Thursday, December 31, 2009

Goodbye 2009. Goodbye Legion of Christ?

Let's see what 2010 will bring.

As for this site, it garnered over 100,000 hits and more than 200,000 page views in 2009.

Please hold your applause.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Legion of Christ Announces Visitation Ending

Here is the short report on the LC website:

Rome, December 15, 2009. The Secretary of State, Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, has informed Fr Alvaro Corcuera, general director of the Legion of Christ, that the five apostolic visitators and other members of the Roman Curia met in early December. During that meeting, it was agreed that the visitators would finish their work by mid-March of 2010, in order to present their reports to the Holy Father. Any further steps and their timing depend on the Holy See.

We ask all our readers and friends to continue accompanying the visitors in their mission and all Legionaries of Christ with their prayers.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Catholic Con Men, from Fr. Longenecker

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Catholic Con Men

As the sordid revelations about Fr. Marcial Marciel--the founder of the Legionaries of Christ--keep emerging the faithful ask, "Why were so many taken in by him?"

What very few people stop to consider is the complex psychology of religious belief. Religious faith is the greatest adventure and brings forth the very best of human beings, but we have to be honest and admit that it brings forth the very worst as well.

Why do people fall for priests who turn out to be such stinkers? It's pretty complicated, but it goes like this: first of all, the bad priest himself is usually a complex character. He has deep flaws and serious sins deep down in his life. To compensate he tries very hard to be good, and what better way to be good than to become a priest? Becoming a priest helps him to cover up his flaws. He puts on a uniform everyday which proclaims that he is a holy man. The uniform allows him to play a part. He is comfortable being a good pastor, a caring person, a wonderful preacher, a man of prayer. It makes him feel better about himself and if he is not careful, he soon starts believing his own priestly image.

If he is charismatic, charming, debonair and dynamic he is even more attractive. If he is wise and wonderful and eloquent and compassionate and caring and almost Jesus himself, then he becomes even more popular and the real deep down problem is only made worse by the imposture, not better. Have you ever noticed how often it is the priests and pastors who seem the very best and most wonderful who are the ones who fall? Every asked yourself if the reason they were so wonderful is linked with their crash?

Furthermore, the whole church establishment from pope to people encourages him to merge his identity into his priesthood. He is not a man doing a job. He is to become what he was ordained to be--a self sacrificing priest. Now this is a great ideal and it is one which, when it works, makes for a wonderful transformation. However, the dark side is that all we get is a man in a priest outfit playing a part. The real monster still lurks below. If the inner problems are not resolved, the man soon starts living a double life. On the surface he is Father Fantastic. Everyone loves him. He's good at everything. Indeed he is "the best priest we've ever had..."

Furthermore, the whole dynamic of parish life contributes to build up the false image. Everyone loves Father Fantastic. Everyone looks up to him. In fact they invest an awful lot of spiritual capital in him. They put him on a pedestal. In fact, the people, rather than learning to love God (which is hard work) love the priest instead. They idolize him and he can do no wrong because they actually want an idol of a priest who can do no wrong. He epitomizes for the their whole religion. All this false religion does is to make the bad priest's conflict between his inner demons and the outer false image even worse.

Then the whole facade crumbles and Father Fantastic runs off with somebody or turns out to be an alcoholic or a pedophile or an embezzler or some other kind of skunk. Then everyone says, "How could it be! How could we have been taken in!" The sick psychology continues and Father Fantastic (who was only ever Father Flawed anyhow) is scapegoated by the community. He has gone from paragon to pariah. He's an outcast. He's guilty even when proven innocent.

Why were so many taken in by Father Maciel? Because so many people wanted to be taken in. It was easier and more exciting to believe the whole fabricated fiction than to take the effort to find out the truth and follow it.

I hope people will not misunderstand me and draw the conclusion that I am a cynic or that I don't believe holy priests are possible. They are, but the best priests I've known have been the dull ones. Give me a plodder priest any day. Give me the Samwise Gamgees of the priestly fraternity. When it comes to priests, remember all that glitters is not gold.

I'm not encouraging cynicism and doubt. I'm just saying that if you come across a priest or a monk or a bishop who is too good to be true...He probably is.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Bye, Bye, Love....

La Santa Sede será particularmente dura en el "caso Maciel"
La investigación a la Legión de Cristo concluirá en marzo
No se disolverá la orden, pero sí habrá destituciones

Jesús Bastante, 17 de diciembre de 2009 a las 09:35
Religión Digital

The Holy See Will be Particularly Hard in the "Maciel Case"
The investigation of the Legion of Christ will conclude in March
The order will not be dissolve, but there will be dismissals

Los cinco visitadores nombrados por el Papa para investigar los escándalos acaecidos en la Legión de Cristo finalizarán su misión el próximo mes de marzo, una vez entreguen sus informes definitivos ante la Santa Sede. Así lo confirma el secretario de Estado de Su Santidad, Tarcisio Bertone, en un escrito remitido al director general de la Legión, Álvaro Corcuera.
The five visitors named by the Pope to investigate the scandals which have occurred in the Legion of Christ will finalize their mission next March, once they have handed over their final reports to the Holy See. This was confirmed the Secretary of State of His Holiness, Tarcisio Bertone, in a letter sent to the director general of the Legion, Alvaro Corcuera.

A mediados de ese mes, los cinco prelados designados, Ricardo Watti, obispo de Tepic (México); Charles Chaput, arzobispo de Denver (EEUU); Ricardo EzzatAndrello, arzobispo de concepción (Chile); Giuseppe Versaldi, obispo de Alejandría (Italia) y Ricardo Blázquez, obispo de Bilbao (España), entregarán sus informes al Santo Padre, y terminarán su función.
In the middle of March, the five prelates desinated, Ricardo Watti, Bishop of Tepic (Mexico); Charles Chaput, Archbishop of Denver (USA); Ricardo EzzatAndrello [sic], Bishop of Concepcion (Chile); Guiseppe Versaldi, Bishop of Alejandria (Italy) and Ricardo Blazquez, Bishop of Bilbao (Spain), will give their reports to the Holy Father and finish their mission.

Entonces, será Benedicto XVI el que decidirá el futuro de la orden fundada por Marcial Maciel. En una estrategia de última hora, los actuales responsables de la Legión están tratando de desvincularse por completo de la figura de su fundador, conscientes de que, en la situación actual, el Papa ha declarado "tolerancia cero" con todo lo relacionado con la pederastia y los abusos a menores.
At that time, it will be Benedict XVI who will decide the future of the order founded by Marcial Maciel. In a last minute strategy, the current leaders of the Legion are trying to untie themselves completely from the figure of the founder, knowing that, in the current situation, the Pope has declared a "zero tolerance policy" with respect to pederasty and the abuse of minors.

El "caso Maciel", pues, será tratado con la "máxima dureza" por el Vaticano, según han indicado a RD fuentes romanas, que no quieren que aflore, ni por asomo, un escándalo similar a lo acaecido en la Iglesia de Irlanda.
The "Maciel Case", then, will be treated with "the utmost severity" by the Vatican, as Roman sources have indicated to Religion Digital, who wish to remain nameless, since the similar scandal in the Church in Ireland has reared its head.

El Papa está visiblemente afectado por todo lo que se ha ido conociendo acerca de la vida del fundador de la Legión de Cristo, así como de la responsabilidad no sólo de Maciel, sino de muchos de sus colaboradores, que ahora tratan de evadir su responsabilidad alegando desconocimiento y pidiendo perdón.
The Pope is visibly affected by all that he has come to know about the life of the founder of the Legion of Christ, and not only for what Maciel himself was responsible for, but also many of his colaborators, who are now trying to avoid their responsibility claiming ignorance and asking for pardon.

