Thursday, August 27, 2009

This is Really Getting BAD!

From a recent combox post:

I was fully prepared to give the Legion a chance if they had come out and acted like men after the February announcement. Had they made a public apology, totally renounced Maciel, immediately stopped recruiting, and begged the Vatican to send somebody in to take over for Alvaro&Co (that trio should have been immediately suspended from office), I would have given them a chance.

Instead, the Legion showed its true colors. Whatever they do now, it's much too little and WAY too late. They are a disaster.

I doubt they will be suppressed. I doubt they will even be forced to reform much (they are experts at spin, so I am sure they can make a reformation that sounds great on paper but means absolutely nothing in reality). But I do think that more and more people are on to them, at least in the United States. And I hope that they will just die out eventually (could take many decades, though!), having choked on their own lies and deceit.

In the meantime, their very existence will be a continuing source of scandal for the Church. Oh yes, our Church hierarchy really cares about child molestation! They allow an order of priests founded by a pederast priest to keep right on going, raising money, recruiting 12 year olds into their schools, ordaining priests while being praised to high heaven by Rode&Co. It's so embarrassing as a Catholic to try to defend our faith in light of such behavior by the Vatican. It's a terrible scandal. If I weren't Catholic, I would never even consider joining the Church given that kind of behavior by Church hierarchy. You can tell a tree by its fruit and all that jazz----a Church that praises an order of priests founded by a fraud and a pedophile (an order clearly founded in such a way as to allow that pedophile a constant source of fresh meat and money) and continues to allow same order to recruit little boys is NOT a Church most Americans would be interested in joining.

Photo from The French.


Anonymous said...

I was just this morning talking to my husband about this: I said the EXACT SAME THING!!!

At the same time someone like Kennedy receives a Catholic Funeral.

What the hell is going on here?

Oh, I know ---- hell is about to take over!!!

Mercy! Mercy! Mercy!

Anonymous said...

Unfortunately, this is the truth.
Nothing will change. The vatican does not have the backbone nor the energy to dismantle the Legion. Look at their history of coverups with pedophelia! The Vatican should have let Bennett of Baltimore handle the US investigation. He would have uncovered all the ugliness for all to see.

Still RC - For Now, Anyway said...

Do keep in mind that Rode turns 75 in the fall (September 23 or thereabouts) and will be eligible to have his "requested retirement" accepted by the pope. At the same time the apostolic visitations will be conducted here in the US, with conclusions to the Holy See thereafter. Given this timing Benedict certainly can make some very opportune changes rightly, swiftly, and thoroughly. So I'd look to the fall season for some great action.

I'm still betting that Benedict has already determined what needs to be done with the LC and the AV is just some needed (and likely pastoral) due diligence prior to that.

Anonymous said...

I have to agree with the comments here. The Legion is in complete self-defense mode, suggesting no changes or as few changes as possible. The visitation is unlikely to get to the bottom of things and the Legion and RC will just continue on, doing as much of the same kind of thing as before. There just so many things that make the Church look like a train wreck these days, but we can take comfort in Saint Josemaria's great saying: Our God does not lose battles. Somehow this will all be a win for God some day somehow.

Anonymous said...

I was dismayed to see this photo today ... it's really an insult to the KING OF POP!!!

Still RC - For Now, Anyway said...

Hey Guys, there is no way an apostolic visitation, esp. one in the very short announced timeframe is even meant to uncover financial, sexual, or canonical abuse. This sounds to me like a pastoral visit - show of the Church's support. Now why would Benedict offer support AFTER retiring the founder, AFTER declining to make a statement upon the man's death, AFTER urging the LC to separate (and I mean completely separate) from the person of the founder, and, most recently, AFTER pulling the Legion's own attempt (pathetic though it might have been) to fix things on its own? It really looks to me that Benedict has his own plan for the LC and it's not necessarily what the LC has in store for itself. His visit is out of love for those (or any) priests and brothers of good will who want to be part of this plan - those guys will have the chance to talk. Also to see just how detached from reality these clowns in the leadership are. Won't be hard to see once the AV team starts asking them hard questions. Finally, which institutes stay with the Church and which are shut down.

