Wednesday, May 27, 2009

A Comment on the St. Louis Catholic Blog Story Below

I have plenty of stories that could show the frailty and vunerability of that school. Not only that, but the Legionares of Christ is an evil, evil operation that is not following with the Catholic Church. It disturbed me, even as a child, at how much they basically 'worshipped' this priest "Father Marcial". They even had a special day (which could be likened to a holy day) for this "founder" of the Legionares. It makes my stomach churn when I remember all the things that they did to my family and I, persecuting us and driving us out because my parents refused to join some association that basically made them give more money to the school. Oh, and may I point out that their problems with the high school started at least six years ago. When I was in seventh grade, they had a meeting for the parents where they basically begged all the parents to stay at Gateway Academy and not send their children to other high schools. The school is a cult. It's depressing that such a thing has to happen. There are so many psychological scars that my brother and I have from being treated so terribly at that school. We still struggle with them even today.

Letter To Gateway Parents

Published on Saint Louis Catholic

May 20, 2009
Dear Gateway Parents:

I would have hoped to tell you this at tonight's meeting, but as many of you already know, we have come to the difficult decision to close Gateway Academy High School. And I also want to stress that this decision does not impact our Pre-K through 8 program, which will open as usual in the fall.

I would like to extend a heartfelt thanks to each and every one of you for being a part of the Gateway Academy community, for all you are doing and what you have done, to build this school. Gateway is far more than an academic institution. It is a gift from God that gives all of us the opportunity to know and love him more and to sanctify our lives.

Gateway was started by some of our outstanding parents with the goal of making Catholic education affordable for all. The school has been extremely successful in many ways, blessed by so many wonderful, generous families-parents, students, staff, faculty, and benefactors.

As you know, each year we have operated at a deficit. Our benefactors have generously assisted Gateway Academy by covering the deficit. But in the current economic environment, it is a lot to expect the same generous level of support from our benefactors. It became clear earlier this year that we needed to seek out a way to continue to fulfill our mission and to do so in a financially responsible and sustainable manner.

We have had to look at many possibilities. We have invited other sources to provide reviews of our school, both internally and externally, including the recent accreditation visit. We retained Catholic Schools Management to concretely identify ways and means to advance our school.

As recently as this past March we intended on fully financially supporting the school. The School Board and administration have worked hard to improve the situation, but the financial recession has intensified the problem. In particular, past subsidies from the Legion are simply not going to be available in the foreseeable future.

Hence, we have had make some very difficult decisions to make in order to achieve financial stability. The existing financial state of Gateway Academy, the current economic conditions, and the extensive competition of the High school market here in the St. Louis area have all contributed to the conclusion that we can no longer operate in the same manner.

After much study, deliberation and prayer the Board of Directors arrived at the very difficult decision that we will have to close Gateway Academy High school. We are deeply saddened by this and for our school community. But we believe it is the responsible thing for us to do at this point.

From a practical standpoint, high school third-quarter transcripts will be available by Friday, May 22. And final transcripts should be available around June 3. Pre-paid tuition and fees for high school students will be refunded.

I know that this decision is especially hard on the students who would be incoming seniors in the fall. Therefore, we want to work with the families of those students and if there are at least 10 who are interested, we will offer a senior program to them so they can graduate from Gateway as anticipated. If you have questions, please contact my office and we will do all we can to assist you. And please keep everyone in the Gateway family in your prayers.

In Christ,

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Another Gateway Comment

I am still struck by the arrogant and very unchristian postings by many die-hard supporters of GA. This is definitely NOT due to the economy. We left the lower school last year as did many other families who gave much time and effort to the school. When they began to uncover the lies, many, like us, began to ask hard questions. That was not allowed at GA. You instantly became the victim of character assassination by many in power. My children have had a full year at a new school, and I can't believe the changes for the better. They are happy, secure, and feel a real love of learning for the first time. Those families left at GA need to face reality and realize that they are victims of many lies.

This one from Life-After-RC

A Comment on Gateway


I agree with those warning everyone of the problems with Gateway Academy. Doing any research on Fr. Maciel and the Legionaries of Christ will yield much controversy. If one looks at the way the Legionaries do business, they find a group of orthodox Catholics and manipulate them into giving the Legion money and their children through their apostolates. Their apostolates are often hijacked from people that have worked hard to get them up and running. The FAMILIA apostolate is an example of this; and Gateway is also an example of this. Gateway was formed by good Catholics looking to make a school that was orthodox and would preserve the Catholic faith. When the Legionaries hopped on board, things began to change

The Legion may have many decent people affiliated with it; there is no doubt about that….but that does not mean the organization is good. The organization uses Catholicism to its own ends. Fr. Maciel used orthodoxy to his own ends.

To the comment on referring to the pope for an answer on the Legion….this is getting kind of old. The Pope did act in 2006, but the Legionaries manipulated what the RC members understood by the communique. The communique was not anything but punitive. Research what the communique means. Do not just follow what the Legionaries tell you the communique meant. The Legionaries were lied to by their superiors and the lay movement was lied to. I am so sick of people thinking the Legionaries are “transparent”. Pope Benedict also took away the 4th vow that the Legionaries make……it is silly to keep saying refer to the Pope. And is it not Pope Benedict that is mandating the apostolic visitations? He is not duped by the glitz and glam of the Legionaries.

