Tuesday, February 10, 2009

"Something like scales fell from my eyes"

To my beloved Regnum Christi Family

A personal note from Fr. Thomas Berg, LC offering guidance and warmest companionship in the midst of this intense suffering.

Read the whole letter at American Papist.

Dear everyone—

Christ's peace.

I write to you this Sunday morning with my heart in my hand. I know personally that so many of our priests, section directors, have been working for hours on end, meeting with groups of RC, first to break the horrible news and then to accompany them, often themselves reduced to the point of tears. Then there have been the endless follow—up phone calls, private conversations. Believe me, we have all been trying to do everything possible to reach out to all of you personally.

But my heart aches because our best efforts have not been enough. I want to reach out to you as a brother and friend this morning and try to assure you, if nothing else, that we are here. I know further efforts are underway to attempt to respond more adequately and formally to the confusion you all feel, not to mention the hurt and betrayal. I beg you, in the midst of such pain and hurt, please bear with your directors.

At the same time, however, I also beg you forgiveness for the disastrous response which this crisis has received from our upper LC leadership. There is no other way to say it: in so many respects, Legionary superiors have failed, and failed miserably to respond adequately to this crisis, and not surprisingly, have engendered in many of you and understandable lack of confidence. Those are the facts and your reaction is natural and reasonable. With all my heart, on their behalf, I apologize. Our superiors are human instruments; I know in their hearts they have trying to do the right thing, under inhuman pressure. Please understand that.


Anonymous said...

"c. If you still find the letters of the founder helpful in prayer, feel free to use them. But it is certainly OK to leave them aside. Remember that in many ways, the spirit and charism we have lived is Pauline. Continue to nourish your spirit on the letters of St. Paul."

Anonymous said...

What a brave man. He won't see any immediate retaliation against him, but once the dust settles down, I can see F. Berg going to a less visible place or holding a more private post. What do you think Alvaro Corcuera must be thinking now that he finds out legionaries are exercising their god's given right of searching for justice and truth. The private votes are dead. I'm pretty sure they found a way to still them through private spiritual direction, under the mask of personal perfection (even if the church don't sanction these votes as official, that doesn't mean they don't sanctify the individual). I can see some superiors covering those gaps.
Well, the fact is that some legionaries feel like enough is enough. This is not confessional secret. I hope those ethical and moral professor and deans in the Superior Center in Rome, are already reflecting in those facts.

Anonymous said...

Let me tell you this. When you are in inside the system is hard to bite the hand that feeds you. In the end, I know that exist a portion of the congregation that feeds from the sense of identity they find in the Legion. They are institutionalized. The ones that joined for more profound and independent reasons, would find the strength to demand openess. I honestly can not imagine myself being inside and fighting at this point, but I believe, eventually, thanks to the example of other, like F. Berg, I'd eventually lose the scales.
THANK YOU F. BERG! I know you will suffer some repercussions, that still won't change who you are and what you stand for. In the end, Jesus was a revolutionary and died for his beliefs. Thanks to you, many will get the opportunity to speak out and demand that Legion really lives up to what they preach.

Anonymous said...

Berg is probably smart enough to get out.

Anonymous said...

Do you think the Legion will ever accept that Marcial Maciel had accomplices? Not while some of those accomplices are still ruling, right? Will eventually be some justice to the victims of sexual abuse? How is it that the private legionary investigation just came up with evidence about Maciel illegit relationship, but nothing about sexual abuse? Probably because is easier to accept this than latter.

Anonymous said...

It's not about being smart, is about being brave. We are talking about matters of heart and not of brains. Everyone has now the facts in front of them, not all of them, but enough to see through. Who is going to have to heart to back those facts? I'd love to have had the guts to confront legionaries in the middle of some weird conference. I remember when F. Luis Garza visited Spain in 1997 warning us of some filthy lies circulating about "Nuestro Padre". He didn't lay any facts, he choose instead to tell us that a good son wouldn't even allow to hear those lies. Back then I didn't think about Maciel, I imagined my own blood father bein accused of something like that. But I remember thinking this, if my father was to be accused of such acts, I'd try to find out for myself and I think I could have a shot at truth. But in the case about Maciel, how the heck should I be able to know the truth. Back then, probably, my faith wasn't that blind. But still, I didn't have the guts to say that in public. Sometimes I dream standing up or raising my hand, to the surprise of everybody, and externing all my thoughts. Probably they would have expelled me ipso facto. Who cares, they would have saved me from some years of pain and frustration.