My own, very uneducated, guess is that based on the complete fraud of the founder, how he used the norms of the congregation he founded to satisfy his own perverse proclivities, AND the congregation's complete inability (or refusal?) to follow Rome's kindly worded advice to separate themselves from the person of the founder - VERY difficult but perhaps not impossible to have done with guidance from the Holy See and perhaps a complete refounding 3 years ago - the game, in the expert opinion of the Holy See, is up. They are through - there can't be a congregation based on the LC's purported "charism" because there is no charism. The Church has declared definitely (in one of the V-II documents) that institutes need to look to the founder for guidance. No founder - no institute.

Anonymous said...

Still RC,

I just really don't buy into this Visitation being for show. If Benedict really has already decided to shut the thing down, why in the world is he still allowing the recruitment of 12 year olds to go on unabated? Are these children just casualties? The price the Pope figures he has to pay to play the politics of Vatican life? These are real live breathing children who are being actively (heavily) recruited even now.

Surely the Pope could have simply asked the Legion to stop recruiting temporarily during the visitation if he truly felt he was going to shut them down eventually.

Meanwhile, the RC are advertising special travel deals to go to Rome in December to celebrate the ordination of 50 or so MORE priests into this organization. These men, too, deserve not to be treated as casualties.

No, I don't believe the Visitation is for show, at least not in the sense that you do. The Legion definitely will treat it as a show and will do their best to deceive the visitators into believing there is so much "good" to be saved. And I have no doubt Alvaro&Co will be downright pandering when it comes to giving lip service about all the "changes" they recognize need to be made.

Just don't hold your breath waiting for a suppression/shut down of the Legion. I will be HUGELY surprised if that happens.

There is way too much $$ and Vatican reputation at stake.

As far as the founder/charism thing, I am quite sure the Legion will find some way to spin it that will satisfy the Vatican. It's all about soundbytes and spin.

Anonymous said...

-----Mouse from AMP ---

I think Chaput is actually a GREAT choice as visitor for the USA--

He's experienced AUTHENTIC religious life, so he'll be even more attuned to anything that's 'off' in the LC interpretation of religious life. (i.e. As my husband pointed out last night, even the CARTHUSIANS get more unstructured free time than the LCs and 3gFs...... And the weird thing about not being allowed to have any personal preferences? Religious life is all about FREEDOM through obedience, not enslavement, and about INNER JOY not putting a mask over your 'bleeding heart.' (Rcisnotmylife's blog has really been eyeopening--and heartwrenching--for those of us watching from the outside)

There's no way the LC can survive, and Benedict and the CDF already have ample documentation on the LCs... they gave them a chance to reform, the LCs ignored it.

I'm pretty sure that they're just trying to figure out the best way to take the congregation apart without doing further damage to the poor men and women already brutalized by Maciel's rules and norms.

Still RC - For Now, Anyway said...

All you despondent Anonymi,

Please have faith in your Church - time will tell.

Not that I have the answers because these are only guesses. But I think the path is much more apparent than it was even a year ago. Praise God for allowing MM's REAL life, sordid as it is, to come tumbling out. It only allows us to see more of the truth about the future of LC, in my view.

But regarding the LC's decision to do "business as usual" now, even during the AV, I note what Pete Vere said earlier - it's not the AV teams' responsibility to tell the Legion how to run itself or it's institutes and apostolates (including RC). In my opinion, if the LC and RC want to play "Nothing to see here folks - move along" that's their (very sad) choice and God and the Church has given them that freedom. They may continue even if shut down - they could spin the news against Benedict and hold out hope for a pope who happens to agree with them, stringing along their members - nothing's to stop them them even from this schismatic act if they choose to.

God doesn't always stop our crazy decisions. But we are held accountable for them and over time the Church as well sees the consequences.

Anonymous said...

Hm well what would the Church benefit from the dissolution of the Legion?

I mean money wise?


Jeannette said...

Scary how much today's photoshopped picture looks like Elvis' later years.

I'm willing to give Benedict the benefit of the doubt: barely a year into his papacy (lightning speed for the Vatican), he gave Maciel the standard punishment for elderly pedophile priests while encouraging LC/RC members to separate them selves from the founder. He then gave 2 1/2 years for them to do so (respecting their free will and giving them the opportunity to reform on their own instead of imposing it from outside.) I, Jeannette, am not surprised that many LC's and RC's ignored the pope and listened to MM and other LC leaders instead, but I appreciate that the pope gave them the chance to leave on their own, with dignity intact. And this year, they have had one more chance to do the right thing. Every LC/RC member now has enough rope to save himself, or hang himself, and I just don't have any sympathy for parents (like I do for the children) who are this fall sending their children to LC schools, or adults who are joining right now.