Todo parece indicar que no habrá disolución de la orden, pero sí una profunda remodelación en sus seminarios -que siguen siendo vivero de vocaciones-, en su estructura organizativa y en los votos que los legionarios hacen en el interior de su congregación. También se espera la destitución de muchos de sus líderes, comenzando muy probablemente por su actual director general, Álvaro Corcuera, a quienes muchos acusan de haber "instigado" el silencio en torno a Maciel durante muchos años.
All indications are that the order will not be dissolved, but there will be a profound reconditioning of its seminaries- which continue to produce vocations-, in its organizational structure and in the vows that the Legionaries take inside of their congregation. Also, the dismissal of its leaders is expected, probably starting with the current director general, Alavro Corcuera, who many accuse of having "instigated" the silence surrounding Maciel for many years.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Open Letter to the Legionaries of Christ

¡Venga tu Reino!




Vencer el mal con el bien y la mentira con la verdad es el fin de estas páginas que sólo pre-tenden hacer luz sobre las preguntas que muchos legionarios de Cristo y miembros del Regnum Christi tienen en la cabeza y en el corazón. Aquí encontrarán las respuestas que sus superiores y directores no les quieren dar.

Los que escribimos estas líneas no somos ni masones ni jesuitas ni marxistas ni judíos, ni miembros del Opus Dei, ni todas esas fuerzas que el P. Marcial Maciel presentaba como enemigos suyos y de la Legión de Cristo. Somos hermanos tuyos que queremos apoyarte y que creemos que es necesario vivir en el bien y en la verdad.

No te queremos engañar: todos los datos que aparecen aquí son absolutamente ciertos y verificados aunque no siempre podemos escribir las fuentes por razones obvias.

Los superiores, ya sea por su bondad y pusilanimidad, como el P. Álvaro Corcuera y otros, o porque están implicados y por ello encubren los problemas, no son capaces de asumir estas realidad y explicarlas. A ellos les interesa más la institución que tú, pero a nosotros nos interesas más tú y tu felicidad en esta vocación a la que Dios nos ha llamado.

Preguntas y respuestas.

1. El fundador.

- ¿El P. Marcial Maciel fue un santo?
El primer paso para juzgar la santidad de una persona, incluso antes de reconocer su vivencia heroica de las virtudes, es la probidad de vida, es decir, si no tuvo vicios o comportamientos alejados del Evangelio o de la ética natural. En el caso del P. Marcial Maciel es evidente que esto no se da.

- ¿El P. Marcial Maciel vivió siempre de acuerdo a su condición de sacerdote y de religioso?
No. Desde sus tiempos de estudiante en el seminario de Moctezuma tuvo relaciones homosexuales. Por ello fue expulsado del seminario en dos ocasiones. Después practicó la pedofilia con seminaristas, algunos de los cuales siguen todavía en la congregación de los legionarios de Cristo; engañó a la Santa Sede en la visita apostólica de los años 1956 a 1958, cuando murió Pío XII; tuvo varios hijos con distintas mujeres; vivió en el lujo y en el dispendio e hizo de la mentira y de la calumnia su arma de gobierno. Así, por ejemplo, cuando algún sacerdote no accedía a lo que él le pedía, el P. Marcial Maciel comenzaba a extender “rumores” sobre él. Muchos sacerdotes y miembros del Regnum Christi han sido víctimas de este sistema.

- ¿El P. Marcial Maciel era un hombre de oración?
No. No rezaba el Breviario, que es obli-gatorio para todos los sacerdotes, ni hacía ninguno de los actos de piedad previstos en el manual de oraciones de la congregación.

- ¿Cómo sabemos que todo esto es verdad, pues sólo creemos el mal que se ve y el bien que se oye?
Todos quisiéramos que no fuera verdad, pero los testimonios son abrumadores. A pesar de todos los esfuerzos por hacer desaparecer la documentación, contamos con ele-mentos irrefutables, incluso con una investigación detallada por parte de los servicios secre-tos de algunos países que hicieron llegar al Papa y con los datos detallados de investigado-res privados contratados para descubrir la verdad. Se han realizado pruebas de paternidad sobre los hijos del fundador que han dado positivo, se encontraron cuatro pasaportes en su poder que han permitido reconstruir sus viajes y sus estancias en hoteles, locales nocturnos y centros de lenocinio de menores en Tailandia y otros países y, en fin, existen centenares de testimonios confrontados sobre toda esta información, que seguramente, con el tiempo, se irá incrementando, pues todavía existen varias investigaciones en curso rastreando cuen-tas bancarias y usos de tarjetas de crédito.

- ¿El P. Marcial Maciel escribió todas las cartas y los libros de espiritualidad que tienen los legionarios y miembros del Regnum Christi?
No. El P. Marcial Maciel escribió sólo una pequeña cantidad de ellos y, algunos de ellos, son simples plagios, como el “Salterio de mis días”, copiado de la obra “Salterio de mis horas”, de Luis Lucía Lucía, editado en 1956 en Valencia, por más que nos quieran explicar con alambicados argumentos que simplemente lo usó como fuente de inspiración.

- ¿Cuántos hijos biológicos tuvo el P. Marcial Maciel?
En realidad, no se sabe. Hay, de momento, tres reconocidos, pero se sospecha que puede haber otros tres o cuatro más.

- ¿El P. Marcial Maciel era adicto a las drogas?
Sí, el P. Marcial Maciel consumía morfina en diversos compuestos de modo habitual. Algunas personas que fueron administradores generales o que estuvieron encargados de sus cuidados dentro de la congregación conservan todavía las facturas de los fármacos que se le compraban.

- ¿Se puede decir que el P. Marcial Maciel estaba enfermo psicológicamente y por eso tenía estos comportamientos inmorales?
Aunque algunos afirman que padecía una disociación de personalidad, en realidad no hay ningún diagnóstico terminante. De todos modos, aunque esto pudiera restarle culpabilidad moral, no puede constituirse en una excusa para seguir manteniendo su figura como la de un santo ya que, según el juicio de los médicos que han estudiado el caso, sus perversiones eran plenamente conscientes, consentidas y con pleno conocimiento.

2. La vida religiosa en la Legión y en el Movimiento Regnum Christi.

- ¿Los votos privados de los legionarios de Cristo respondían verdaderamente a virtudes cristianas?
Los dos votos obligaban a delatar a las personas que los infringieran, y eso no se puede considerar una virtud cristiana. La Santa Sede quitó los votos privados a través de una carta dirigida por la Congregación para la Doctrina de la Fe a todos los legionarios y consagrados del Movimiento Regnum Christi que nunca se nos entregó.

- ¿De dónde vienen las normas de alejamiento de la familia?
Cuando el P. Marcial Maciel comenzó a cometer abusos sexuales con sus seminaristas –las primeras denuncias datan de 1944- entendió que debía alejarlos de sus familias para que no lo delatasen. Por ello, a los que eran mexicanos los llevaba a Europa y viceversa, y de igual modo controlaba toda su correspondencia para evitar que lo descubrieran. También, por este motivo, implantó las normas de la incomunicación entre comunidades.

- ¿En la Legión de Cristo y en el Movimiento Regnum Christi se respeta el foro interno de la conciencia moral, tal y como siempre ha pedido la Iglesia?
Nunca se ha respetado ni se respeta. Los superiores son al mismo tiempo directores espirituales (aunque la dirección espiritual puede recibir otros nombres como “diálogo de formación”) y confesores. Además, entre los superiores se comunican datos del foro interno, especialmente en las reuniones para elección de los destinos, y se han tomado decisiones sobre elementos escu-chados en las confesiones. También, los legionarios que confiesan a las consagradas reci-ben indicaciones sobre el estado de cada una.

