A ZENIT DAILY DISPATCH
Founded in 13th Century
VATICAN CITY, 14 JUNE 2006 (ZENIT)
Here is the description of Militia Christi which appears in the Directory of International Associations of the Faithful, published by the Pontifical Council for the Laity.
* * *
Official name: Militia Christi
Acronym: MJC (Militia of Jesus Christ)
History: MJC was founded in 1209, influenced by St. Dominic and the Dominican friars. Encouraged across the centuries by numerous popes, it developed as an order of chivalry whose members, courageous faithful members of the laity, placed themselves at the service of the Church to defend the faith.
In 1870, the chivalrous Order of the Militia of Jesus Christ was reorganized in Rome around a group of papal officials assisted by the master general of the Dominicans, and with the encouragement of Pope Pius IX, to relaunch the spirit of the ancient institution directing its members toward creating the Kingdom of God in society.
During the period of reform between 1959 and 1973, the order was transformed into an association of the faithful and its purposes were geared to meeting the needs of the lay apostolate according to the teachings of the Second Vatican Council.
On Nov. 21, 1981, the Pontifical Council for the Laity decreed recognition of the Milice de Jesus Christ as an international association of the faithful of pontifical right.
Identity: MJC is open to membership by lay men and women from all backgrounds and states of life, who wish to commit themselves individually and as an association to fostering the spirit of faith and Christian values in the world.
Its members live the evangelical counsels according to their specific state of life and in a renewed spirit of chivalry, practicing works of doctrinal and ecumenical education, Marian piety and social justice.
In order to support these three areas of action, MJC has three departments, each led by a director:
— the Department of Truth, which guarantees the formation of its members based on Thomist philosophy and theology, by teaching and guidance toward reliable sources;
— the Department of the Rosary, which corresponds to the Marian vocation of the association and fuels the interior life and the piety of the individual members, through spiritual retreats, prayer vigils and moments of meditation;
— the Department of Hospitality, which not only guarantees mutual assistance among the members and organizes hospitality for them at meetings and chapters, but more particularly to support and promote works of solidarity and charity which are inseparable from evangelization.
Organization: MJC is governed by the master general, elected for nine years and who may serve more than one term, assisted by an assistant general, who has responsibility for making decisions on the life of the association.
The assistant general is assisted by the magistral council comprising the general secretary, the provincial leaders, the departmental directors, and members appointed pro tempore.
The ecclesiastical ordinary is the archbishop of Sens (France). Membership of MJC is divided into affiliated members, committed members, and consecrated members.
The affiliated members are persons who live the spirituality of the association without being bound to it; committed members bind themselves in a sequence of stages to the spirit of service and militancy specific to the chivalrous vocation and Dominican spirituality; consecrated members vow to live the evangelical counsels of poverty and chastity in a special way according to their specific state of life, or the demands of special obedience to the Pope and to defend Our Lady, taking one or more temporary vows and subsequently final vows.
The members are grouped together in houses headed by local delegates. Houses in the same country constitute a province, which is entrusted to the provincial delegate.
Membership: MJC has 506 members in nine countries, in Africa, Europe, the Middle East, North America and South America.
Works: The association manages the Opere Militia Christi for solidarity between the provinces and for the support of charitable projects; the Parrains pour Ie Liban initiative to provide aid for young Lebanese students from poor families; the Marie porte du Ciel initiative working in Brazil for evangelization, the construction of a shrine, and the provision of palliative care.
Publications: Militia Christi, published in French three times a year
Web site: www.militia-christi.org
Milice de Jesus-Christ
c/o Michel Quatre
22, avenue des Etats-Unis
78000 Versailles — France
Tel. (33) 1-30213510 — Fax 1-30211071
© Copyright 2006 — Libreria Editrice Vaticana [adapted]
This article has been selected from the ZENIT Daily Dispatch
© Innovative Media, Inc.
ZENIT International News Agency
Via della Stazione di Ottavia, 95
00165 Rome, Italy
To subscribe http://www.zenit.org/english/subscribe.html
or email: email@example.com with SUBSCRIBE in the "subject" field