Anonymous said...

I keep hearing people talk about the money the Legion brings into the Church. I thought the money was going into the Legion. How is the money raised by the Legion a benefit to the Church?

imo, the Church benefits in that there are vocations. Disbanding the Legion could benefit the Church in that the priests who leave may be redeployed into parishes. Under the guidance of a good bishop, these priests could, imo, live a purified form of their vocation and be a true benefit to the Church.

Probably the most complicated part of dissolving the Legion is the business side of things - the properties and all other assets. How to disperse those?


Anonymous said...

To the person who asked if I am despondent.........NOT AT ALL. I have complete faith in God's final justice.

But I believe that God's timing is not our timing. In the space of eternity, what's a few decades? even centuries?

I don't trust our Church hierarchy to protect the faithful and never will again. But I trust in God, and though I may not understand the reasons evil is allowed to go on, I do know that all will work out in the very end.

I think it's possible to be entirely cynical about human behavior while trusting completely in God's love and final justice.

And yes, I am entirely cynical about the church hierarchy at this point. I stay in the Church because 1) I believe it is the Church that Jesus founded; whatever evil might be perpetrated by the people who run it here on earth can never change that, and 2)I believe in the True Presence.

Despite what it probably sounds like here, I am actually quite a cheerful and optimistic person. LOL But my optimism does not extend to believing the LCs will dissolve. My optimism is founded in the belief God will handle it all in the end.

Anonymous said...

Any news from Mr. Ritter? Perhaps he's been caught by his nemesis, the man he mentions often, and been put in a dark dungeon? Or has his time as Official LC Troll come to an end?
(By the way, to one of the correspondents above: PLEASE don't mention your "Saint" Josemaria -one bad slip by JPII which makes us think how close MM was to be fasttracked in the same way... thank God he didn't die before JPII...)

Anonymous said...

"PLEASE don't mention your "Saint" Josemaria -one bad slip by JPII which makes us think how close MM was to be fasttracked in the same way... thank God he didn't die before JPII...)"

I, too, am utterly thankful MM died after JPII, for the same reasons. He would have been put on the fasttrack for sure. Whether the canonization would have been finalized, I don't know. But I feel quite certain his cause would have been started, and that would have been enough of a scandal to the Church in and of itself, not to mention what an abusive insult that would have been to Maciel's molestation victims.

philconnors said...

I am sorry to have insulted the King of Pop memory. It is true that, at least, MJ was a great singer, whose operas are definitely parts of the history.
I just finished a long call with a Legionary deacon, recently ordained. He told me that the Vatican, for the moment, was still supporting the Legion's apostolate. A sign of this: The formation of the superiors of seminary in Leggiuno was maintained (I am wondering what they are teaching them!), and also, coming soon, the formation of the recently ordained bishop in the CES...
I remember that we were told, about the formation of the new bishop, that Cardinal Re choose to make the formation in the CES, because he wanted to show the exemple to the bishops... what's an exemple!


Still RC - For Now, Anyway said...

As to the money question:

The Legion purports that its Christ the King collection (collected at all the Christ the King celebrations throughout the territories of RC and forwarded to the Legion THE VERY NEXT DAY ACCORDING TO THEIR SPECIFIC INSTRUCTIONS) may be presented to the Holy Father in entirety. We were told that's what "NP" would do with the cash. The new theory is that it goes to the Legion to pay for their "Christmas baskets" and other gifts to bribe curial officials and other highly placed church officials who can help them. The timing behind that theory certainly makes a lot of sense.

So no I don't think any money goes to serve the "worldwide needs of the Church" unless you count the LC apostolates and bribing Church officials as worldwide needs. Someone familiar with the notes from the General Chapter meetings can let me know if "NP" listed as one of the goals of apostolic activity to serve the needs of the Church. We certainly know that the schools (one of their primary apostolates) are devised in order to increase vocations to the Legion and consecrated.

As to the vocation question - yes, vocations to the Legion. HOWEVER keep in mind that LC priests do not assist in the parishes (they are really the only congregation not to do so). They operate on a parallel plane.

It's as if they were trying to create a parallel church.