- ¿Es verdad que el Papa Juan Pablo II aprobó los Estatutos del Regnum Christi y las Constituciones de la Legión de Cristo?
Sí, pero es una verdad parcial. Las copias que él aprobó no son las que tienen los legionarios y los miembros consagrados del Movimiento Regnum Christi. Por ejemplo, los estatutos del Movimiento Regnum Christi que aprobó el Papa sólo tenían 128 números, mientras que los que tienen las consagradas cuentan con 1057 y la de los legionarios más de 500. Del mismo modo, la edición de las Constituciones que aprobó el Papa Juan Pablo II no es la que tenemos los legionarios de Cristo en nuestros anaqueles. Sobre la aprobación de los estatutos hay muchas dudas de que el Papa haya firmado esa aprobación, pues fueron aprobados en los momentos en que el Santo Padre estaba peor de salud. De hecho, en 2007, en un encuentro de Juventud y Familia en Atlanta, el Cardenal Franck Rodé, prefecto de la congragación para institutos de vida consagrada y sociedades de vida apostólica, ante un stand sobre la vida consagrada en el Movimiento Regnum Christi, dijo que no sabía que eso existía. Y, supuestamente, él aprobó los estatutos.

- ¿Hasta qué punto puede considerarse al P Marcial Maciel fundador de la Legión de Cristo y del Movimiento Regnum Christi?
En cuanto organizador material sí, pero como inspira-dor espiritual caben serias dudas. Consta que la espiritualidad en su conjunto ha sido generalmente plagiada de distintas fuentes o sintetizada por otras personas a partir de los textos sagrados y autores eclesiásticos. Sus palabras en público eran habitualmente pronunciadas bajo el efecto de drogas. Y buena parte de las normas disciplinares, que también han sido sintetizadas por otros, aparecen claramente como medios para mantener la impunidad ante abusos del fundador y de otros superiores.

- ¿Cómo es posible que se vean tantos frutos sanos de un árbol que no lo es?
Aunque es admirable en muchos aspectos la labor apostólica de la Legión y el Movimiento, los frutos apostólicos no deben atribuirse únicamente al P. Marcial Maciel, pues la mayoría del trabajo proviene de otras personas que actuaron de buena fe, frecuentemente engañadas. Estos frutos tampoco deben considerarse enteramente sanos, pues en la medida en que tenían co-mo fin crear una buena imagen y engañar a las personas, no son tales.

- ¿Podemos considerar verdadera la historia de la Legión de Cristo y del Movimiento Regnum Christi tal y como la conocemos hasta ahora?
Fundamentalmente no. Hay datos acce-sorios que son reales, pero la verdad ha sido deformada por el P. Marcial Maciel. Se pueden citar algunos ejemplos, como el hecho de que los padres Ferreira y Esparza aparecían siem-pre como personajes negativos, cuando realmente ellos sólo quisieron defender a los semi-naristas menores de los abusos sexuales del fundador. Por eso, el P. Esparza trataba de mantener siempre juntos en la misma habitación a los apostólicos cuando estaba en el se-minario el P. Marciel Maciel. Del mismo modo, fue el P. Ferreira quien redactó las prime-ras constituciones y también fue quien presentó a la autoridad eclesiástica las primeras de-nuncias por abusos sexuales del fundador. Los atentados contra su vida no fueron obra de personas malas, sino de padres de familia de apostólicos que fueron abusados y quisieron vengarse o asustarle. Del mismo modo, el P. Esparza se enfrentó con él porque varios her-manos apostólicos le habían comentado de las aberraciones a las que los sometía el P. Mar-cial Maciel. Otro ejemplo es el caso de la que siempre hemos llamado “gran bendición” y que realmente fue un gran engaño. En ese período, el fundador forzó a mentir con presiones a varios hermanos nuestros que habían sido abusados sexualmente. También engañó a va-rios cardenales. De todos modos, la muerte del Papa Pío XII interrumpió la investigación.

3. La situación actual.

- ¿Es lícito y conveniente callar los pecados del P Maciel por caridad?
Dependerá de las circunstancias. Hay personas que tienen el derecho de conocer lo que hizo, en particular su naturaleza criminal, especialmente los que tienen que tomar decisiones que afectan a su estado de vida, como consagrarse, emitir votos, recibir la ordenación. Sus superiores, si no se lo manifiestan de manera clara y les convencen de que no es necesario saberlo, incum-plen un deber de justicia, pues les impiden tomar una decisión verdaderamente libre y ma-dura, pues desconocerían un aspecto importante del lugar concreto donde consagran su vida y se expondrían a nuevos engaños y abusos. Si para donar órganos se requiere un consenti-miento libre e informado del donante, tanto más para donar la propia vida. El Papa nos en-seña en su última encíclica que la caridad no puede subsistir privada de la verdad (cfr. Cari-tas in Veritate 3).

- ¿Los legionarios de Cristo no sabían nada de lo que hacía el P. Marcial Maciel?
Muchos de ellos no. Los legionarios no tienen libre acceso a Internet, ni pueden enviar o recibir mensajes con libertad, y todas sus comunicaciones deben pasar por los superiores. Este blindaje hace que no puedan recibir noticias de fuera. Además, internamente, los superiores tienen un régimen de vida secreto que los súbditos no conocen. Por otro lado, el voto de no criticar a los superiores impedía toda sospecha. No hay ninguna trasparencia. Además, el fundador estaba protegido por el voto de fidelidad de algunos colaboradores que, si sabían, se comprometían a guardar secreto.

- ¿El Papa Juan Pablo II sabía todo lo que hacía el P. Marcial Maciel?
Tenía la información, pero siempre consideró que eran mentiras. Aunque hoy se dice que conocía a una hija del P. Marcial Maciel y que la conocía como tal, esto no es cierto.

- ¿Cómo es posible que los superiores oculten la verdad, cuando se ve claramente que son personas entregadas y llenas de buena fe y deseo de ayudar?
Probablemente se trata de una deformación de conciencia. Consta que el P. Marcial Maciel tenía gran capacidad de mani-pular la conciencia de sus directos colaboradores, a los que hacía realizar actos inmorales creyendo que hacían la voluntad de Dios. Algunas de estas deformaciones perviven hoy y se han transmitido en distinta medida a muchos legionarios y miembros del Regnum Christi.

- ¿Cómo es posible que hoy muchos legionarios y miembros del Regnum Christi sigan desinformados sobre la verdad del P. Marcial Maciel? Porque los superiores generalmente no han creído conveniente manifestar esta verdad, aduciendo múltiples excusas, sobre todo la de preservar la caridad y no dañar la vocación y la entrega a Dios de las personas. En reali-dad, al tratarse de un derecho y un deber el conocer dicha verdad, se falta a la caridad y se daña la verdadera vocación cuando se mantiene a las personas en el error. La experiencia que hemos vivido es que este empeño en defender al fundador y a la institución a toda costa ha costado la pérdida de muchas vocaciones, y estas vocaciones era lo que realmente deber-ía haberse procurado salvar.

- ¿Por qué muchos legionarios ya no llaman “nuestro padre” al P. Marcial Maciel? Si a un padre biológico no se le puede dejar de llamar “padre” a pesar de las desviaciones morales que pueda tener, pues la relación que existe con él se produce como efecto de un hecho sobre el cual no se puede rectificar: la paternidad biológica, y del mismo modo a un sacer-dote se le llama “padre” por la unción sacerdotal, que también es irreversible, sin embargo, a un padre espiritual se le puede dejar de llamar “padre” cuando su vida moral o espiritual no responde al ideal cristiano que debería representar.