It is true that many people may have been served well by Gway. The people are good there…there are wonderful teachers there. But that does not take away the fact that the Legionaries are filled with duplicity. If you serve the Legionaries and their ends, then you are blessed by them. If you question their methodology or them, then you are an “enemy” of the Legion or the school and you are not in God’s will.

A final point about Gway in particular: We began in the school in ‘99 and left a few years ago before the Maciel scandal hit. Even before the Maciel scandal came out, this school had so many ups and downs and so many changes in staff, I often wondered how it could be healthy for them to have total upper school changes every few years. There was two major turnovers in teachers during our time there….does that not make anyone pause for reflection?????!!!! I now see that the reason why was because these teachers and staff must have not been on board with the LC/RC mission…therefore, they were not useful to the LC’s, and thus, they had to be cut off.

— former GA parent 2
6:02 am May 26th, 2009

The Ever Strange Bedfellows of the Legion of Christ

Mel Gibson Tells Jay Leno About His Eighth Child: 'I Guess I'm Octo-Mel!'
By Cynthia Wang
Originally posted Monday May 25, 2009 09:20 PM EDT

Looking relaxed and clean-shaven in jeans, a white shirt and a blue jacket, actor and director Mel Gibson gamely answered questions about his relationship with musician Oksana Grigorieva and confirmed her pregancy during his 21st guest appearance on NBC's Tonight Show, airing Monday night. In fact, Jay Leno set the tone for the evening by saying there were a lot of rumors to clear up. He then asked Gibson about his split with Robyn, his wife of 28 years. Gibson, 53, said he took the blame for the divorce. "My wife and I, our marriage ended three years ago and we've been separated ever since then," Gibson said. "These things happen. It's unfortunate, it's sad, but you know she is an admirable woman – we still got kids together. We're friends."When Leno pressed Gibson by asking, "So what happened?" Gibson replied, "Look. When it's all said and done, I did a pretty good hatchet job on my marriage myself. I'm to blame. If you're inclined to judge, put it here." Leno then joked with Gibson about his dating a younger woman. "What, is she 17, 18?" Leno asked. Gibson replied that Grigorieva was almost 40 and "now I am going to have two women mad at me!" Leno then said, "The rumor I have heard is that you guys are going to have a child?" Gibson then confirmed, "This is true. We're gonna have a child." Piling it on, Leno joked, "So that will make 29? " Quickly, Gibson responded, "Well, actually eight. I guess I'm Octo-Mel."

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Much More on Gateway and the Legion of Christ

Gateway Academy in Chesterfield to close its high school
St. Louis Post-Dispatch

Gateway Academy, a private Catholic school in Chesterfield for preschoolers through twelfth grade, will close its high school in the fall.

Administrators met with parents Wednesday night to tell them the news. They told parents there weren’t enough students to sustain the high school and they could balance the budget with only the grade school open, said parent Anastasia Rothkopf.

“It’s a wonderful school, and we’re really sad, but the reality is the economy is not great,” she said. “People have lost their jobs, and now we’re scrambling for a high school.”

Gateway opened in 1991 to 56 students in kindergarten through eighth grade. By 1996, the school went up to twelfth grade. The school has more than 400 students, and the school would have enrolled 60 students in the high school next year.

The school employs 21 high school teachers, but it is unclear how many of them will lose their jobs. Gateway officials said they would issue a statement about the closing later today.

Tuition for seventh through twelfth grade is $9,700.

Two of the Rothkopf’s seven children graduated from the school, and two attend currently. Their son, Benjamin, would have entered his freshman year at Gateway. Now, it looks like he will attend Marquette High school in the Rockwood School District. The Rothkopfs will also pull their second grader, Lydia, from Gateway and enroll her in Rockwood schools, mainly because she has health issues and the public school district can better serve her, they said.

“It’s like there’s been a death in the family, everybody is just saddened by it,” Rothkopf said. “The school was just more than a school, it was a community, like most Catholic schools are.”

The school was started by a group of people in the Regnum Christi movement, an apostolic movement in the Catholic church. The group patterned their school after schools started in Mexico by the Legionnaires of Christ, a religious order. Gateway teaches the Catholic faith but is not affiliated with any parish nor with the archdiocese.


I graduated from Gateway a few years ago and heard the news today. I’m not entirely sure if I personally agree with the statement above likening this event to the death of a family member. A number of people I know who graduated from the school are alright with having it go. I can’t even begin to explain the magnitude of shady politics and hypocrisy that went on behind the scenes at this institution (concerning the administration). However, I have learned a great deal academically from Gateway Academy and pray that its great teachers (Dr. Griesbauer is my favortie) find employment soon.

