No Money No Politics

Jim Daly
Handbook Ch. 39, Nos. 10, 11, and 12
October 15, 2015

The Legion of Mary prohibits giving material aid, collecting money and engaging in political activities. These are all commendable but they conflict with Legion work.

Handbook Section 10 prohibits material aid.

The focus of the Legion is on spiritual works. Giving material aid complicates our relationship with people. We do not want to be seen as a welfare agency. We interact with people as friends, not as distributors of money.

If we come to be known as a source of welfare, it will poison our relationship with people. They will either feel stigmatized by a relationship with us or just accept us in order to get some material aid.

The handbook gives the example of a Legionary visiting a person and finding that they are in dire need. He then returns in a private capacity and gives material help. This is prohibited. Even though he is acting in a private capacity, he is known as a Legionary. The help will be seen as coming from the Legion. If he is serious, he can give anonymously through a friend or an appropriate agency and keep the Legion out of it.

Service work is not prohibited. It is encouraged. We can mow their grass, clean their house, baby sit, or take them places like to Mass or to doctor's appointments.

Handbook Section 11 prohibits the collection of money by the Legion.

Handbook Section 12 prohibits politics.

"No legionary body shall allow its influence or its premises to be used for any political purpose or to aid any political party." Ch 39 No. 12
The Legion does not engage in any political activity, this includes abortion protests. You are encouraged to participate in pro-life activities, but you can not carry a sign that identifies you as a member of the Legion of Mary.

Although our work is spiritual, collateral material help happens. If we can help a person to be more virtuous, honest, trustworthy, and diligent, their prospects improve. If we can help a couple avoid divorce, their economic situation improves. Patients in nursing homes get better care when their caregivers know they receive visitors. When your spiritual house in order, prosperity follows. Jesus says,

"Seek ye therefore first the kingdom of God, and His justice, and all these things will be added unto you". Matthew 6:33

The prohibition of politics and money protects gullible Legionaries from being exploited by unscrupulous people who would use the good will built up by years of Legionary work for their own purposes.

No money - No politics   keeps the Legion focused on its primary goal of bringing the Good News to all people.