- ¿Debemos tener en la Legión y el Regnum Christi como punto de referencia al P. Marcial Maciel?
Ciertamente no en el sentido en el que cualquier orden o congregación religiosa tiene a su fundador como punto de referencia (cfr. Concilio Vaticano II, LG 45-46 y PC 2b), pues no se puede considerar que fue un "hombre de Dios", sino más bien un genio del engaño. Del mismo modo, sería contraproducente ponerlo como ejemplo para los alumnos de nuestros colegios pues la verdad sobre su vida es la historia de un hombre cargado de perversiones.

- ¿Cuáles son las principales deformaciones presentes hoy en la Legión y el Movimiento?
Son varias; algunas de las principales son:

1. Se desconfía a priori de todo lo externo a la congregación y juzgar todo desde la institu-ción, sin juzgarla a ella. Las normas y tradiciones de la Legión y el Regnum Christi se con-vierten en norma absoluta. Por ejemplo, son buenos los obispos que nos apoyan, son malos los que no lo hacen.

2. Se antepone la institución a las personas en el momento de tomar decisiones sobre ellas. Así, por ejemplo, se pide a alguien que acuda a un nuevo destino sabiendo que a donde llegue se le cambiará a su vez a otro que, aunque ya se tiene pensado, no se le comunica a él sino hasta un segundo momento, o se habla de un viaje para unos días y, llegando, se le da un nuevo destino.

3. Se justifican medios ilícitos -como el engaño- con una finalidad conveniente, como el bien de la institución, su unidad y su crecimiento.

4. En la práctica, se considera que el engaño no es pecado y se practica con mentiras, me-dias verdades o silencios. Basta ver las estadísticas anuales.

5. Se cree que se obedece a la Santa Sede cuando se cumple sólo con la letra de las indica-ciones que da, pero sin respetar el espíritu, aunque muchas veces sólo conocemos lo que dice la Santa Sede de un modo indirecto, a través, de los superiores, por ejemplo, cuando la Congregación para la Doctrina de la Fe emitió el documento sobre la anulación del voto privado dirigido a todos los legionarios y miembros consagrados del Movimiento Regnum Christi que nunca se nos entregó.

6. Se mantiene un doble lenguaje divergente: el de las palabras y el de los hechos. En las palabras todo es bondad y amor, mientras que de hecho se aísla y se manipula a las perso-nas, sobre todo si no están de acuerdo con los superiores.

7. Se somete absolutamente la conciencia, núcleo más secreto y sagrario del hombre, en el que éste se siente a solas con Dios (Concilio Vaticano II, GS 16), al criterio y voluntad de los superiores y a normas escrupulosamente concretas para controlarla. La abnegación de juicio y de voluntad ha creado personas sin capacidad de discernimiento propio, sometidas a un sistema.

8 Se sigue defendiendo que el superior está por encima de las normas, que el legislador -P. Marcial Maciel- estaba por encima de la ley.

9. No se reconoce humildemente el pecado en la vida de las personas y de la institución.

10. Se dice que se trabaja para la Iglesia, pero sólo nos acercamos a ella cuando nos con-viene y para sacar nuestros objetivos.

11. Se ha creado un ambiente de desconfianza mutua basado en la posible delación de los errores ciertos o inventados, muy distinto al espíritu de familia del que siempre se habla.

- ¿Hay transparencia en la administración de la Legión de Cristo y del Movimiento Regnum Christi?
Todos decimos que la hay, pero muy pocos han visto alguna vez un balance de cuentas. En la mayoría de las congregaciones religiosas, todos los sacerdotes y religiosos de votos perpetuos tienen acceso a estos datos. Incluso, algunas las hacen abiertamente públi-cas, como la Congregación de los Steyler Missionare o Congregación del Verbo Divino (SOCIETAS VERBI DIVINI), que incluso los publica en Internet.

- ¿Por qué los laicos que trabajan en nuestras obras no dicen nada sobre las irregularidades que perciben?
Porque muchos de ellos dependen económicamente de las obras y no quieren poner en peligro su trabajo. Por ello, aunque en conversaciones privadas señalan errores, deformaciones y abusos graves, sobre todo desde el punto de vista administrativo y de abuso de poder, no han sido capaces de acudir a los visitadores o de expresar de algún otro modo sus quejas. Saben que eso les costaría su puesto de trabajo, como ya ha ocurrido en algunos casos. Esto también sucede con muchos legionarios de Cristo y miembros consagrados del Movimiento Regnum Christi, que saben que sus testimonios no pueden aportar grandes datos, pero sí poner en peligro su situación personal. Piensa, por ejemplo, qué haría un miembro consagrado que tuviera entre 50 y 60 años de edad que tuviera que dejar la vida consagrada por enfrentarse al sistema en el que vivimos. O, más fácil, piensa qué har-ías tú y por qué tú no quieres hacer nada después de haber leído esto.

Roma, 12 de diciembre de 2009

Solemnidad de Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe

Caritas in Veritate

P.R.C. A.G.D.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Bloody Hell! We knew that. And they called us liars.

Legión de Cristo da a conocer a sus miembros plagio de P. Maciel en libro espiritual
Legion of Christ announces to members the plagiarism of Maciel in spiritual book

REDACCIÓN CENTRAL, 11 Dic. 09 / 07:56 pm (ACI)En un esfuerzo por distanciarse de las inconductas de su fundador, la Legión de Cristo circuló recientemente un memorándum interno en el que explica que un libro espiritual atribuido al P. Marcial Maciel, es en realidad un texto originalmente producido por un poco conocido autor español.

December 11, 2009: In an effort to distance themselves from the improper conduct of their founder, the Legion of Christ circulated recently an internal memo in which they explain that the spiritual book attributed to Fr. Marcial Maciel, is in reality a text originally produced by a little known Spanish author.

"El Salterio de mis días", según la tradición de los legionarios, se consideraba como un escrito del periodo de "gran bendición" (1956-1959), cuando el P. Maciel fue sometido a un proceso canónico en el Vaticano del que finalmente fue exonerado.

The Psalter of My Days, according to Legionary tradition, was considered a writing of the Great Blessing (1956-1959), when Fr. Maciel was submitted to a cannonical process in the Vatican and was in the end exonerated.

El memorándum interno revela que el texto, muy popular entre la Legión en su original en español y parcialmente traducido al inglés para el uso interno, está "basado" en el pequeño trabajo de un político católico español, Luis Lucía.

The internal memo reveals that the text, very popular within the Legion in its original Spanish and partially translated into English for internal use, is "based" on the short wor of a Spanish Catholic politician, Luis Lucia.

En el libro titulado "El Salterio de mis horas", Lucía escribió sus experiencias durante la persecución del gobierno comunista durante la Guerra Civil Española (1936-1939) y durante el gobierno nacionalista de Francisco Franco, quien lo condenó a muerte pero luego cambió su pena a cadena perpetua.

In the book entitled "The Psalter of My Hours", Lucia wrote of his experiences during the communist government persecution during the Spanish Civil War (1936-1939) and during the nationalist government of Francisco Franco, who condemned him to death, but later changed that judgement into life in prison.

Se cree que Lucía, escritor de distintos libros políticos y espirituales, habría escrito "El Salterio de mis horas" en los años ‘30s. Fue liberado de la prisión en la que estaba encarcelado en 1941 y murió en Valencia en 1943.

