On May 8, 1972, while the Italian priest, Fr. Stefano Gobbi, was praying in the chapel of the apparitions in Fatima for some priests who were rebelling against the Church’s authority, he felt an interior invitation from Our Lady to gather all priests who would consecrate themselves to Her Immaculate Heart. He then received a sign of confirmation from Her in the sanctuary of the Basilica of the Annunciation in Nazareth.
Later to be known as The Marian Movement of Priests, it started slowly but surely. In September 1973 there were 80 priests joining for regular “cenacles,” as they are known, of prayer and fraternal sharing. He received the first inner locution from Our Lady for this new movement on July 7, 1973, the Feast of the Immaculate Heart and a First Saturday. It was the first of 25 years of locutions from Her, the last received on December 31, 1997. They were compiled and published regularly over the years in a book entitled To the Priests, Our Lady’s Beloved Sons, to which three cardinals and many bishops have given their Imprimatur. It contains almost 1,000 pages of messages.
The worldwide membership now numbers over 400 cardinals and bishops, over 100,000 priests, and millions of religious and laypeople who likewise have regular cenacles. In the U.S. alone, membership is over 63,000, including 4,000 bishops, priests, and deacons.
Fr. Gobbi was a personal friend of Pope St. John Paul II and he concelebrated Mass with the latter occasionally in the pope’s private chapel. When Pope Benedict XVI heard about the death of Fr. Gobbi [on June 29, 2011, at 3 p.m.] from Cardinal Ivan Dias, the Holy Father said, “He went straight to Heaven.”
These messages and the movement are so sound that they hardly require an official approval from the local bishop at this point.
Official MMP U.S. website: https://mmp-usa.net/
Official MMP international website: https://en.msm-mmp.org/