I do know that key formators in our section discussed, as a matter of repeating news from the strategy meetings in the territory, the time when hundreds of bishops would be LC. That was their long-term goal. Hence the heavy emphasis on recruiting.

Not to serve the Church but to BE the church.

But if the LC is broken up then LC priests of goodwill can be deployed into the parishes in which they can do valuable work (and the work they are supposed to be doing anyway as part of the Church).

As to the property - it really belongs to the Church (I think Pete Vere mentioned this) and can be disbursed as appropriate. Giselle's website had some thoughts on this. I actually think the property question is the easiest one. The difficulty would be sorting out the priests and brothers who still have their intellectual faculties intact and those who are complete zombies (and therefore probably not helpful to the Church).

Anonymous said...

That's OK Phil, I'm sure MJ won't mind.

I wonder if MM and MJ are now ... I really do hope MJ found his way to heaven ... MM? ... my sentiments aren't so benevolent...

Jeannette said...

Or maybe Gene Simmons.

Anonymous said...

There is no way the Legion will stand after all this sh.. coming out. If the Vatican does nothing then we all have the responsibility to do it. Thank God we have internet now, many blogs and bloggers. We are a single but strong force dont you realize?

Lets unite, lets sign a petition for the LC/RC to change or surrender. Lets movilize into their schools, apostolicas and comunidades, lets put some heat to the goverments, bishops and media.

We can make it count. Lets move from talking into action.

philconnors said...

I hope he found, nevertheless, some way to heaven, but I fear because I am not sure that God can save a soul that tries to get salvation by himself.

Do you remember: "Lo unico que queda al final de nuestra vida, es lo que hemos hecho por Dios". Totally mistaken theology: the only way to get salvation, is to receive it as poor people, with the empty hands. The temptation of all time has been to find a human way for salvation.

Poor MM. I feel very sad for him.


Anonymous said...

Edmond Ritter: I tell myself that we've hit bottom, and then I find its a false floor and we're falling into a deeper dungeon!

No, I am not yet in Donny's dungeon. Hope Mons Versaldi arrives before that happens... may be a close call.

Those French do have a way with art!

Still RC - For Now, Anyway said...

"I just finished a long call with a Legionary deacon, recently ordained. He told me that the Vatican, for the moment, was still supporting the Legion's apostolate. A sign of this: The formation of the superiors of seminary in Leggiuno was maintained (I am wondering what they are teaching them!), and also, coming soon, the formation of the recently ordained bishop in the CES..."

Phil, the AV can't do it's job if everything grinds to a halt. Surely normal activities must carry on as usual. That does not mean that the Holy See doesn't plan to make, at the very least, major major changes if not dissolving the order. Unless the LC is hearing directly from the Holy Father that they will continue to be supported then I wouldn't put much on this piece of information any more than the other "little signs" that the LC uses to tout Church approval.

Anonymous said...

"Still RC - For Now, Anyway said... As to the money question..."

That reminds me... whenever there was a morning or evening of reflection, there was always a basket asking for a "donation" of $20. I was always so peeved about that. My analytical/melancholy/accounting side always counted the number of women at the reflection (I'd pretend to be stretching my back so I could count the people behind me). $2,000+ per day for an LC priest who's supposed to be practicing poverty. "what's the money for?" "Oh, it's just a stipend for the priest to thank him for his time." Hmm... Anyone care to give me two grand a day for my stipend???

Anonymous said...

What speakers get 2,000 to speak? I mean, in Catholic circles.

Still RC - For Now, Anyway said...

Actually the way it works is that the priest turns the funds over to the Legion (via LC Pastoral Services which is the organization that accepts donations and stipends and disburses tax receipts for the Legion's pastoral activities). Fr. Whoever doesn't see a dime personally (how can he having taken a vow of poverty which I do believe most LC priests actually do live) but the LEGION would benefit big time if the women in that room were able to fork over $2,000. That's huge. Hope your section received a tax receipt for that.

Anonymous said...

Anyone in Atlanta got a recap from the visit of Fr. Alvaro- you know, the co-pilot, co-conspirator of the LC scandal? Did they have orchestrated cheering section and support groups? Did they hire ACORN? It's full of mexican illegals... maybe the Teamsters were there to keep prostestors away. Teamsters are famous at money laundering. Did NAMBLA come to show support? Any pro-poygamy groups?

