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Chronology Talks Slides Favours ALfie by Br Duff

Alfie Lambe

Chronology of the Servant of God Alfie Lambe 1932 - 1959

24th June 1932 - Born Tullamore, Co. Offaly, in Midland of Ireland.

1945 - Age 13, Expresses his desire to enter religious life with Christian Brothers

8th September 1948 - Entered novitiate with 49 companions, given name Ignatius.

1950 - Forced to leave Christian Brothers due to ill health - fainting attacks. In the Lord's own way, it was a fellow novice who became superior to the Christian Brothers in Buenos Aires who received Alfie's remains for his funeral Mass.

6th July 1950 - Age 18, Joined the Legion of Mary in Tullamore. Soon moved to Dublin and became a full time indoor brother in the Morning Star Hostel.

15th July 1953 - Age 21, Travelled to South America as Legion Envoy with his good friend and Legion comrade from the holiday apostolate Seamus Grace - 10 years his senior.

Alfie's travels took him to Chile, Argentine, Peru, Bolivia, Paraguay, Uruguay Brazil (as large as Europe) - became the territory of Joaquina Lucas, Colombia, Venezuela, Ecuador and Central American Republics - the territory of Seamus Grace

November 1953 - Alfie left by Joaquina to work on his own in Columbia. Great achievements followed - his personality won many - he became known as ‘el corderito'.

1953/4 - Ecuador, a country in religious disarray at the time. The request of the bishops to try the Legion soon found Alfie's work flourishing.

1954 - Alfie brought to Bishops conference of Ecuador to spread the Legion in honour of the Marian year.

25th March 1954 - First Curia of Ecuador established with 8 praesidia.

Spring 1955 - All dioceses of Ecuador now have legion.

July 1955 - Alfie was brought to the international Eucharistic Congress in Rio de Janeiro on account of his success and introduced to many Bishops there. By now he had established Curiae in Peru and Bolivia.

18th October 1955 - Curia of Sao Paulo, Brazil established.

Autumn 1955 - to Argentina - visited almost all the dioceses there, then Bolivia, Paraguay, back to Ecuador and to Argentina. Alfie got a Russian praesidium going in Buenos Aires.

January 1957 - Second Curia in Asuncion, Paraguay with 12 praesidia attached.

7th September 1957 - Bolivia via Peru to Oruru - Communist mining town. First Curia established with 10 praesidia.

9th December 1957 - Archbishop of Buenos Aires grants permission for the Legion in his Archdiocese.

June 1958 - First Curia of Urugauay established at Montevideo.

Prominent South American Bishops took the Legion Promise on the day of their Episcopal ordination.

4th August 1958 - Curia at Buenos Aires with 23 Praesidia.

December 1958 - Admitted to hospital with symptoms of a bleeding ulcer.

30th December 1958 - His Last letter to Concilium.

9th January 1959 - Alfie operated on and Lymphatic Sarcoma - a virulent cancer found.

21st January 1959 - Age 26, Feast of St. Agnes. Dies in Hospital in Argentine. Alfie received the last sacraments from Cardinal Opello of Argentina, and his last blessing was received from the future Cardinal Umberto Mozzoni, then Apostolic Nuncio to Argentina, who was instrumental in prompting the introduction for his cause for canonisation.

Alfie buried in tomb of the Irish Christian Brothers in the Recoleta cemetery in Buenos Aires.

Alfie's spirituality - “I am more than ever convinced that living the Legion is living the life of Our Blessed Lady, and the more one gives oneself to the Legion the more one finds oneself in Maryfor some time past I have made it a practice of reciting the Legion promise daily towards the end of Mass. Every line of it is full of consolation for weak people.”

Alfie was a born diplomat and won people by dint of his enthusiastic and affectionate personality and his self-sacrificing spirit.

1980 Frank Duff publishes Maria Legionis article - Vol.25, No. 2, pp.3-8.

“Do I think that Alfie is canonisable? Yes, I do. I could not see any defect in him. That by itself could be a negative state. In him it was supplemented with a faith without limit, and other heroic qualities. He gave all his energies to the pursuit of souls. He had Our Blessed Lady in a charming perfect perspective. One may institute a parallel between him and Edel. Each was wise and charming and lovable and without kinks. Each represented a frustrated vocation converted into a supreme triumph. In her case it was accomplished in eight years and in his case in six. She is being acclaimed as a model for modern youth. He would fulfil the same role and in a particular way for male youth.”

Alfie buried with the Christian Brothers, and Edel buried in the habit of the Sisters of the Precious Blood in whose convent she died.

1981 Article republished in Victory Through Mary, Praedicanda Publications, Dublin, pp.472-486.

1982 Alfie mentioned as part of an address delivered by the Holy Father, Pope John Paul II, to a group of Italian legionaries on 30th October reprinted in the Legion Handbook, p.6.

1995 Frank Duff's Article republished in Maria Legionis, Vol.38, No.2, June, pp.3-7.

February 1980 Cause for Canonisation Introduced in a letter to the Holy Father by the Archbishop of Buenos Aires, Cardinal Aramburu

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