Anonymous said...

Fr. Berg will be punnished for this. The Legion does not allow dissent- you can't even say Fr. Superior is a bad soccer player without getting called out in team balance and told you were criticizing. I can't imagine what penance an online letter of this magnitude will merrit in the eyes of the LC.

That said- it was brave, necessary and honest and he deserves tremendous credit and support. We need to hear honesty- at least Fr. Berg is speaking the truth.

-a former superior

Anonymous said...

I don't think he is going to be punished any time soon. It's one of those cases where even the hierarchy listens to you, in fear they'll appear obtuse or blind, but internally you'll be separated from the rest (what the hell was the term to explain when somebody is to be excluded from the community for fear of contaminating the spirit) at least, initially, de facto and later officially. But what cojones this F. Berg has. I wish I had that strenght. I could see him staying for all the wonderful things that he has discovered or cherishes inside, but I hope the upper schelon doesn't hunt him down eventually to send the message that even without private votes, they still can inflict some serious damage to whoever dissents in all aspects, and more in the "persona non perfecta" but even then the choosen one by God to deliver his message.

Anonymous said...

Maybe some day the truth will come out about MILES JESU too!

Anonymous said...

Beautiful letter. This man truly is a man of God. Hopefully the Legions Superiors and fellow LC/RC will follow this Holy lead.

Anonymous said...

1) Berg is playing 'the game' He is trying to be seen in public as a good guy to avoid punishment, which he can if his chip, his new public worshippers ( I mean supporters), is a large enough group. He also did write favorably about reading LC material, etc., just enough to cover his ass, if the regime remains in power.

2) You left out the best part of the letter "Jim Fair our communications director who needs your prayers and has earned a very high place in heaven for what he has had to endure this week"
WOW!!! How bold and brave! Those mean phone calls! For a whole week!!! A very high place, no doubt!!!!!!!
Maybe if I am a faithful dupe, I too will earn a very high place in heaven...

I cannot believe all the Kool Aid drinkers think this crap is a good letter.

Anonymous said...

You know who else wrote beautiful letters?

Anonymous said...

Fr. Berg was my Latin teacher at the LC's minor seminary in '89. He is a bright mind and an honest person. Anybody who has been in the LC's (like I did for 11 years)knows that this statement is a 180 degree shift from what we all experienced in the LC's. This letter would litteraly be inconceiveable a couple years ago.

Fr. Berg is brave. If you have not been in the LC's you have no idea how brave. He is really risking his neck comming out and saying these things. I commend & congratulate him for comming out and being the "light in the darkness". Hopefully, somehow, more of the excellent LC's like Fr. Berg will emerge from the rubble and re-establish a Legion which is what God has probably intended it to be from the beginning.

J. Biltz

Anonymous said...

All naysayers, I understand you skepticism. I am not a Kool-aid drinker or LC/RC.

Of course Fr. Berg is going to stand up for the good people left which might include Jim Fair. Have you EVER heard anything like this from LC/RC? The answer is NO. He stands up for the victims, which includes sexual abuse and all good LC/RC. He tells them to do the uncharitable and unthinkable; speak about this to any and all necessary people inside and out of the Movement, and QUESTION the superiors and directors (what?????). Formerly, he could spend years in the Gulag for comments like that. He speaks horrible behavior of his superiors and MM and writes of contrition.

From the letters content, it appears Fr. Berg is truly interested in the souls and spirituality of all affected. Believe what you want about him or his intentions, but, imagine this letter coming your pastor or a bishop and someone other than LC. I think you would like it and appreciate it. Give someone in this Movement the benefit of the doubt. There is much good and holy in the letter.

Abide by the true meaning of Charity and not the Legion's.

Anonymous said...

The problem for Fr. Berg is the Legion is like the Army they choose where you will be doing "God's work".

After writing a letter as open as his, Alvaro Corrcuera could send Fr. Berg on a "special mission" that consists of cleaning up donkey shit off the streets of Cotija. When in all reality the letter he wrote should make him the next general director. Thank you Fr. Berg for coming out with the truth and not giving us any of this political BS the current superiors are giving us.