It is thought that Lucia, writer of varios political and spiritual books, wrote "The Psalter of My Hours" in the 1930s. He was liberated from prison in 1941 and died in Valencia in 1943.

Tras haber estado en el olvido, "El Salterio de mis horas" fue publicado en Valencia en 1956. Esta sería la edición que el P. Marcial Maciel habría leído en España.

After having been forgotten, the book, "The Psalter of My Hours" was published in Valencia in 1956. This would be the edition that Fr. Marcial Maciel would have read in Spain.

Pese a que el memorándum interno de la Legión de Cristo no describe la copia del P. Maciel como "plagio", un miembro español de los legionarios declaró a Catholic News Agency que la versión del fundador reproduce "el 80 por ciento del libro original en contenido y estilo".

Even though the internal memo of the Legion of Christ does not describe the copying by Fr. Maciel as plagiarism, a Spanish member of the Legionaries told Catholic New Agency that the version that the founder reproduces "80% of the original book in content and style".

Monday, December 7, 2009

Vive la France! et le Québec!

Nous fêtons aujourd’hui l’anniversaire de la première semaine de son existence. Et le résultat a été très positif. Grosso modo :

  • Nous avons eu une moyenne de 95 visites par jour, provenant essentiellement des Etats-Unis, de la France et du Canada. Les visites du site ont été boostées par un article paru sur
  • Peu de commentaires publics, mais de nombreux témoignages privés, français et canadiens, qui vont généralement dans le même sens : des remerciements, des encouragements… Quelques anciens légionnaires, dont certains sont encore prêtres ou séminaristes, ont également confirmé la véracité des articles.
  • Les forums de discussion ne donnent pas grand-chose, pour le moment, sans doute à cause d’une certaine pudeur… ou peut-être, qui sait, de respect humain ? Dans tous les cas, sachez bien qu’en mettant un commentaire, personne, (et moi non plus) n’a accès à votre adresse mail. Alors, n’hésitez pas écrire, quitte à prendre un pseudo !
NB: Landon Cody n'est pas la meme que Phil Conners. c'est different que le
Landon Cody ain't Phil Conners. Sorry, you conspiracy oriented folk. We be two different guys and two different blogs.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Christmas Cheer, Legion Style. Lots of Expensive Ham.

From a comment on Life-after-rc

I challenge the Legion of Christ to deliver all of their Christmas baskets and the spiritual bouquets to the bishops [and cardinals] anonymously. The bishops [and cardinals] would still experience all of the consolation and affection that the gift baskets and bouquets exude, plus they would be pleasantly intrigued by the fact that it was done as an act of humility instead of a self-serving PR schmooze.

I imagine that if they had to do it anonymously, they would not deliver anything. Nothing. Every supposed good deed of theirs has to be recognized, preferably in the form of a thank-you note which can then be scanned and used for further self-promotion.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Can a Leopard Change its Spots? It is a Question of Confidence and Credibility

This is a key question that needs some discussion.

Let's face it, the entire Legion debacle is about credibility and confidence: the credibility of the Legion of Christ, and confidence in it, and the credibility of the Catholic Church and confidence in it.

The Legion has no credibility. No need to go into it; it's just a fact that is more evident now then ever. So can we place our confidence in the Legion to change? Can we trust the Legion if the investigation ends with some rule changes, changes of superiors and a stern lecture on how the charism does not depend on the founder, and "you guys have to face the facts about him?" Is this enough? Can we trust the people who have been trained to lie and deceive "for the Kingdom"? Can we trust the people trained to pick and choose the souls they will work to save? Can we trust the structure which covered up for Maciel; his structure; his monster child who looks good by day but is a demon in its actions?

Now that the Church needs more of a credibility boost than ever, are these bishops going to slap the Legion on the wrist, call for impossible reforms, and cover it all up with some theological language which will remain just a bunch of pious words which say all the right things but mean nothing? We have come to expect this from the Catholic Church. They have never learned and it looks like they are not about to start, or will they?

This is the time. This is the one situation which is in their hands. Will they strive to protect the "good of the Church" the "good priests" and let down a whole population? To hell with us who have suffered, as long as they protect their priests. Here is the Church and here is the steeple. Open the doors and see all the priests. (?!)

Landon Cody.

What do you want to say to Archbishop Chaput?

What would you like to tell Archbishop Chaput? If he is checking this blog while he is in Rome in talks concerning the visitation of the Legion of Christ, here is your chance to leave a comment and let him know anything that's on your mind at the last minute...

Wednesday, December 2, 2009



Dec. 2-6: Interim discussions on the Legion of Christ visitation, Rome

Wednesday, November 11, 2009


From Life-After-RC Comment:

I received as a gift a rosary from a 3gF that was blessed by JP2. This rosary was brought to Cotija and rubbed in the dirt of MM gravesite. The rosary was given to her by another 3gF who attended the funeral. I thought it was odd that she would give it away. She replied that she already had a rosary blessed by JP2. She left RC about 6 months later.

I've thought often, what do I do with this rosary? It is blessed by JP2 and smeared by MM. One day, I tried to scrub the dirt out of it, but it would not come clean. For months, I couldn't even look at it. How could a rosary disgust me so intensely. One day, I picked it up and prayed to Mary. I asked her to pray to JP2 for his intercession in dissolving the Order that smeared his papacy.

Today, whenever I use that rosary, I pray for the dissoultion of the Legionaries of Christ.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Welcome to Mee-a-mee! NOT!

From the Archdiocese Website:

The Legionaries of Christ are prohibited from functioning in the Archdiocese of Miami. Furthermore, Regnum Christi - a group of lay Catholics related to the Legionaries of Christ - are not and have never been approved by Archbishop Favalora to work in any parish, school or other Archdiocesan entity.

A los Legionarios de Cristo se les ha prohibido funcionar en la Arquidiócesis de Miami. Además, el grupo laico Regnum Christi - el cual esta asociado con los Legionarios de Cristo - no tiene y nunca ha tenido permiso para funcionar en ninguna parroquia, escuela o entidad de esta arquidiócesis.

More on American Papist.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

A Growing Trend: In but really out.

Dear Gateway families,

I've been in the Legion for 23 years. It's been a very fulfilling time in my life, particularly the time spent at Gateway Academy.
Through pray and discernment, I've asked for the opportunity to work in a parish and have been assigned in the Diocese of New Jersey. I remain a member of the congregation of the Legion of Christ, and am grateful for the years I have worked in the many apostolates of the Legion.
I am thankful to all of you for allowing me to be a part of your life. I ask that you keep me in your prayers and know that you will always be in mine.
God bless,
Fr. Thomas Maher, LC

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Take That, National Chaotic Register!

From a comment on Life-After-RC posted by Steve, in response to the National Catholic Register's proposed makeover announced by the editor and chief, Fr. Owen Kearns, L.C.

Got a solicitation email from Fr. [Owen] Kearns on this last night. My response is below.

Fr. Kearns:

Given the recent ongoing revelations about Fr. MM; about the non-canonical and very tenuous way young girls are drained of their best years and energies and then dismissed without cause from the Consecrated; the stories of malfeasance on the part of Fr. MM and his LC inner circle in supporting multiple previously undisclosed children/consorts; and the remarkable way that some of the Church’s “Best and Brightest” (LCs, of course) not only failed to detect what a monster their founder was, but seem incapable of figuring out that he had confederates who are still in their ranks,

PLEASE TELL ME on what grounds you think the NCR has any room to cast stones at an admittedly chaotic culture overwhelmed by secular aggression and government overreach.

Wouldn’t it be good to work on getting your own house in order first?

I’m not sure if anyone has said this to you lately, but just in terms of common decency, you guys (the LCs) are really stinking up the place.