— Gateway Alum
7:45 pm May 21st, 2009


Gateway has been a wonderful place for our children. We planned on our kids graduating from there. My daughter would have been a Freshman next year. We are now looking for other options.
Our son will stay at Gateway. What happened in the upper school is unfortunate, but the kids that now get the opportunity to use high school quality facilities during their lower school years will truly be the luckiest kids in town! I encourage families to consider Gateway for their young children - it is an amazing place, and many great things happen there everyday.
Now is the time to stay positive,consider the families,staff,children who have to endure this.
It is our responsibility as good citizens to be kind.

— Lisa Lineback
1:56 pm May 22nd, 2009

Gateway was run by a highly controversial, secretive and scandal-ridden religious order called the Legion of Christ. We urge St. Louis Catholics to carefully research the track record of this outfit.

David Clohessy
National Director, SNAP
Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests
7234 Arsenal Street
St. Louis MO 63143
314 566 9790

david clohessy
4:24 pm May 22nd, 2009

As a past parent at Gateway Academy, I can say that I feel for the parents and kids. However, this school is run by a corrupt, manipulative and deceitful organization. They do not care about the well-being of the students or the parents. It is nothing short of a disaster. The grade school will be next. It is a shame because there are some wonderful families at the school. Unfortunately, they are being manipulated and lied to by the administration. I pray that the families will find new schools. There are many good institutions and wonderful people outside of Gateway Academy. I would strongly caution anyone looking at Gateway for elementary school. They may have wonderful facilities, but that is about it as far as education.

— prior gateway parent
7:28 pm May 22nd, 2009

Well, truthfully as a somewhat niave graduate of Gateway Academy, I was very shocked to hear of this news. We always joked about something like this happening but never thought it would, we always assumed the opposite, that Gateway Academy would build a college.

I would like to take the time to offer my condolences to all faculty, staff, and students who were adversely affected by this news.

Although, I mourn for those hurt by this decision, as a graduate, I am somewhat relieved to see this high school’s reign of terror coming to a close. As for most teens, attending this high school was probably one of the hardest things I have ever had to do. I say this as a recent college graduate who is now out in the ‘real-world.’ For a school that claimed to be so Catholic, so much evil took place there. Anything from the typical lies and manipulation from fellow students and administrators to things far worse (including an assault from a parent of one of my classmates).

As I said earlier, I have the utmost empathy for all of those negatively affected by the situation but at the same time feel that this is the poetic justice that many of us deserve. It is important to remember that there are always consequences for our actions. I wish all of those affiliated with this institution the best as they go forth to rebuild their careers and personal lives.

— Gateway Alum
9:53 pm May 22nd, 2009

I have nothing but good things to say about Gateway and the Legionaries of Christ. We have had all 6 of our kids at Gateway. We have been at Gateway for almost 10 years. We consider it a gift to the Church and a gift to our family. We are thankful that we will continue to have the opportunity to educate our lower school kids there. I am sorry that anyone else may have had a bad experience there.

For anyone who has questions regarding the Legionaries of Christ, I would refer them to the Pope.

— annette keipp
10:23 pm May 23rd, 2009

You may not want to refer parents to the Pope after the visitation from the Vatican is completed.

— prior gateway parent 7:09 am May 24th, 2009

More on Gateway and the Legion of Christ

This is from a parent who was present at the announcement of the closing of the highschool.

It seemed to me that Fr. Reilly was there, talking points in hand, to impersonally announce a fait accomplit. Neither he, nor anyone else on stage, intended to entertain any alternatives, since all suggestions from parents were brushed aside. Father's fantastical characterization of the apostolic visitation revealed that he was either poorly informed about it himself or that he was intentionally misleading the parents as to the import of the process. He told us how happy they all were about the visitation, describing it as if it were to be a friendly chit chat with a bishop and a couple of his friends which would not have any significant consequences, such as a change in leadership or organization.

We have to keep in mind that there are a lot of skeletons on the high school side: brutalized teachers, administrators, students whose stories would be problematic if related to visitators. Perhaps having them all off campus is an attractive idea. One cannot dispute the fact that closing the high school does enhance their financial picture, reflecting fiscal responsibility. If their finances come under scrutiny, they will need to be sound, lest they lose their foothold in St. Louis. To this end, there are 33 acres there (mostly unused) very valuable real estate. This move also allows the option of selling off US assets to fund post visitation reformation elsewhere.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Here Goes...

Well, it seems that the students found out about the closure of the Gateway High before the teachers. Must have been nice...

Now for Scotty:
On why waiting so late in the school year to announce this
"we just couldn't pull the trigger"

On the Apostolic Visitation:
"there are two kinds of Visitation: one high and one low. We are under the low one"

On the reason for closing the high school:
"the drop in the stock market and registrations were down: from 100 to 60"

Is this dude for real? Well Scott, you certainly have gotten no smarter over the years. When all of those blogs talk about fudging grades in the Legion of Christ to promote people through to ordination, making way for not very bright superiors, they are talking about YOU.

There are no types of Apostolic Visitation. Each one is tailored to the particular need. That is reality and plain old common sense.

These guys might sound wonderful to you with their platitudes, but put them in an adversarial situation, and they show their lack of brains and their patterned responses. Just take a look at Thomas Williams' interview with Bryan Ross a few years ago.

