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Children of Mary

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The Sodality of Children of Mary Immaculate owes its origin to the manifestation of the Virgin Immaculate of the Miraculous Medal, on which the Church has placed a seal, by appointing the twenty-seventh of November as its feast. This manifestation was made to Sister Catherine Labouré, a novice in the mother-house of the Daughters of Charity in Paris, in 1830. Associations were formed, by way of trial, in various houses, and a rescript of 20 June, 1847, to Very Rev. John Baptist Etienne, Superior General of the Mission, empowered him to erect in each house of the Sisters of Charity a pious confraternity, dedicated to Mary Immaculate, made up of young girls attending their schools or work-rooms. This same rescript also granted to this association, not by affiliation but directly, the same indulgences as are enjoyed by the Prima Primaria of the Society of Jesus . Three years later the sovereign pontiff extended a similar favour to the youths educated by the Priests of the Lazarists, and to the little boys under the charge of the Sisters of Charity. The Brief of Pius IX , 19 September, 1876, permitted the admission into this association of young girls not attending the schools or work-rooms of the Sisters of Charity. Leo XIII confirmed these privileges by the Briefs of 21 May, 1897, 2 August, 1897, and 29 April, 1903. The badge adopted by the Children of Mary Immaculate is the miraculous medal, suspended from a blue ribbon. The statistics of 1897 gave one hundred thousand living members throughout the world, four hundred thousand having been registered from the date of the first canonical erection , in Paris, 19 July, 1847. From the same date to 1908, forty thousand were registered in the institutions of the Daughters of Charity in the United States alone.

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