Fr. Alvarro lets LCs know that he is privately meeting with all of Fr. MM’s victims. Word from folks who know many of the victims is that he hasn’t met with any of the folks that they know.

The Consecrated are still being dismissed w/out explanation, education, Social Security, retirement or any other protections afforded to religious or even to poorly run companies (I have a friend who has a daughter still in the Consecrated—she’s told her dad that girls still disappear w/out explanation…)

And in the midst of a Visitation that might end in dissolution of the order, we’re still supposed to be recruiting at full throttle?

Is this all crazy or what?

In Christ,
(my name, education credentials and status in RegC)

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Photo Caption Contest for the Whole Damn Month!

Photo from Desmontando
With apologizes to Life-After-RC for the theft of the idea.

There's need to fear! Underdog is not here!

From Desmontando a Maciel
¿Dónde está el P. Álvaro?
Where is Fr. Alvaro?

Los legionarios sufren el silencio de su Director General

Legionaries suffer in the silence of their General Director.
Muchos legionarios están preocupados. Pero no, lo que les preocupa más no es ni la pederastia ni la paternidad biológica de su padre espiritual, que de este asunto apenas reciben noticias; tampoco es su primera preocupación lo que va a ser de la Congregación tras la Visita Canónica. Lo que preocupa más a los sacerdotes legionarios, lógicamente, es su propia persona, el lugar donde les destinen, y la encomienda que la Legión pueda dar a cada uno. Los legionarios se interrogan por su futuro inmediato pero su Director General no responde.

Many Legionaries are worried. But no, what worries them most is not the pedastry or biological paternity of their spiritual fater, which they have just only gotten news of recently; no is their primary worry what is to become of the Congregation after the Canonical Visit. What most worries legionary priests, logically, is their very selves, the place where they will be sent, and what the Legion will give each of them as a task. The legionaries are asking about their immediate future, but the General Director is not talking.

Así, a ojo, podríamos calcular que una tercera parte de los sacerdotes legionarios se encuentra en una “situación irregular”, es decir, viviendo un status especial dentro de la Congregación. Hay decenas de sacerdotes legionarios viviendo con sus propias familias, en un periodo de reflexión o descanso, o también replanteando su vocación en diferentes diócesis. Hay otros muchos separados de las comunidades, viviendo por su cuenta, solos o en parejas, a su manera, a la espera de superar traumas, asentarse, o con las escusa de descansar de alguna labor que les ha desgastado. No son pocos los legionarios que han necesitado ayuda psiquiátrica, algunos incluso necesitando ser ingresados. Un grupo amplio de sacerdotes permanece en Roma, estudiando una Teología que nunca acaba. Y luego están los proscritos, todos los desterrados a las misiones de Quintana Roo y que no han querido o no se han atrevido a abandonar la Congregación. Porque la península de Yucatán siempre fue una lenta y silenciosa puerta de atrás para los díscolos. Dicen que desde que fue Mons. Elizondo, el destierro no es a las misiones, sino a Brasil; que te mandan a Brasil y, cómo solíamos bromear los teólogos: “borran tu nombre del ordenador”.
Esta situación insoportable no se debe tanto a los pecados del fundador, como al legado de carencias y manías irracionales que la obra ha heredado. La Legión machaca psicológicamente a sus propios hijos, hasta hundirlos.

With a quick view estimate, we can say that one third of Legionary priests are in a "irregular situation", that is, living some sort of special status within the Congregation. There are dozens of Legionary priests living with their own families, in a period of reflexion or rest, or reconsidering their vocation in different dioceses. There are many others separated from their communities, living on their own, or in pairs, in their own way, waiting to overcome trauma, getting away, or with the excuse to rest from some labor with which they were charged which has worn them out. There are not just a few legionaries who need psychiatric help, and some have had to be committed. A large group of priests are in Rome, studying theology courses that never seem to end. And then there are the ostracized, those exiled to the missions of Quintana Roo, who have not wished or don't dare to leave the Congregation. Because the Yucatan Pennisula was always a back door for the less fortunate. They say that since Bishop Elizondo was sent there, the real exile is no longer the missions, but rather Brazil: as we used to joke, "when you get sent to Brazil, your name is erased from the computer." This absurd situation is not due so much to the sins of founder, but rather to the legacy of shortcomings and obsessions inherited by the order. The Legion phycologically mutilates its own children, to the point of wounding them.

Y en este escenario el Superior General está ausente. Sí, recorre los frentes para declarar su inocencia, pero no responde a los sacerdotes que necesitan una decisión, una respuesta, un nuevo rumbo. Está dejando que situaciones incómodas se alarguen sine die porque no decide. Y en la Legión nadie se mueve si el Director General no habla. Decenas de sacerdotes necesitan al P. Álvaro, quieren saber qué va a ser de ellos y qué les pide la Legión. El Director General, desde que empezó este annus horribilis, debería haberse entrevistado uno por uno con todos los sacerdotes legionarios. Así tendría más claro cuál es el pulso de su Congregación. Pero está muy ocupado escondiendo la basura bajo la alfombra.

In all of this reality, the Superior General is absent. Yes, he is going from house to house to declare his innocence, but he has not answered his priests when they need a decision, a reply, a new path. He is allowing these uncomfortable situations to grow indefinitely because he will not decide. And in the Legion, no one will mover if the General Director does not speak. Scores of priests need Fr. Alvaro, they want to know what will be of them, and what the Legion will ask of them. The General Director, since this annus horribilis began, should have interviewed each and every one of the Legionary priests. This would give him a clearer view of the pulse of his Congregation. But he is very busy sweeping trash under the carpet.

Por otro lado, la Congregación se jacta de tener ochocientos sacerdotes. Pero no dicen nunca que han ordenado a más de mil doscientos. Sí, más de un tercio lo ha dejado. Y la mayoría ha abandonado también el ministerio. Además, nueve de cada diez seminaristas lo dejan antes de la ordenación. Los constantes cambios de centros que sufren los religiosos esconden las deserciones.

On the other hand, the Congregation brags of having 800 priests. But they say nothing of the fact that they have ordained more than 1,200. Yes, more than a third have left. And the majority have left the ministry, too. Also, 9 out of 10 seminarians will leave before ordination. The continual changes of religious from place to place helps hide the desertions.

De todo esto se concluye que la Legión no es un “árbol tan sano” como dijo el Vaticano en su comunicado del 2006 y que la visita apostólica no puede centrarse solamente en el problema del fundador. Lo que quieren los legionarios de base es que el Vaticano les ayude a ejercer su ministerio sin trabas, con autenticidad y posibilidades pastorales. Quieren salir de la burbuja de mentiras, paternalismo y actitudes maximalistas que les mantiene ausentes de la realidad para poder ejercer su sacerdocio con verdadera eficiencia eclesial.

From all of this, we can conclude that the Legion is not a healthy tree as the Vatican said in the 2006 communiqué and the apostolic visit cannot only focus on the problem of the founder. Legionaries want the Vatican to help them to exercise their ministry without hindrance, with authenticity, and pastoral possibilities. They want to leave the bubble of lies, paternalism, and maximalist attitudes which keep them away from reality to be able to exercise their priesthood with true ecclesial efficacy.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Installment Three

Screenplay Act 1 Scene 3


Elena and ISABEL, another Mexican, are talking about the retreat
and snacking on a variety of food left on the table. We thought they
were dignified, women of God, and suddenly, they have let down
their guard.

So what did Lia want?

I think the Holy Spirit is working. We
may have another recruit for the summer

I figured as much, the way she was crying
during your meditation. She’s seemed like
a good recruit for a while. Well, I guess
you have a new “face.”

