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Confraternity

Admission to the Confraternity of the Immaculate Conception
and Investiture with the Blue Scapular

The rite of admission to the Confraternity and investiture with the Blue Scapular described below should be performed by a Marian priest or deacon (usually, the Local Confraternity Promoter) or a member of the clergy delegated by the Marians. If at all possible, it should be carried out in a communal celebration.

For the rite of blessing and conferral the scapular itself must be used, made of prescribed design and material: Only afterwards may a blessed medal replace the scapular.

In his homily, the Promoter or the person presiding over the ceremony ought to briefly explain the spiritual dimension of membership in the Confraternity. Since the Blue Scapular is a sign approved by the Church and one of its sacramentals, he should also emphasize its significance, point out the obligations ensuing from its acceptance, and mention the graces enjoyed by those who worthily wear it.

ORDER OF ADMISSION AND INVESTITURE

INTRODUCTORY RITES

When the people or simply the members of the confraternity have gathered, the celebrant enters during the singing of a hymn suited to the particular celebration. After the singing, the celebrant says:

In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.

All make the sign of the cross and reply:

Amen.

The celebrant greets those present in the following words.

Through the Son, born of Mary, every blessing comes to us from God our Father. May His grace and peace be with you all.

All reply:

And with your spirit.

In the following words, the celebrant prepares those present for the admission and the blessing.

God uses ordinary things as signs to express His extraordinary mercy toward us. Through simple things as well we express our gratitude, declare our willingness to serve God, and profess the resolve to live up to our baptismal consecration.

The Blue Scapular is the sign of entrance into the Marian Fathers’ Confraternity of the Immaculate Conception of the Most Blessed Virgin Mary. This scapular thus expresses our intention of sharing in the spirituality of the Congregation of Marian Fathers. That intention renews our baptismal resolve to put on Christ with the help of Mary Immaculately Conceived, whose own greatest desire is that we become more like Christ in praise of the Trinity, until, dressed for the wedding feast, we reach our home in heaven.

READING OF THE WORD OF GOD

A reader, one of those present, or the celebrant reads a text of sacred Scripture, taken either from the readings in the Lectionary for Masses in honor of Our Lady or one of the following excerpts.

Brothers and sisters, listen to the words of the Prophet Isaiah: (Is 61:9-11)

Their offspring shall be renowned among the nations, and their descendants in the midst of the peoples; All who see them shall acknowledge them: They are offspring the Lord has blessed.

I will rejoice heartily in the Lord, my being exults in my God; For he has clothed me with garments of salvation, and wrapped me in a robe of justice. Like a bridegroom adorned with a diadem, as a bride adorns herself with her jewels. As the earth brings forth its shoots, and a garden makes its seeds spring up, So will the Lord God make justice spring up, and praise before all the nations.

The word of God.

All reply:

Thanks be to God.

• OR •

Brothers and sisters, listen to the words of the Letter of St. Paul to the Ephesians: (Eph 4:17, 20-24)

So I declare and testify in the Lord that you must no longer live as the Gentiles do, in the futility of their minds; that is not how you learned Christ, assuming that you have heard of him and were taught in him, as truth is in Jesus, that you should put away the old self of your former way of life, corrupted through deceitful desires, and be renewed in the spirit of your minds, and put on the new self, created in God’s way in righteousness and holiness of truth.

The word of God.

All reply:

Thanks be to God.

After the reading, the celebrant gives the homily.

INTERCESSIONS

The intercessions are then said. The celebrant introduces them and an assisting minister or the one of those present announces the intentions.

Celebrant: Relying on the intercession of the Virgin Mary Immaculately Conceived, who by the power of the Holy Spirit gave the World our flesh, so that we might share in the grace of our firstborn brother and live for the glory of God, let us pray to the Father, saying:
All: God, grant that we may put on Christ.

Reader: Father, you willed to have your beloved Son take on our humanity, so that in Him we might share in Your own life; grant that we may be called and truly be Your children. For this we pray.
All: God, grant that we may put on Christ.

Reader: You wished Christ to be in every respect like us, but without sin, so that in following Him we might share in His filial image; grant that we may follow Christ so as to please You in all things. For this we pray.
All: God, grant that we may put on Christ.

Reader: You call those who are clothed in the wedding garment of the kingdom to the feast of Your grace, where You reveal Yourself to them; teach us to serve you loyally. For this we pray.
All: God, grant that we may put on Christ.

Reader: You clothe us with the robe of righteousness and holiness, so that though the Holy Spirit we may live for You. Show forth the holiness of Your Church and through Christ make us grow in holiness, so that we may work together generously for the salvation of others. For this we pray.
All: God, grant that we may put on Christ.

Reader: You continually bestow on us in Christ every spiritual blessing, until, clothed in the wedding garment, we go out to meet Christ at His coming; grant that through the prayers of Mary we may pass from death to life. For this we pray.
All: God, grant that we may put on Christ.