AND AGAIN: why lie about things? why make up stuff?

NB Fr. Scott Reilly is the Territorial Director of the Legion of Christ in the southern United States, based in Atlanta, GA.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Great Scott!

Stay tuned for the weird statements made by Scott Reilly at Gateway Academy in St. Louis (Chesterfield, MO) as he announced the closing of the high school there yesterday.

Details tomorrow.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

No More Gateway Academy High

Rumors have reached this blogger that Gateway Academy in Chesterfield, MO will be closing its high school's doors very soon. Expect a visitor tomorrow to break the news. Stay tuned.

Is this the beginning of the end of Legion of Christ institutions as parents want their kids away from this group? Don't despair, kids, there are better places to be.

Someone Cares! Spanish Translation.

Alguien le importa.

¿Ha pasado Ud. por el trauma de salirse de su propia Congregación –Orden- Religiosa, o al menos contemplarlo, y quedarse destrozado pero todavía lleno de celo por la Iglesia y sin saber a dónde ir ni en dónde comenzar? Entonces quizá pueda comprender la historia de la Sociedad Misionera (Mission Society of Mandeville), una comunidad vigorosa de hermanos y sacerdotes que se encuentra en Jamaica, en el Caribe. Un ex-Legionario la visitó hace unos años.

Esta Sociedad Misionera fue fundada por el primer obispo de Mandeville, Monseñor Paul M. Boyle, quien había sido Superior General de los Pasionistas y hace una década fundó la nueva sociedad a instancias de la Propagación de la Fe. Es una sociedad diocesana de vida apostólica que ha recibido varios documentos de aprobación a nivel diocesano y también un Decreto de Felicitación [Decree of Encouragement] de parte del episcopado de Jamaica, encabezados por el Presidente de la Conferencia Episcopal.

Los primeros miembros de esta sociedad misionera pasaron por algo muy semejante a lo que están sufriendo los Legionarios en estos momentos. Ellos pertenecían originalmente a los Hijos de María, un grupo canadiense que perdió el rumbo y que ahora está en cisma con la Iglesia Católica debido a un falso misticismo y actitudes torcidas en que no podemos abundar ahora. Conociendo también a los Hijos de María, este ex-Legionario sabe que había algunos elementos sanos en esa Congregación que se parecen exactamente a características legionarias. Tanto así que en los años 80 los Hijos de María era los únicos religiosos con los cuales los Legionarios de entonces tenían permiso de tratar. Su devoción a la Eucaristía y a la Sma. Virgen María, junto con su fidelidad al Papa eran similares a la espiritualidad legionaria.

En una palabra, los Hijos de María era un congregación católica internacional activa en Italia (dos diócesis), en Francia, en Canadá, en los Estados Unidos, y en Jamaica. Cuando la congregación se desvió un grupo de estos religiosos salió de los Hijos de María en bloque; mantuvieron su fe y el deseo de servir la Iglesia como religiosos y sacerdotes, salvando lo salvable de su comunidad original. Quedaron muy golpeados. La separación de su querida congregación les dolió hasta el fondo de su alma. ¡Pero por medio de esta “muerte” brotó nueva vida! Estoy seguro que algunos de Uds. que lean esto encontrarían comprensión entre estos hermanos y sacerdotes. Quizá alguno se anime a unirse a ellos.

Dios ayudó a este grupo de valientes que este ex-Legionario conoce personalmente. Providencialmente, el obispo de Mandeville había estado por algunos años antes de estos tristes hechos con la inquietud de fundar una Sociedad dedicada a vida misionera en el caribe. Cuando este grupo quedó tan trágicamente tocado decidió lanzar su proyecto y fundar la Sociedad Misionera. Se armó de valor y pidió a los ex Hijos de María si querían entregarse a formar un nuevo grupo. Después de mucha oración y largo discernimiento, el núcleo de ex- HdeM aceptó la propuesta del obispo. En ese momento el obispo fundó oficialmente la Sociedad y le dio sus estatutos. El primer superior general elegido fue precisamente Monseñor Michael Palud quien es el actual Vicario General de la diócesis de Mandeville. El es también el traductor oficial de la Conferencia Episcopal de las Antillas. Su mail es La Sociedad tiene su página en

Luego, después de la fundación, otros miembros entraron. La mayoría de los miembros son trilingües y hablan inglés, francés e italiano. Algunos de ellos hablan también el español y el portugués. La Sociedad tiene una escuela secundaria, una casa para niños abandonados, una casa de retiro y varias parroquias. Hace unos meses el Cardenal Días de la Congregación de la Evangelización de los Pueblos recomendó a otro prelado del Caribe, Monseñor Robert Rivas, O.P., arzobispo de Castries, que pidiera ayuda para su diócesis a la Sociedad Misionera de Mandeville.

Piénsenlo bien….por los puntos comunes, quizá esto podría ser una solución para algunos de Uds. Reflexionen sobre las posibilidades que esto podría generar para la Iglesia del Caribe. ¡Estoy seguro que les recibirían con los brazos abiertos!

