, Our Holy Mother, and Her Most Holy Son. To the defense of such a precious treasure, how could any of us say no?
In Hyde’s book, he marveled at the number of fallen away Catholics who became devout and dedicated Communists. He found that the zeal, so misplaced in the service of the adversary, resulted from the lack of work in the faith. Instead of true Catholic Action, these men and women usually were consigned to putting up and taking down folding chairs, and doing other menial labor in parishes.
Initially, their desire was great to build up the Church, Satan came, used their labor, and tore down their souls. Instead of falling on fertile ground, their zeal fell on rock and was seized by ravening birds. Instead of Christ, they served Satan. He was more appealing because he touched a temporal chord in them: service to humanity. The supernatural element of man was denied. The communist recruit used this misplaced zeal to evil ends. It was not that they were innocent men and women, for they obviously were poorly formed (a big problem today among Catholics, especially the youth who are easily seduced because of a faith that is mainly based on emotions and feelings rather than the solidity of dogma and doctrine. Of course, with newchurch the desire is to form syncretistic youth who believe one is as good as another when it comes to faith.)
This in no way suggests that Communists are merely do-gooders who go astray. They are vicious, wicked men and women. The Christian elements who are seduced often blind themselves to the bloodiness of the cause and work instead try to distinguish the good from the bad, for solidarity, for humanity, for equality, and all other revolutionary ideals that seem to want to make the world a better place. However, within evil there is no good.
The work of the Sodality becomes even more urgent given this need in the young breast for idealism and good works. Stropped on the leather of dogma and doctrine, built up as Catholic soldiers, directed toward the ends of the Church in the world, and cognizant of the world’s dangers and the authority for whom we fight, young people must be formed as soldiers of Christ through the army of Our Lady with whom we are companions in battle.
The Sodality of Our Lady is a means of keeping Her company, too, in these trying times, as She tries to restrain Her Son’s arm of justice that soon will fall, as She has warned in private revelations. With Her, we keep the faith and fight the good fight, as St. Paul said.
All this does not mean we pile into a van and seek out heretics or Jews to hector and abuse! Rather, since Father is the director of the Sodality, we must work for building up the Sodality of Our Lady. He has plans for the Sodality, and even tangential works of lesser importance are necessary for building up the apostolate. Before any battle is undertaken, though, we individual Catholics must build up our armament. This is best done through frequent attendance at the Sacraments, vigorous and constant prayer, fasting and abstinence, and almsgiving (yes, Father is not the Fed, he cannot mysteriously create money out of thin air as the Fed does; his work costs money! It is our obligation to God to give, not that He is in need, but we show Him our charitable love for Him, as Malachias tells us.)
When the Sodality initiates its plans and calls us into battle, and we go willingly, we are enlisted for the duration. For as long as we war, we fight for Our Lady, Her Son, The Church, and for Heaven. We are the “Militia of the heavenly army,” and not, as Vatican II’s deception has called us, “the multitude of the heavenly choirs.” We are built to fight, not to sing while Rome burns!
Why we must FIGHT!
I feel it’s a grave, grave error for those of us who believe we are traditional Catholics not to fight completely for our Faith. When we breathe our last, give up the ghost, and stand before the Most Holy God, how will we answer Him when He asks, “Did you do your all for Me?”
Many are like me, fallen away Catholics returned to the Faith solely by God’s most kind graces. We are given time on earth to atone in ways that can help restore and build up His Church and to bring charity to others in order that their souls might be saved. Not that we can save, but we, as members of the Church Militant, a remnant remaining of the true Faith, can spread the good word of Christ and teach directly or through example the beautiful treasures we possess through His love that is our Faith. We can enter the daily battle for our souls and for the good of our Church.
The enemy occupies the buildings, their rotting cadavers haunt the sanctuaries and fool the world’s masses of people into believing that what they spew is the Catholic Faith. They offer watered down sacraments of new and strange gods, deny timeless dogma, and possibly don’t even believe in God, but accept another god that is more palatable, more in tune with the spirits of the time, the spirits of the world. We know what they have is not the Catholic Faith, but what do we do about it? Often, too little. What can we do? We can do great things for our Lord because He will never abandon us.
Why do we not act as Catholic men and women? Sure, we can attend the Sacraments, the most important personal expressions of faith to lead our souls to salvation. Without them, we are lost. What more can we offer to Him?
What do we do after Mass? Do we go home from Mass and attend to our business of daily life that slowly draws us from our zeal until we’re just like all others, forgetting the alpha and omega of our being, the summit of our salvation, and the hope of our glory? Do we invest ourselves in the world to the point where the supernatural graces received slowly wind down in us? Is this not the operation of some infernal agency that is stronger than we are if we are not vigilant, sober, and watchful? We are strengthened tremendously by the Sacraments, but being still in the flesh we are mortal, sinful men and women who succumb to the world’s allure.
Again, what are we to do? We…must…FIGHT!
We fight for the Faith through our love of Christ, His Mother (and ours) and His Holy Church. The Sodality of Our Lady is a perfect vehicle for battle against the powers and principalities, against the prince of this world. The Sodality is our means of companionship with our Mother for His greater glory. Through the Sodality we can create the social expression of our Faith in the world. It’s TRUE Catholic Action, not some sleazy socialist agitation to build temporal membership in an infernal Party.
There are so many venues in which to express the burning love we have for our Church. Some things are necessary for success. In particular, the formation and ordination of new priests, who are forged in the fires of seminaries that burn in love of God and Faith, who go forth with the Word and establish chapels in areas that are lost to the enemy. Second, we need a company of men and women who not only marry but rear true Catholic children that they form completely in the Faith. Third, we need proper catechesis and education of others who are lost in darkness but who desire the Light. Fourth, we need to bring our love of Holy God to the lost, the sick, the dying, the elderly, the hopeless, and spread the Good News that they are not forgotten, that God loves them, that He has sent us to be with them. Fifth, we need communication with the lost to continually remind them of God’s presence in the Sacraments of Holy Church. Sixth, we need men and women who make substantial offerings of money to make these things happen while building up the Kingdom of God; these need to be men and women who can establish Catholic businesses and non-profits who can train others in economic self-sufficiency through Catholic subsidiarity. Seventh…and this is so difficult, we need strong, vital clergy, religious and bishops who can administer the Sacraments, establish chapels, and keep us on track so we can fight the evil one and his forces and not our own. Eighth, and even more difficult, we need strong men and women of the remnant who can live their Catholic Faith 24 hours a day, 365 days a year (here I must confess my own imperfection in this necessity.)
For the last one, we need to remain in good and loving contact with one another, which through the Internet is more easily possible than in any other time in history, especially for individuals separated from one another and from a traditional chapel.
We need to fight for our Church and if we do not we will pay and suffer the consequences of our inaction. How do we begin? We begin by prayer, especially the Rosary, the Sacraments, fasting, reading about the Saints who suffered for the Faith, and by membership in the Sodality of Our Lady.
A caveat: we are not trying to develop another socialist ‘Catholic’ Worker Movement, Sillon, or some pseudo-socialist agency. Because we burn with zeal and love of Holy God and Holy Church, we work to build up His Kingdom on earth and invite all men and women through the gates of Heaven so they may win their own salvation through the Truth. The Sodality appears to be that proper vehicle.
( a member of the Sodality of Our Lady)