I was thinking maybe I would write her some
letters so she doesn’t get distracted by
school and boys or stuff.

You must be joking, boys? Lia’s surely
never been kissed. Homeschooled girls
rarely have boyfriends, and Lia least
of all.

She is very sheltered. But that makes it
easier for her to feel God’s call and
leave behind the world she really doesn’t
know. I, on the other hand, got to know it
well enough.

You did have a boyfriend, didn’t you?



I did have a boyfriend. He was very much
in love with me, and I loved him, but he
never filled me. Of course, I have a past
I am sorry for.

Let’s not talk about those things. I don’t
want to remember past temptations. It
could distract me from my vocation.

How many girls on the retreat talked to you
about a vocation?

Of the forty girls, I had twenty for spiritual
direction and you had twenty. Four of mine
told me they were thinking about a vocation.

And five of mine.

I guess that is a pretty good outcome. Jenny
told me she would like to come to the summer
program, but the rest of mine are afraid.

I have Lia, Erin, and Emily for the summer

That’s really not enough. Valeria wanted us
to have at least fifteen from Michigan.

We should probably get into another school by
January so we might get another girl or two from
there. We’re going to have to work some of
these girls harder in spiritual direction.



We need the girls to start bringing
more girls to the retreats. These girls
aren’t really leaders if they only have
one friend or two. We need the popular
girls, who have groups and friends, who
will all follow our leader into the
summer program.

Girls like Lia may be deep and spiritual,
nd easy to recruit, but they just
aren’t real human leaders. People
don’t follow them.

And then later on they turn out as
washout consecrated…

Like Elise.

But who knows, Lia might have a real
vocation. Give her a year or two in
the boarding school and you might see
her change.

Besides, she is pretty. We want to have
attractive girls at the high school.

And you know what? Her parents have money.
They’re not rich, but they could donate a
lot of money to us.

And having a daughter in the group is always
A good way to get money.


Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Installment Two

Screenplay Act 1 Scene 2


Elena is looking over some papers in her office after the talk. Lia enters timidly. She KNOCKS first.

Hi,Lia. What’s up?

Elena, I know we haven’t had spiritual
direction yet during this retreat. Do
you think we could have it now?

Well, I was going to meet with the consecrated team for the retreat,
but if the Holy Spirit is really speaking to you now, maybe we should
meet now.

Ok, thanks.

Have a seat.
Elena gestures towards a seat on the other side of the desk.


Or would you rather walk? Let’s walk.

Ok. Why do all these offices have windows?

The attitude of the Movement is transparency.
We have windows everywhere so that nothingis hidden or secret, and so that our souls
may be just as clear and open as the windows.



Ok, well anyways, I wanted to talk about
the meditation today. It was really inspiring for me.
Sometimes, I wonder if I really want to live out my life in an office,
just making money or getting up and going
home and then make enough money to buy a house,
then a car, then pay for my kids’
college…Sometimes I just wonder if I have the possibility of making a difference
in the world, of having a more exciting life.

What do you mean? Do you think God is calling you to something?

Maybe. Sometimes I think about going tothe high school and discerning my vocation
to consecrated life.

Well, you know we have the summer program
every year. You could come out to Rhode
Island and discern if that is the place
for you. I will have Isabel send you the information. Do you think your parents
would be opposed? After all, Elise
was consecrated.

I don’t know.

Either way, Lia, God will bless you for your openness.
And speaking from personal
experience, a lot of people are unhappy
in life, and I believe that spending my life doing God’s will is the only truly
perfect way of finding happiness.



What do you mean?

I could be serving God indirectly, by cooking,
cleaning, doing the laundry, but
as a consecrated woman, I served God
directly. That means I wake up and do
God’s work, I go to sleep, and when I do that
according to the schedule my directors set for me,
I do God’s will. I am so happy as a consecrated woman.

Do you mean that consecrated women can
be happier because they serve God in
everything they do?

That’s the idea. Elise must have told you
about our Founder, about Nuestro Padre.


Nuestro Padre went through many difficulties
And struggles in his vocation. He is
a very holy man of God. I recommend you
meditate on his words during these months
before the summer program.
The Holy Spirit will influence you with his words and
lead you towards God’s will.

Ok, thanks.

You can pick up a copy of his latest book
in the bookstore at the school here.


Monday, October 12, 2009

A screenplay: The Cult

By Lotus Point, all rights reserved to her....

Screenplay Act 1 Scene 1



A gorgeous, Mexican woman stands behind a podium in a chapel filled with teenage girls. ELENA is reading with a marked accent.

Now it came to pass, as they went, that
he entered into a certain veellage: and a
certain woman named Martha received him
into her house. And she had a sister called
Mary, which also sat at Jesus’ feet,
and heard his word. But Martha was cumbered
about much serving, and came to him,
and said, Lord, dost thou not care that
my sister hath left me to serve alone?
Bid her therefore that she help me. And
Jesus answered her and said unto her,
Martha, Martha, thou art careful and
troubled about many things: But one thing
is needful: and Mary hath chosen that
good part, which shall not be taken
away from her.

Alright girls, now kneel on your knees
and we will begin the meditation.

The girls GET UP from their pews rather loudly and CLANK onto the kneelers. There is a BLUSTER of notebooks moving around and girls turning around and facing forward again. This is when we notice LIA. She is a pale-faced, serious-looking teenager of thirteen. She is focused and attentive to every word coming from Elena’s mouth. In fact, too attentive.





Let’s start with a composeetion of place.
We are walking along the dusty streets
of Galilee with H-esús and decide to dine
with his dear friends, Maria and Marta.
Let’s enter the cottage and see what is
going on. Marta has been cleaning the house
all day. She dusted. She swept. She even
took a bucket of water from the well
to mop. She caught the fish from the lake.
She cleaned it. And then she cooked it.
There were many hungry men in the house,
and they had to eat. She wanted to sit and
talk with Jesus, but there were many works
to be done. At the same time, her sister
Maria has not lifted a finger to help her.
Maria woke up, bathed, and sat in the
window waiting for Jesus. When he came, she
ran out to meet him, screaming and crying.
Marta would have liked to greet Jesus like
that, but she could not leave the hot stove
with no one to watch it. Jesus came in, and
she stood in the kitchen, while Maria
washed his feet with her hair and kissed
them. Finally, Marta can stand it no more.
She becomes so angry, she goes up to Jesus,
forgetting that they have yet to even say
hello to each other, and she complains!
“Jesus, my sister has not lifted a finger
to help me! Send her immediately to the
kitchen to help me!” Instead of sending Maria
immediately to the kitchen to help her,
Jesus said something else. “Maria has
chosen the better part and it will not be
taken away from her.” You girls can sit down if you

Some of the girls begin to sit down. Some stay fixed in prayer. Lia, especially, has not moved since the beginning of the meditation. Lia takes out a notebook and writes.



LIA(writing)Dear God, please help me to find your will
for me, like Mary. I feel called to
do something more in my life.

ELENA(Continuing the talk)
Maybe some of you have experienced the call
of God. You are at prayer, and you feel that
you need to give more to make the world a
better place. Maybe, you have even felt the
call to be consecrated, to give your life
to God in the Regnum Christi Movement, the
Movement so loved by the Pope and the
Greatest gift to the Church in the
Twentieth Century. Maybe you have felt
the call to spend your youth discerning
your vocation. Maybe you don’t feel sure
yet, but you would like to spend some
time in our high school in Rhode Island
to find out what God wants of you, and spend
the most precious years of your life
looking for God’s will. And God, I, like
Maria, want to choose the better part.
And God, I remember that I don’t need to
be afraid of setbacks. There will be
many setbacks in my vocation. But if I
am brave, you will guide me through all of
them. There is the case of the consecrated
whose parents would not allow her to join the
high school when she was fourteen, and so
she became consecrated inside her house,
and even at eighteen, they still forbid
her. But she told them that she was
eighteen and they could no longer forbid her
from following God’s call, and she walked
out of their house, a consecrated woman.
God, maybe my family will never understand
my call, but I will not quiet its sound
in my heart.