Sunday, May 17, 2009

People Really Do Care About You!

From Life-After-RC:

Have you had the traumatizing experience of leaving your own Congregation, or contemplating doing it, heartbroken yet still full of zeal of the Church and not knowing where to go or where to start? Perhaps you could relate well to the Mission Society of Mandeville, a vibrant community of priests and brothers found in Jamaica, West-Indies (the Caribbean). An ex-Lc visited them some time ago.

This Mission Society was Founded by the first Bishop of Mandeville, the Most Rev. Bishop Paul M. Boyle, former Superior General of the Passionist Order upon the urging of the Society for the Propagation of the Faith in Rome almost a decade ago. It is a diocesan Society of Apostolic life which has received a number of diocesan approvals as well as a Decree of Encouragement from the Bishops of the island nation of Jamaica, including the President of the Episcopal Conference.

The initial members of this missionary society went through something very similar to what the LC's are going through. They belonged to the Sons of Mary, a Canadian group which basically "went mad" and is now in schism with the Church because of false mysticism and other warped attitudes too long to describe here. Having also known the Sons of Mary, this ex-LC also knows that there were some healthy spiritual characteristics in the Sons of Mary that were identical to the LC's. Indeed in the mid 80s, the Sons of Mary were the only religious with which the members of the LC's could mingle freely. Their devotion to the Eucharist, to the Blessed Mother and their faithfulness to the Pope were akin to that of the LC's.

At any rate, the Sons of Mary were an international group serving in Italy (in two dioceses) in France, in Canada the United States and Jamaica. Once the group went "off the deep end" a group of these religious left the Sons of Mary "en bloc" in an act of faith, desiring to continue to serve the Church as priests and brothers and yet maintain what was "salvagable." The trauma they felt was deep. The separation from their institute cut them to the innermost recesses of their being. Yet out of this "death experience" came new life! I am sure that some of you out there would find in them a sympathetic ear. Perhaps some of you would want to join them.

God helped this group of brave men that this ex-LC personally knows. Indeed the Bishop of Mandeville for a few years before these sad events concerning the Sons of Mary took place was nurturing the idea to found a Society dedicated to Mission for Life in the Caribbean. When the tragic events affected this group, he decided to go ahead with this dream and found a Mission Society. He "seized the day" and he asked these ex Sons of Mary if they wanted to engage themselves in forming a new group. After prayer and discernment, these first few members agreed to the Bishops' proposition. The Bishop then officially founded the Society and gave the Society its statutes. The first elected Superior was the very Rev. Monsignor Michael Palud who is presently the Vicar General of the Diocese of Mandeville. He is also the official translator of the Bishop's Conference of the Antilles Region. He can be reached at They have a website:

Later, after the Foundation, other members joined. Most of the members of this society are tri-lingual and speak English, French and Italian. A number of them also speak Spanish and Portuguese. The Society runs a secondary school, a home for abandoned children, a retreat house and a number of parishes. A few months ago, Cardinal Dias of the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples wrote to another Archbishop in the Caribbean telling the Most Rev. Robert Rivas, O.P. archbishop of Castries to look to The Mission Society of Mandeville for help for his Diocese. Just consider...because of the similarities, maybe that could be a solution for some of you out there. Think about it, think about the potential this might create for the good of the Caribbean church ! I have a feeling that you would be received with open arms.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

From a Comment on the Post Below

Anonymous said...
A source within the Legion has confirmed that 23 Legionary Priests are about to separate from the Legion to form a new relgious group. 15 of the Priests are Amercians. Fr. Alvaro [Corcuera] has asked them not to take any action until the Vatican publishes its findings. The Legion is not answering questions on the subject, but one of the 23 priests has leaked the departure of the group.

May 14, 2009 1:44 PM

Algo Mas

"Los Legionarios de Cristo están bajo sospecha papal desde el pasado 31 de marzo. Benedicto XVI ha ordenado "una visita apostólica" -investigación en argot eclesiástico- a este grupo. Su fundador, el mexicano Marcial Maciel, ya muerto, fue sancionado en su día por abusos sexuales repetidos sobre seminaristas. Sin embargo, el juez vicario del Vaticano, Filippo di Giacomo, estima que estas nuevas pesquisas son "algo más" que lo destapado en su día sobre Maciel. "
Published in El Pais de Madrid. Read it here in Spanish.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Don Maciel Corleone

You want him, Legionaries? You can have him!

Cassandra Jones' LC Timeline

Some interesting stuff, starting in 1997. Just read how the supporters have to play the able contortionists as time goes by...

23 February 1997 Berry and Renner’s “Head of Worldwide Catholic Order Accused of History of Abuse” appears in the Hartford Courant. Father Maciel and the Legionaries, represented by Kirkland & Ellis, deny the charges.Mexico City Archbishop Norberto Rivera Carrera defends Maciel as the victim of a conspiracy.

3 March William Donohue writes to the Courant: “To think that any priest would tell some other priest that the pope gave him the thumbs up to have sex with another priest - all for the purpose of relieving the poor fellow of some malady - is the kind of balderdash that wouldn't convince the most unscrupulous editor at any of the weekly tabloids. The wonder is why this newspaper found merit enough to print it.”

