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Militia Immaculata

The following is an article submitted by Pat Bjork about this special devotion at St. Mary's - Big River.  While the church has a River Falls address, it is actually located between Prescott and Ellsworth at Hwy 10 and County Road E.  The Militia Immaculata group meets most Thursday nights from 6:30 - 7:30 at the church.   A big thank you goes out to Pat Bjork for sharing this great information! 
-- May 2009

The Militia Immaculata Prayer Hour, begun in our parish in 2004, has a small but faithful following at St. Mary's - Big River.  (By the way, this church also goes by the name Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary.)  We started by making the Consecration to the Immaculate Heart of Mary according to the Louis deMontfort booklet and have been praying in church once a week ever since, so we have logged in many hours or prayer. 
Everyone is welcome!  We open the hour with several prayers from the Maximillian Kolbe booklet " Prayers From the Heart", the Consecration to the Immaculate Heart of Mary and then the rosary.  In between each decade we offer our petitions for the families, the Church, the Holy Father, bishops, priests & religious, the sick, the souls in Purgatory, the country, etc. and whatever special intentions we have each week.  During Lent we also pray the Stations of the Cross; after Easter the Divine Mercy Chaplet.  There is usually a short reading from Our Lady's messages at Medjugorje, or from St. Kolbe, quiet time and we close with a few prayers for the family before the Blessed Sacrament.  Here is a description from the MI website that explains the evangelization movement founded by St. Maximilian Kolbe:

Militia of the Immaculata

The Militia of the Immaculata (MI) is a worldwide evangelization movement founded by St. Maximilian Kolbe (left) in 1917 that encourages total consecration to the Blessed Virgin Mary as a means of spiritual renewal for individuals and society.

The MI movement is open to all Catholics over 7 years old. It employs prayer as the main weapon in the spiritual battle with evil. MIs also immerse themselves in apostolic initiatives throughout society, either individually or in groups, to deepen the knowledge of the Gospel and our Catholic Faith in them and in others.
Marian consecration is a formal act of self-giving that does not stop at Mary, but is Christ-directed. It is really consecration to Jesus. The MI's mission is "To Lead Every Individual With Mary to the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus."

By joining the MI, members become willing instruments of Our Lady, the woman foreshadowed in Genesis 3:15. She leads them to personal sanctification, the conversion of Church opponents and ultimately the universal reign of the Sacred Heart of Jesus.

The Militia of the Immaculata began on October 16, 1917, around a table at the Conventual Franciscan seminary in Rome. Maximilian Kolbe gathered six like-minded young friars before a statue of the Blessed Virgin and drafted a charter that would establish one of the most influential Marian apostolates ever. The charter still serves as a blueprint of spiritual progress for MI members today.

Since these humble beginnings, the MI has spread throughout the world and is today present on five continents and in forty-six nations. Official membership now nears four million.  For more information, click here:  Militia of the Immaculata.