Saturday, October 10, 2009

Thomas Williams Strikes Again.

Remember, Williams defended Maciel on 20/20 back in 2002 and said that all the accusers were lying, since he really knew Maciel....

CBS, Rev. Thomas D. Williams and the Theoconning of America
by Frank Cocozzelli
Fri Oct 09, 2009 at 02:17:47 PM PDT

Recently I discussed the disturbing world view of CBS's go-to rightwing Catholic guy, pundit Rev. Thomas D. Williams, a member of the far right Legion of Christ. This is part of a larger trend that merits further discussion.

Neoconservatives and their theocon allies have had considerable success in getting us to see the world through their eyes; and each other as solely as all good or all bad; enemy or friend. These distortions often contribute to grotesque distortions of fact being presented as given truths.
This Manichean framing has infected the news media, which in turn functioned as a carrier of the disease. Apparently gone are the days of more nuanced newsman such as Edward R, Murrow, John Chancellor or Walter Cronkite, who assumed that we are intelligent enough to think and reason for ourselves; that the world is not black and white (even on TV) but that the news of the world mostly comprises shades of grey, where justice often only approximates the ideal.
The Manicheanism of the media is especially evident on television. MSNBC and Fox News act more like vehicles for affirming their views' current political outlook or, as we have seen with CBS, provide a platform to a Catholic priest whose view of both Catholicism and religious pluralism better reflects the über-reactionary Pope Pius X rather than the reform-minded Vatican II.

As discussed last week, CBS News' analyst Rev. Williams is no ordinary priest or theologian. He is a prominent member of the Legion of Christ, an authoritarian, anti-liberal organization that has a history of cult-like behavior and whose founder, a legacy of promiscuity. Rev. Williams believes that the only truth that should prevail is traditionalist Catholic orthodoxy, and that this worldview should be favored by and reflected in government.

Williams is a perfect example of the way that pundits pass for reporters, telling us what to think and how to act, while democracy is packaged for us as entertainment. The spectacle of media gladiators and bloviators is glorified over the participation of an informed citizenry. While this critique is not new, less well developed is the increasing role of religious right framed presentation of the news, and the risk of discounting the centrality of religigious pluralism as a key to constitutional democracy. One consequence of the creeping theoconism in the media is that we often fall prey to historical revisionism -- the weapon of choice of the Religious Right. Naturally, the narrative that emerges from this history of convenience attacks the very tenets of liberalism, such as religious pluralism as being sinister and evil. Faith and reason are not synonymous, but antithetical entities. Indeed, this is exactly how Rev. Williams approaches it.

For example, in an article he published in Richard Neuhaus's theocon journal, Crisis entitled "The Myth of Religious Tolerance:
Religion is a good to be embraced and defended, not an evil to be put up with. No one speaks of tolerating chocolate pudding or a spring walk in the park. By speaking of religious tolerance we make religion an unfortunate fact to be borne with, like noisy neighbors and crowded buses, not a blessing to be celebrated.

Here it is instructive to recall that modern ideas of religious tolerance sprang from the European Enlightenment project. A central tenet of this project was the notion of "progress", understood as the overcoming of the ignorance of superstition and religion to usher in the age of reason and science.4 In the words of Voltaire, "Philosophy, the sister of religion, has disarmed the hands that superstition had so long stained with blood; and the human mind, awakening from its intoxication, is amazed at the excesses into which fanaticism had led it."

Williams cites Voltaire as if he was the only Enlightenment philosopher to discuss the place of faith in secular society, which was far from the case. But does not stop there: he then goes after the idea of religious freedom itself. He this by first besmirching religious tolerance - the forerunner of contemporary religious freedom, as "exceedingly undesirable and counterproductive":
This definition mirrors that of the American Heritage College Dictionary, which states that tolerance is "(1) a fair and permissive attitude toward those whose race, religion, nationality, etc., differ from one's own; freedom from bigotry. A fair and permissive attitude toward opinions and practices that differ from one's own."

If tolerance is a virtue, it is a decidedly modern virtue. It appears in none of the classical treatments of the virtues: not in Plato, not in Seneca, not even in Aristotle's extensive list of the virtues of the good citizen in his Nichomachean Ethics. Indulgence of evil, in the absence of an overriding reason for doing so, has never been considered virtuous. Even today, indiscriminate tolerance would not be countenanced. A public official tolerant of child abuse or tax evasion would not be considered virtuous.

The closer one examines tolerance and strives to apply it across the board, the more its insufficiency as a principle to govern society becomes apparent. Even if it were possible to achieve total tolerance (which it is not), it would be exceedingly undesirable and counterproductive to do so.

This disingenuous picking and choosing plays itself out later in the piece by going after John Locke:
John Locke (1632-1704) himself, in the midst of his impassioned appeal for religious toleration, notes that of course toleration does not extend to Catholics, Muslims or atheists. "To worship one's God in a Catholic rite in a Protestant country," he writes, "amounts to constructive subversion."

In the end, the question for everyone necessarily becomes not "Shall I be tolerant or intolerant?" but rather "What shall I tolerate and what shall I not tolerate?"

Williams continues:
Locke, on the other hand, dismissively notes that "everyone is orthodox to himself." His own ecclesiology that lacked belief in the existence of any one true church led Locke to the conviction that all Christian churches (except the Catholic Church) should be tolerated. "Nor is there any difference," he confidently wrote, "between the national Church and other separated congregations."

Locke further appeals to the "Business of True Religion." A true Christian,Locke asserts, will dedicate himself principally to a life of virtue and piety, which are the chief concerns of religion. He relegates to a lower tier "outward pomp of worship, reformed discipline, orthodox faith."
His own theological prejudices and political concerns led him to arbitrarily place morals above doctrine, since morals at the time garnered greater unanimity and generated fewer disputes. Their roles have been somewhat reversed today.

Williams cleverly acts as if the Founders never evolved from Locke's own prejudices. In fact they moved beyond Locke from a concept of tolerance to one of religious freedom, thereby enlarging Locke's original concept for the better.

But this is what Williams wrote in a theocon journal not for broadcast on CBS. So why then should we care?

The problem is that Williams is not the only one. In fact, this Theocon priest is the next step past neconservative pundits like David Brooks and Michael Gerson who hold that only the most orthodox teachings of conservative Christianity and Judaism even qualify as "religious" are disproportionately represented in our national media and dominate our religious discourse. In their universe those who people of faith who question such orthodoxies are labeled "quasi-religious" or sometimes simply "secular."

In Williams' universe religious freedom is an obstacle to a more theocratic society. Ironically, were his ideal society to come to pass, while allowing non-traditionalist Catholics to practice their respective beliefs (or non-beliefs) it would subject them to the supremacy of the pundit-priest's faith - an ironic outcome indeed as it would place Williams and his ilk in the same position for which he criticized John Locke.

Apparently, CBS News has either bought into this agenda or perhaps worse, has no clue about what their Catholic analyst of choice is all about.

Personally, I think that Cocozzelli gives this flim flam Williams way too much credit. This is just another example of Legion of Christ long but lite formation.