8 March 1997 Father Richard John Neuhaus writes: “One cannot help but be greatly impressed by both the discipline and the joy evinced by so many young men who have followed the vision of Father Maciel in surrendering their lives to Christ and His Church. I confidently pray that your apostolate will survive and flourish long after these terrible attacks have been long forgotten.”Deal Hudson in Crisis calls on the Courant to “withdraw its false article and apologize to Father Maciel, the Legionaries of Christ, and faithful Roman Catholics.”

17 October 1998 On behalf of eight accusers of Father Maciel, Jose Barba and Arturo Jurado, represented by Martha Wegan, bring canonical complaint in Rome before Cardinal Ratzinger’s Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith.

20 February 1999 the CDF officially records the complaint as a case in its tribunal.
24 December Wegan informs Jurado that the CDF will not pursue the matter.
26 April 2002 ABC’s 20/20 airs news story about the Maciel case.

30 April William Bennett writes, “The flourishing of the Legionaries is a cause for hope in a time of much darkness. I look forward to continuing my involvement with and support of the Legion of Christ.”

13-14 May New Haven-Hartford ABC airs news story alleging improprieties at Legionary seminaries in New Hampshire and Connecticut.

23 May Mary Ann Glendon writes, “The recent revival of long discredited allegations against Father Maciel would come as a surprise were it not for the fact that the U.S. is currently experiencing a resurgence of anti-Catholicism. One would have thought that Father Neuhaus's meticulous analysis of the evidence in First Things had put the matter to rest once and for all. As one who sat near Father Maciel for several weeks during the Synod for America, I simply cannot reconcile those old stories with the man's radiant holiness.”

24 June George Weigel writes, “If Father Maciel and his charism as a founder are to be judged by the fruits of his work, those fruits are most impressive indeed."

15 October The Diocese of Columbus withdraws endorsement and support from Regnum Christi and forbids Legionary priests to be active in any way in the diocese.

December Regain discussion board begins.

24 February 2004 Berry and Renner publish Vows of Silence.

26 November To observe Maciel’s 60th ordination anniversary, the decretum laudis is granted the Regnum Christi statutes and pope John Paul II gives the Legion care of the Notre Dame Center in Jerusalem.

December St. Paul-Minneapolis Archbishop Harry J. Flynn informs parishes that the Legionaries are "not to be active in any way in the archdiocese."

December Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith prefect Cardinal Josef Ratzinger reopens investigation of Maciel under Msgr. Charles Scicluna.

January 2005 Father Maciel declines reelection as Congregation’s General Director. Rev. Álvaro Corcuera is elected to succeed him.

20 May [sic] Legionaries release an unsigned fax from the Vatican Secretariat of State apparently informing Director General Corcuera that “at this time there is no canonical process underway regarding [Father Maciel] nor will one be initiated.” The National Catholic Register announces the exoneration of Maciel.

19 May 2006 Vatican publishes a press Communiqué stating, “After having attentively studied the results of the investigation, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, under the guidance of the new prefect, Cardinal William Joseph Levada, decided - bearing in mind Fr. Maciel's advanced age and his delicate health - to forgo a canonical hearing and to invite the father to a reserved life of penitence and prayer, relinquishing any form of public ministry. The Holy Father approved these decisions. Independently of the person of the Founder, the worthy apostolate of the Legionaries of Christ and of the Association 'Regnum Christi' is gratefully recognized.”According to Zenit, “Father Maciel, with the spirit of obedience to the Church that has always characterized him, has accepted this communiqué with faith, complete serenity and tranquility of conscience, knowing that it is a new cross that God, the Father of Mercy, has allowed him to suffer and that will obtain many graces for the Legion of Christ and the Regnum Christi Movement.”Father Neuhaus writes in First Things, “Since there was no canonical hearing, there is no canonical judgment regarding his guilt or innocence... It should be noted that “penitence” in this connection does not connote punishment for wrongdoing.” Mexico City Archbishop Cardinal Rivera Carrera supports this interpretation.

30 April 2007 Beirne, Maynard & Parson representing the Legion sends cease and desist letter to Regain.

July 2007 Cardinal Franc Rodé, prefect of the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life, tells Regnum Christi members in Atlanta: “To assimilate and get a deeper grasp of your Movement’s particular charism, apply what the Church tells the religious: the Founder’s interpretation of the charism is the authentic interpretation. So read, meditate on, and absorb the words of the man God chose to transmit this spirit to you: your Founder, Father Maciel. This is the most effective way that God imprints your Movement’s charism in your conscience, your heart, and your action.”

22 August Legion sues Regain in Virginia court for theft of proprietary documents.

2007 Pope Benedict does away with the private fourth Legionary vow never to speak ill of a superior and to report those who do.

30 January 2008 Father Maciel dies (reportedly) in Houston and is buried privately in Cotija February 2.

21 March 2008 Good Friday Regain discussion board comes to an end.

2008 Baltimore Archbishop Edwin O’Brien, recognizing coercive spirituality, aversion to transparency, and “heavily persuasive methods on young people,” decides to ban the Legion from Baltimore, but is talked out of it by three Vatican cardinals.

