Saint Benedict Center's main site is An online Journal edited by the Slaves of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, Richmond, New Hampshire.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

The Third Order has been Hard at Work!

Br. John Marie Vianney

It is a little difficult to realize that the Feast of the Purification marked the second year of my prefecture. Time flies! The Third Order has not been idle.

We have added a monthly quiz to our regular monthly business meeting on the First Saturday of the month. This lighter part of the meeting helps to foster Brother Francis’ philosophy that what we do intellectually as a school should not be all work, but fun as well.

We have renewed the apostolate of the Pilgrim Virgin Statue, which belongs to the Third Order. Right now, the statue is touring the Richmond, NH area. Families keep the statue for a week and say the rosary before it. The statue will be going across the country later in the year.

We began a formation program for tertiaries, which has the hallmark of assigning seasoned mentors to guide candidates through the matriculation process. The program was in the planning and pilot stages for more than a year.

We began a regular pro-life witness program. On the third Saturday of every month, Third Order members (and whoever else wishes to join them) go to the local Planned Parenthood Center in Keene to offer prayers of reparation for the evil work being performed inside its walls. Not only are birth control pills and devices dispensed at this center, but also the abortifacient “morning after” pill. Mothers are given the tools at this facility to kill their pre-born babies.

We have rejuvenated the Circles of Study program by establishing a new website for the Saint Augustine Institute ( The regular business of the Third Order is also published on the SAI website. The circles will be a natural gateway into the Third Order for those who see the value in cultivating a Catholic culture as a united group.

We would also like our Third Order members to make use of the Center’s website, Daily news updates, columns, and articles appear on the home page. Inside the site there is a wealth of Catholic information for family use, personal use, and circle use. The Center has put countless hours of work into creating this site. Take advantage of it. It is easy to navigate once you get used to the headings and related topics. It also has a search engine where you can locate any of hundreds of articles published by SBC.

Our team of officers and directors work hard all year for the good of the order and the crusade to convert America. Our board of officers includes Tertiaries: Br. Michael Maria, Membership Director; Br. Joseph Mary, Local Director; Br. John the Baptist, Financial Secretary; Br. Joseph Mary, Treasurer; Br. Louis Marie, Recorder; and Br. Lawrence Mary, Mentoring Director.

As prefect, my hope is to see every tertiary in a Circle of Studies, even if they have already received their diploma. Veteran graduates of SAI can greatly enhance the quality of circle meetings.

During this year I hope to speak directly with as many Third Order members as I can contact. It would be wonderful for those tertiaries who live anywhere near the monastery to make an annual visit to Saint Benedict Center here in Richmond.

What else can we do to please Our Lord? Remember, February was the month of the Holy Passion of Our Lord. Dedicate yourself to making a good Lent. March is the Month of Saint Joseph. We ought not to forget the greatest of all saints after the Blessed Mother. The foster-father of Our Lord is venerated by the Church with the cultus of protodulia, first among the saints. Our Lady is actually venerated on a plane all her own, with the worship of hyperdulia, beyond all angels and saints. The veneration given to God in Three Persons is that of adoration, or latria, which is divine worship. Br. André Marie, our prior, has a beautiful entry on his Theology Blog on Saint Joseph, the Holy Patriarch of Nazareth, the Patron and Protector of Holy Mother Church. To read this wonderful article go to The Litany of St. Joseph is also on that web page.

Please remember, my brothers and sisters, as tertiaries we are part of an order. (Anyone interested in joining the Third Order should contact our Membership Director at It’s a very special order. Being a member should result in firm commitment, obedience, and loyalty, in addition to single-mindedness, constancy, and perseverance in pursuit of the goals of our crusade. Being a member signifies one’s willingness to work as part of a team toward the team’s common goals. In unity there is strength.

Being part of an order, it is hoped, will insure the personal sanctification and devotion to Our Lady that were a part of your Consecration.1

Even though we are active laymen and women, as Third Order members, we should strive to cultivate a taste for the contemplative spirit. This is the counsel of the saints for all the faithful. Prayer and meditation are necessary for all members of the Church Militant.

Our crusade also needs people motivated to be active evangelizers and docile enough to commit to a period of training and study. A nation cannot be converted on zeal alone, without knowledge. Ours is a special formation, and Brother Francis, although no longer actively teaching, is our exemplar. Listening to his recorded talks on tape or CD is the most excellent way to learn the language and the art of evangelization. You will not find a better teacher anywhere. Isn’t it time for you to join this crusade?

Email Brother John Marie Vianney at

1. Anyone can make his Consecration to Our Lord through Our Lady. You do not have to join the Third Order to do that, but making your Consecration is a prerequisite to becoming a tertiary in our order.

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