- 9 years of lies

Still RC - For Now, Anyway said...

Given the time Fr. A would just be finishing up Mass - always scheduled for 1/2 hour (for a daily mass) but takes 45 minutes.

Anonymous said...

I have been a priest for 21 years and love the Church and my priesthood. Thank God, I have a good bishop and am in a healthy diocese. Still, I agree with some of the other readers who are skeptical about how much to expect from Rome. The wonderful thing about the doctrine of the Church's infallibility is that, in letting us know when and how the Church is infallible, it let's us know all the times and situations it's not. This AV is not under a guarentee of infallibility and mistakes, poor judgement and downright dishonesty could make the whole thing a waste of time. How helpful Hilaire Belloc was when he said of the Church "An institution run with such knavish imbecility, that were God not behind it, it would have dissapeared in a fortnight."

I met John Paul II and was part of a small group of priests to speak with him. I was once a "fan". Now I find myself hoping he will not be canonized.

Anonymous said...

It's kind of sad to say this, but agree with the previous poster. Well, I can't say that I hope JPII will not be canonized, but I guess I'd have to say I am so disillusioned with the whole thing that I really don't care about what Rome does or does not do. I'm just going to join my parish, go to Mass, maybe even join an RCIA class -- b/c after so many years in the movement I feel like I need to relearn so much -- and just live out my life in simplicity and blissful ignorance. I'm done giving a shit, sorry Father.

Anonymous said...

I am looking at "my" Church and I just said to my husband that if I had somewhere to go I would leave. Sex abuse scandals that get covered up, pro-aborts and adulterers who get a Catholic funeral, a marxist president who exploits the Catholic Church for his sick agenda, a Catholic Church who lets herself exploited for said Marxist's sick agenda, a perderast and fornicator who receives support from the highest ranking clergy in the hierarchy, lies and deception of said pederast's and fornicator's life that are still ongoing, an episcopate without any backbone, an episcopate in outright disobedience to the Holy See........... and on and on and on......

It makes me sick!


Still RC - For Now, Anyway said...

Just remember folks that even in the Garden God allowed the devil to roam.

Take a look at the quote from Hillaire Belloc above. So true.

Believe it or not the Counsel of Jerusalem threatened to undo the Church way more than this scandal and the other issues of today ever could. Perspective is very important now.

God never promised a cakewalk - I believe he said something about a lot of persecution.

Pardon my cheery "RC-ness" coming through but hopefully I'm untwisting their distorted messages of "perseverance" (used just to keep members from fleeing) to use for a good end.

Anonymous said...

AS for Ted Kennedy and the Catholic Funeral--- Ed Peters (canon lawyer) says that actually, he fits the requirements, esp. since in his last week or so (after Eunice's death) he spoke with a priest frequently AND received last rites.

Remember, the purpose of a Catholic Funeral is NOT to 'celebrate a person's life' or to 'praise their holiness...' It's to PRAY FOR A SINNER and to offer sacrifices...... We never assume someone's in heaven unless they're canonized!

So.... think of the funeral as a charitable work by the church, trying to help a poor sinner through purgatory with our prayers.

The Maciel mess IS a cause for scandal... but the Kennedy funeral? Not so much. (Unless they money with the rubrics to give the president a platform, but the funeral itself is a GOOD thing...)

Anonymous said...

I don't mind in the least that Kennedy received a Catholic funeral (I'm glad he did and hope God grants him eternal peace), but it does burn my Catholic bum that the media covered it so lavishly, giving the appearance that this man was some sort of an exemplary Catholic. THAT is what ticks me off.

Back to the Church. My biggest reason for believing it's the true Church is that it has lasted this long---only an organization founded by God could survive this long given all the injustice perpetrated by it and corruption present within it. LOL It simply MUST have God's protection (gates of hell won't prevail against it, and all that). There's no other explanation for its survival.

aizo said...

From the last poster:
"It simply MUST have God's protection (gates of hell won't prevail against it, and all that). There's no other explanation for its survival."

That's ridiculous, circular logic! The survival of the church is based on people like yourself believing in it and passing it on to future generations.

It's very hard for a religious tradition to die out as shown by the many of you who arrive at this site to discuss one of the clearest examples of the pure humanity of the catholic church and still overlook that fact.