3 February 2009 New York Times reports that Father Maciel “fathered a daughter just as he and his thriving conservative order were winning the acclaim of Pope John Paul II.”

4 February Director General Corcuera writes to Regnum Christi, “I am grateful to [Father Maciel] for being the instrument God used to give my entire life meaning… it would be impossible to find enough words to thank him."

5 February Germain Grisez calls for an “orderly termination of the existing Institute, election of a small group to serve as founders of its replacement, and the preparation of an entirely new and reformed body of particular law for the new institute.”

8 February Legionary Father Berg begs “forgiveness for the disastrous response which this crisis has received from our upper LC leadership.” and says, “I am deeply, deeply sorry, and I personally apologize with my heart in my hand to each and every one of you.”

8 February Vatican prefect of religious orders Cardinal Franc Rodé is reported to intend to let the Legionaries work the scandal out for themselves without intervention.9 February George Weigel calls for a “brutally frank analysis of the institutional culture” and a “personal delegate empowered to take over the governance of the Legion of Christ and to conduct the moral and institutional audit required.”

24 February Mardi Gras “Major statement” by Legionaries fails to appear.

25 February Ash Wednesday Baltimore Archbishop O’Brien suspects Father Maciel was “a man with an entrepreneurial genius who, by systematic deception and duplicity, used our faith to manipulate others for his own selfish ends.”

5/6 March Sydney Archbishop Cardinal Pell calls for “an intervention, perhaps a visitation.”

24 March Toronto Archbishop Collins calls for “a massive reordering of the Legionaries.”

31 March Release of Vatican Secretary of State Bertone’s 10 March letter informing Director General Corcuera that Pope Benedict has decided to carry out an Apostolic Visitation of the Legionaries.
*5 May names 4 visitators: Ricardo Watty Urquidi, Bishop of Tepic, Mexico; Charles Joseph Chaput, Archbishop of Denver, Colorado, USA; Giuseppe Versaldi, Bishop of Alessandria, Italy; Gianfranco Ghirlanda, S.J., Rector of the Pontifical Gregorian University, Rome, Italy

*7 May Fr. Thomas Berg announces he is leaving the Legion of Christ and taking the Westchester Institute with him.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Wikipedia has its own specific article on the mess

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

"The sexual abuse scandal in the Legion of Christ is a major chapter in the series of Catholic sex abouse cases in various Western jurisdictions"

Friday, May 8, 2009

King David. NOT.

The Wanderer Press
Of Canons & Culture . . . Praising With Faint Damns

While I was speaking to a friend with the Legion of Christ/ Regnum Christi ( LC/ RC) movement the other day, he asked me whether there was any hope for the LC/ RC now that its founder had been exposed as a fraud. Humanly speaking, I believe the answer to be no. The LC/ RC might have survived Fr. Maciel’s duplicity, including the strong probability that he was a sexual predator, but the movement’s subsequent public response has raised several new questions about future viability. Of particular concern are the lack of public apology to Fr. Maciel’s victims and the movement’s failure to distance itself from his influence as founder.

As noted by popular Catholic blogger Diogenes, “LC leadership persists in allotting Maciel a role of (somewhat tarnished) honor: praising him with faint damns, and suggesting that his spiritual patrimony remains valuable in spite of his personal life. This won’t work.”The pseudonymous Fr. Damien Karras, a priest who has spent several decades with the LC, agrees. In fact, Fr. Karras was even more terse in his observations. “Your lack of credibility — not Fr. Maciel’s past sins — will eventually buckle and break the Legion,” he wrote LC superiors in an open blog.

So serious is the situation that the Holy Father has ordered an apostolic visitation of the Legion. This is a fancy way of saying Pope Benedict wants a thorough, top to bottom investigation by a team of outside experts. Such a step is normally reserved for crises that have spun out of the control of the host institution.

However, the LC/ RC is reportedly presenting the visitation as proof of Rome’s seal of approval. Several RC contacts have forwarded me an e-mail they claim to have received from leaders within the movement, which states as follows: “Various Cardinals in the Roman Curia and elsewhere have shown the support that the Holy See has for us in this great vocation to the Movement that God has given us. The Church very much knows the great gift that we have, and she very much is encouraging us to transmit this gift to the Church and to the souls that are entrusted to our care.“To further show its support, the Holy Father has decided to order an apostolic visitation of the Legion to help us to move forward vigorously. The Holy See wants to show its trust in us and offer us a chance to show the authenticity of the gift that we have to the Church.”

Or, to quote Mark Shea, “More Legion happy talk!”

Regardless, it appears the Legion is trying to present a face of business as usual. This was apparent to many from the Legion’s recent attempt to acquire Southern Catholic College — a coeducational residential college near Atanta.

“The Legion of Christ and Southern Catholic College (SCC) have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) that could make possible the college becoming a Legion institution,” states the Legion’s April 20 news release.