PRAYER OF BLESSING

With outstretched hands, the celebrant continues:

O God, the author and perfecter of all holiness, You call all who are reborn of water and the Holy Spirit to the fullness of the Christian life and the perfection of charity. Look with kindness on those who will join today the Confraternity of the Immaculate Conception and who will devoutly receive the Blue Scapular in honor of the Blessed Virgin Mary Immaculately Conceived. As long as they live, let them become sharers in the image of Christ Your Son and, after they have fulfilled their mission on earth with the help of Mary, the Virgin Mother, receive them into the joy of Your heavenly home. We ask this through Christ our Lord.
All: Amen.

ADMISSION TO THE CONFRATERNITY

Those to be admitted into the Confraternity approach the altar and remain standing.

Celebrant: Our help is in the name of the Lord.
All: Who made heaven and earth.

C. Lord, hear my prayer.
All: And let my cry come to You.

C. The Lord be with you.
All: And with your spirit.

C. Let us pray.
O God, who by the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin prepared a worthy dwelling for your Son, grant, we pray, that, as you preserved her from every stain by virtue of the Death of your Son, which you foresaw, so, though her intercession, we too, may be cleansed and admitted to your presence. Through Our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God for ever and ever.
All: Amen.

Celebrant: In virtue of the power entrusted to me, I accept you into the Marian Fathers’ Confraternity of the Immaculate Conception of the Most Blessed Virgin Mary. By joining this Confraternity, you accept the commitments that entitle you to share spiritually in the life, prayers, and good works of all the Marian priests and brothers, both during your lifetime and after death. In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.
All: Amen.

The celebrant sprinkles the newly admitted with holy water, upon which they kneel and recite together the following Act of Oblation:

Most Blessed Virgin Mary, / Mother of God and Immaculate Virgin, / I, (here mention your name), / a poor and sinful person, / most unworthy to see your holy face, / wish to serve you. Trusting in your great mercy, / in the presence of your belov- ed Son, / Lord Jesus—our Savior and Master, / and of all the Angels and Saints, / I offer myself today / into your bondage of love / as the most devoted child / in the Confraternity of your Immaculate Conception, / taking you as my special Mother, / Lady, / and Protectress. / I firmly resolve / never to leave you / and always to defend your honor. / I especially promise / that I shall promote / the mystery of your Immaculate Conception / until death. / Therefore, / I humbly ask you, / Most Blessed Virgin, / through the Blood / of your only Begotten Son Jesus Christ, / to mercifully receive me / among the ranks of your servants / as your eternal slave; / to help me / in all my troubles and needs; / and, above all, / to come to my assistance / at the hour of death / as the Mother of Mercy. / Amen.

INVESTITURE WITH THE BLUE SCAPULAR

The newly admitted to the Confraternity remain kneeling and the celebrant continues with the prayer of the blessing of the scapular.

Lord Jesus Christ, You chose to share our human nature. We humbly ask You to bless this scapular made in honor of the Immaculate Conception of the Most Blessed Virgin Mary. Grant that those who are clothed in it lend themselves to moral renewal among people. And may this/those, Your servant(s), invested with the scapular, through the intercession of the Virgin Mary Immaculately Conceived also deserve to be clothed in You, who live and reign for ever and ever.
All: Amen.

The celebrant sprinkles the scapular with holy water and places it over the shoulders of the recipient, saying:

Brother/Sister, receive this Blue Scapular, from now on a sign of your belonging in the Confraternity of the Immaculate Conception of the Most Blessed Virgin Mary, that by her help you may divest yourself of “the old man.” May God grant that you may wear it cleansed of every sin and free of all stain, and thus pass into eternal life.
All: Amen.

By the authority delegated to me, I extend to you a share in the spiritual benefits of plenary indulgences and other graces bestowed upon those who are vested with and worthily wear the Blue Scapular. In the name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit.
All: Amen.

CONCLUDING RITE

The celebrant, with his hands outstretched, concludes the rite with a solemn blessing. All those present bow their heads:

Celebrant: The Lord be with you.
All: And with your spirit.

C. Bow your head(s) and pray for God’s blessing.
C. May the Lord, who redeemed the world through His Son born of the Virgin Mary and who deigned to accept you into the Confraternity of her Immaculate Conception, grant you His blessing.
All: Amen.

C. May the Most Blessed Virgin Mary, who gave us the Giver of Life, protect you always.
All: Amen.

C. May the Lord grant health, true joy, and eternal happiness to all present here today to honor the Immaculate Virgin.
All: Amen.

Then he blesses all present:

C. And may Almighty God bless you all, the Father, † and the Son, and the Holy Spirit.
All: Amen.

C. May the Virgin Mary’s Immaculate Conception be your health and protection.
All: Amen.

It is recommended to end this celebration with a suitable song.


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