I view attitudes such as that which you have expressed towards the catholic church (I'm not trying to pick on one person, it's a prevalent attitude in these comboxes) in the same way that you all seem to view the attitudes of the die-hard RC and LC who do not accept the naked truths about who MM truly was and what the real purposes of his institutions were. You all express both exasperation and pity for those who still cannot break away from what they have been told to believe, how they have been bred to think about LC and MM despite clear evidence to the contrary. I feel that in the midst of discussing these tragic circumstances you all seem like fish pitying figures in a snowglobe, who don't realize that they themselves are in a tank.

I want to make clear that I mean no ill will by this post. I just wanted to point out a parallel that is so apparent in the hopes that you will consider it with some intellectual honesty. My motto has always been that the one who has the truth has no fear of ideas. I only mention this to illustrate that my attitude is not hostile (I'm used to being yelled at for this kind of thing).

Also, not some rando coming to spam your boards and take advantage of your situation. I was in NH for 5 years.

Anonymous said...

So I take it you left the Church, Aizo?

I don't blame anybody who does. However, I do still believe Jesus is God, which is not at all parallel to believing Maciel the deviant to be a saint. And I believe the Church was founded by Christ, who was NOT deviant or evil in any way.

I guess if I am wrong, I will have to eat crow when I die. In the meantime, I will continue to try to live up to the ideals Christ preached.

As far as the offense you seemed to take about the "circular" thinking, the LOL was meant to indicate I was being tongue-in-cheek.

I'm sorry that your 5 years in NH seems to have left you feeling pity for all those who believe other than you do. You may not intend ill will, but you do come across as quite rude. That's probably why you get yelled at so much. ROFL!

Some people are better than others at diplomacy---online and elsewhere. Obviously it's not your strong point.

Anonymous said...

Though I understand the underlying logic of comparing the Catholic Church as a whole to the LC/RC, I don't agree with it and believe that it is based on flawed premises.

Even if one does not believe he is the Son of God, I'm not sure how one could equate Jesus of Nazareth with Marcial. As well, to compare a religion that is two thousand years old with a movement that is not even a century in age is problematic.

If one accepts what Jesus and the New Testament have to say about the Church, than one must expect that it will contain the very best, and the very worst that humanity has to offer. It is the field where wheat and weeds grow up together, the net that catches every sort of fish, etc. There are deep blemishes in her history, but she has, throughout that history, produced giants of virtue. People who in the common perception of humanity deserve to be called "saints". This while preserving the learning of the Grec-Roman world, founding the first hospitals and universities, and in general, creating Western Civilization (how many of the P.C. crowd would want to live under Shari'a law, deal with Hindu prejudices reagding women and caste, or conform to the very non-individualistic norms of Confucian societies?).

She may be flawed and governed with "knavish imbecility" in her humanity, but she's the only church we were given (with all due respect to the 3200 Christian denominations that fiil the American religious landscape).

Belloc once said "Wherever the Catholic sun doth shine, there's plebty of laughter and good red wine. Benedicamus Domine!" Let's laugh a little more (otherwise we'll have to cry)>

Aizo said...

I wasn't commenting on the deceptions of maciel bearing on Jesus himself. I was trying to point to similarities between the institutional thinking within the lc and the thinking within the church. In both cases it seems to me that too many things are taken for granted by members as untouchable or unquestionable and that this tends to inhibit the outing of truths, lies and misconceptions.

I did not mean that I feel pity for anyone who believes other than me. The hubris in a mindset like that is overwhelming. What I meant is that I pity those who cling to things such as the rc/lc talking points, or really any other argument that stands on authority alone to the point of killing off their ability to be intellectually honest.

In likening the church to the legion I merely meant that the complicity that seems to have been necessay by members of the magesterium to allow this situation to have gotten to this point is practically criminal, moral judgements aside. What that does or doesn't mean to a catholic about trusting the the Vatican for guidance moving forward seem to be relevant questions (not my place to even propose a direction on that).

Also, hit the nail on the head as to my lack of diplomacy! I'm pretty awful on that front. I'm not a jerk, I just never got a knack for saying things accessibly. We all have our various faults that hold us back!

Anonymous said...

"In likening the church to the legion I merely meant that the complicity that seems to have been necessay by members of the magesterium to allow this situation to have gotten to this point is practically criminal, moral judgements aside. What that does or doesn't mean to a catholic about trusting the the Vatican for guidance moving forward seem to be relevant questions (not my place to even propose a direction on that).