Speaking as a Catholic layman, and the father of several children, I would feel a lot more comfortable with the LC/ RC and its “gifts” to the Church (not to mention potential oversight of a Catholic college) if the movement’s leadership would demonstrate a more penitential spirit.

Many of the movement’s apologists, on the Internet and elsewhere, have compared Fr. Maciel to King David, noting that God built His Kingdom through an adulterer and murderer. Yet King David did not deny his sins when confronted by the prophet Nathan. Nor did he attempt to discredit Nathan or enlist the help of good men to conceal his sins. Fr. Maciel did. Rather, King David repented, in public, begging God to punish him rather than his nation.

This is unlike the LC/ RC founder who went to his death publicly asserting his innocence, blasphemously claiming to suffer persecution like the crucified Christ, and who allowed his followers to sacrifice their reputation for his sexual vices. Thus instead of an apologia for its founder, the movement should focus on a public apology to its founder’s victims, with a second apology to Catholics for the embarrassment this has caused the Church — in particular to the legacy of Pope John Paul II.As Diogenes concludes with such eloquence: “What is required is an unambiguous admission that Maciel deceitfully made use of holy things and holy words in order to dupe honest and pious persons into taking false positions — sometimes slandering others in the process — in order to reinforce the legend of his own sanctity. Since Maciel’s treachery was sacrilegious in its means and in its effect, he should posthumously be repudiated as a model of priesthood and of Christian life.”

© Copyright 2009 The Wanderer Press

Family! (ah)

Speech Bubble:
"The World Family Conference... is that to celebrate the fact that Fr. Maciel had several?"

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Fr. Thomas Berg’s Statement on Leaving the Legion of Christ

May 7, 2009

After nearly 23 years of life as a Legionary of Christ, I have discerned that it is time for me to continue following Christ in the diocesan priesthood. Although the recent revelations about the Legion’s founder, Fr. Marcial Maciel, were profoundly disturbing, my decision has actually been in the making for nearly three years.

Like so many, I have personally experienced again and again the vast amount of good which God has accomplished through Legionary priests and the congregation’s works of apostolate over the past six decades of its existence. I leave with a heart grateful to Christ who I know accepted and blessed the oblation of my years of religious consecration in the Legion.

In my opinion, the serious issues within the congregation will require its thorough reformation if not a complete re-foundation. I am hopeful that the upcoming Apostolic Visitation of the Legion will be a first step toward a new beginning for the Legionaries and members of Regnum Christi. I trust that God in his providence will lead them to holiness and enable them to do great things for Christ and his Church. For my part, I remain their friend and brother in the Lord.

My work as executive director of the Westchester Institute will continue under the direction of a new Board and no longer under the Legion’s sponsorship. By this means and through a very active ministry in the Archdiocese of New York, under our new Archbishop Timothy Dolan, I look forward to continuing to live my total consecration to Christ in his priesthood.

My hope is that this brief statement would preclude unnecessary and unwarranted speculation about the reasons for my decision. Having released it to the press, I do not plan to make any further comment on the matter at this time.

Statement Source.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009


Clockwise from top left:
Ricardo Watty Urquidi, Bishop of Tepic, Mexico
Charles Joseph Chaput, Archbishop of Denver, Colorado, USA
Giuseppe Versaldi, Bishop of Alessandria, Italy
Gianfranco Ghirlanda, S.J., Rector of the Pontifical Gregorian University, Rome, Italy

Visitators named for the Legion of Christ (no question mark now)

These were some of the names Exlcblogger had heard, but the Jesuit, Fr. Ghirlanda, was a surprise. Watty Urquidi is bishop of Tepic. Exlcblogger had heard it would be the archbishop of Guadalajara.

VATICANO/ Nominati gli ispettori per i legionari di Cristo
martedì 5 maggio 2009

Saranno tre vescovi e un sacerdote a guidare l'ispezione ordinata da papa Benedetto XVI sulle istituzioni legate all'ordine dei Legionari di Cristo, dopo le accuse al fondatore Marcial Maciel di abusi sessuali e relazioni illecite, dalle quali sarebbe nata anche una figlia. Lo riferisce l'agenzia messicana Notimex citando «fonti confidenziali».

Della commissione faranno parte i vescovi Ricardo Watty Urquidi, messicano, Charles Joseph Chaput, arcivescovo di Denver, negli Stati Uniti, e l'italiano Giuseppe Versaldi, vescovo di Alessandria. Con loro, anche il sacerdote gesuita Gianfranco Ghirlanda, rettore della Pontificia università gregoriana di Roma, incaricato delle indagini negli istituti educativi dei Legionari. Potrebbe poi aggiungersi in un secondo momento un incaricato per il sud America.

Nei prossimi mesi la «visita apostolica» toccherà tutte le comunità della Legione nel mondo e si concluderà con la consegna di un rapporto, protetto dal segreto pontificio, alle autorità vaticane.

Exlcblogger has heard that some are saying that the church not will announce publicly the names of the people who covered for Maciel. This would be for the "good of the church".

What the HELL does that mean? Enablers of crimes against children get a free pass for the good of the church? Total BULLSHIT! And total diabolic criminality.

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