Before Vatican II

The Legion of Mary is a lay movement. One is a legionary of the faith because one is “baptized,” and not because one has received ordination as a member of the hierarchy.

The main ideas of the Legion of Mary have inspired the founders of FIAT. On the basis of this inspiration, they found one another.  Veronica O’Brien crossed the English Channel just before the beginning of the Second World War, in order to found new branches of the Legion of Mary and in order to encourage the existing branches already on the Continent.

She found in the auxiliary bishop of Malines (and later Cardinal Archbishop of Malines), Leo Joseph Suenens, an ally to theologically underpin the apostolate of the Legion of Mary.

Bishop Suenens had chosen as his Episcopal motto: “In Spiritu Sancto;” and he recognized in the invitation of Veronica O’Brien to write a book, as a theological companion to the Manual of the Legion of Mary, an invitation of the Holy Spirit. So the book The Theology of the Apostolate came into existence.