Also, hit the nail on the head as to my lack of diplomacy! I'm pretty awful on that front. I'm not a jerk, I just never got a knack for saying things accessibly. We all have our various faults that hold us back!"

I'm completely with you here. I have definitely been questioning my trust in the Vatican from this point forward, as I would imagine many of us are. This whole incident has forcefully reminded me of the fact that just because a pope says it, doesn't make it so.

Some years ago I began to wonder why it is that nowadays it is practically heretical in many Catholics' eyes to question the Pope's judgment, or even his morality in decision-making. I mean, we KNOW from history that we have had Popes who were rogues, cads, whore-mongerers, probably even murderers. Why do we think we are SO very special nowadays that we might not have a Pope who could do some serious damage in our Church? (whether intentionally or not). Why are we so shocked at the notion of a Vatican full of corruption? Why do we seem to check our brains and critical-thinking ability at the door when it comes to Popes?

I respect the office of president of our great country. I don't always like or agree with the person holding that office. That doesn't mean I am not passionately patriotic about my country. Why can't it be the same with Popes? Unless speaking in very specific situations, Popes are fallible, too. Where does it say we have to like them or agree with everything they say?

Re: being a jerk. Nah.....I wouldn't call you that. So perhaps your tact needs a little work; nobody's perfect.

Anonymous said...

I'm the one who posted the comment ending with the Belloc quote "Wherever the Catholic sun..." Thanks for clarifying your views, I see exactly where you're coming from and am sympathetic to what you're saing. I especially like the last post. There IS a curious kind of "hyper orthodoxy" around these days that treats modern popes as infallible in every way, rather than within the narrow strictures posited by Church teaching.

When I was in seminary (I am a priest 21 years ordained)one of the best bishops in Canada gave us a talk and said something memorable. "Men" he said "the Church is made up of essential and non-essential elements. The problem with much of the Catholic left is that they treat essentials as non-essentials. And the problem with much of the Catholic right is that they treat non-essentials as essentials."

We seem to have a lot of well meaning folks who think everything a given pope says or does is an essential element of the Church and hence beyond criticism and question. Not a very healthy attitude, especially in this day and age. We need to become a people who can intelligently question, criticize and even protest within the rather wide parameters the essential elements of the Church set for us.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the last posts. A little knowledge of Church History would help to put things in perspective. If we lived during the "Iron Century", that's what my Church History professor called the 900s, we would be much more inclined to call the 1900s a Golden Age for the Papacy. This stuff of a priest-founder being an insane pederast monster -- which he was -- is child's play compared to the antics of popes and kings back then. And I would not be surprised if from heaven, in about a thousands years' time, we can all agree that we were in fact living in a golden age of the Church. I recommend a tranquil reading of old Church History to chill out a little.
Thanks for the perspective go to the last two posts.
Edmond Ritter

Anonymous said...

Barring heavenly intervention and some LC leadership behind bars for conspiracy, I sadly suspect that the Legion will continue in some form.

But I tell you what, any parent that would allow his minor son to enter an LC seminary from here on out is feeding the monster. Orthodox parents: don't count on Rome to protect your sons, do it yourself!


Anonymous said...

That's mere common sense, Fr Michael. The leadership needs a thorough psychiatric analysis to explain to me what they have been doing the last 15 plus years. A mere police investigation and general audit will not cut it.
PS Do I know you Fr. Michael?

Pete Vere said...

ER wrote: "This stuff of a priest-founder being an insane pederast monster -- which he was -- is child's play compared to the antics of popes and kings back then."

However, you should also view this through the perspective of the peasant. Blogs, demands for apostolic visitation, and CNN interviews also were not possible technologically back then. So when the clergy reached a particle level of corruption, out came the pitch and pitchforks.

Anonymous said...


Are you the same "Edmund Ritter" (I do note the o vs. the u spelling) who posted on Rod Dreher's blog back in February? (

I'm asking because THAT "Edmund Ritter" speaks of having been "thrown out" (his words, not mine) of the Legion in 2003. That Edmund Ritter also proposes, at length, the hypothesis of Dissociative Identity Disorder as having been an explanation for MM's behavior. And vehemently denies the credibility of accusations of pedophilia while pointing out that there have been ex-legionaries out to get Maciel for many years.

I know that others here have vouched for your existence, but I don't know if anybody has vouched for your existence as a CURRENT Legionary?

I'm not trying to be mean here, just trying to make sense of this. Are there TWO Edmond Ritters who believe Maciel had DID?
Or are you just having fun with us in trying to portray yourself as somebody still within the order trying to make changes?

Whoever you are, please know that you are in my prayers. I do not doubt that you have been through terrible abuse at the hands of Maciel's organization.

Anonymous said...

To: Anonymous poster (Aug. 29, 8:54 pm)

Thanks for sending us to so we can read the Feb. 5th post from a certain Edmund Ritter. He states: "I believe [MM] is rather the victim of abuse than a deliberate abuser of others. Probably there is zero culpability on his part."

Sounds like someone is still brainwashed to me...

Nearly Two Decades of Lies

Anonymous said...

I hold that it's not impossible that MM is not in hell. He was simply too out of his mind to be fully aware of what he was doing, for whatever reason that drove him, call it DID or diabolical possession. If I wrote simply that MM was immaculate, had zero culpability, it must be out of context. To claim him immaculate is at least as strong as saying that he is absolutely and necessarily in hell. We human beings cannot know either state unless God reveals it. I don't recall writing that statement, but if I did, it would be reacting to the over-the-top negativity in the comments in general. I do not deny that much evil was done here in the LC, but to not acknowledge that there are good people too, to cast such blanket condemnations of the whole on account of the part, seems to me, as I said elsewhere, a touch Marcielian - that's what MM used to do and I hated it. Justice calls for punishing the evildoers, not the evildoers and innocent together. Edmond Ritter

Anonymous said...

The point is, Edmond, that you posted that you had been "thrown out" of the Legion in 2003. And that you were glad the Legion was no longer your problem, "It's amazing to see that non Legionaries should even want to stick their nose and comment in what is not their business. It was my business. Now it is not. I am quite happy about it."

To my knowledge, the Legion does not take people back in who have been thrown out by Maciel. So you were either lying on Rod Dreher's page or are lying here.

I think it's apparent that you are in pretty rough shape emotionally/psychologically, and I pray you get the help you need.

It's probably safe to say that your credibility will be practically nil here now that it's been shown that you have been lying on the comboxes. Is this some sort of game for you? Do you think we are that stupid? Did you learn that well from Maciel, the master of deception?

I wish you well, but please don't waste our time with rambling illogical commentaries that we now know are very likely based on falsehood. Your posts full of lies are non-existent to me now.

Anonymous said...

Edmond Ritter.

Anonymous said...


Are you Sand Pounder?

(Those of you who have been regulars over at AmP since the story broke in Feb will know who I am talking about.)

I do worry about you.

Pete Vere said...

Concerning ER - I too wondered initially whether ER was SP from the AmP blog (Sorry for the alphabet soup, folks!) After all, their mindset and writing styles contain many similarities. However, other discrepancies rule this out. SP claimed to be living in America with his wife and children, if I recall correctly, while ER states that he's a priest in Rome. (Please, given the fragile emotional state to which ER admits to being in, no jokes about following the charism of the founder.)

Additionally, a mutual friend has vouched for ER and explained the situation to me privately. This friend has spent years helping Maciel's victims seek justice, and his information has always checked out. So I'm inclined to believe ER is who he says he is.

Anonymous said...

Thank you, Pete.

So which "who he says he is" are we going with? The ER who was thrown out of the Legionaries in 2003 or the ER who is currently in Rome, part of the Legionary Underground? That's a pretty major discrepancy.

I have no doubt there is much more to the story, and I wish ER (whoever he is) healing and peace, but I'm afraid nothing he posts here again will really be believable considering he is posting different stories in different places.

Be well, ER, SP, whoever you are. I truly do hope for nothing but peace for you. May God grant you healing.

Pete Vere said...

"I have no doubt there is much more to the story..."

That's what our mutual friend said when I mentioned the discrepancy, but he would not tell me more out of respect for ER. Moreover, as a canon lawyer I have encountered several credible and not uncommon situations where something happens like the situation ER describes. And let's not forget that ExLC, who tends to be in the know about these things, has vouched that he's been in touch with ER, and that his story checks out. (After ER stated on several occasions that he worked with ExLC in the Legion).

So the story checks out.