See how the farmer waits for the precious fruit of the earth, being patient with it until it receives the early and the late rains. - James 5:7

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Maciel: A master at "systematic deception and duplicity".

A Bishop speaks.
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Retired Archbishop Harry Flynn banned the Legion of Christ from the Archdiocese of St. Paul - Minneapolis several years ago. Some people who considered Flynn a bit too liberal and permissive of dissident groups pretty much blew the story off as another example of persecuting more orthodox Catholics. I'm quite certain the recent revelations concerning the double life led by the Legion's founder, Fr. Maciel, as well as allegations of irregularities associated with the governance and discipline of the order, certainly vindicate Archbishop Flynn's decision today.
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The Legion of Christ stifles the free will of its members.
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Yesterday I noted that Archbishop Edwin O'Brien pretty much echoed Flynn's statements concerning the Legion, albeit daring to go even further:
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Archbishop O’Brien said he has grave concerns that the Legion fosters a “cult of personality” focused on Father Maciel. “While it’s difficult to get a hold of official documents,” Archbishop O’Brien said, “it’s clear that from the first moment a person joins the Legion, efforts seem to be made to program each one and to gain full control of his behavior, of all information he receives, of his thinking and emotions.”
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“It seems to me and many others that this was a man (Maciel) with an entrepreneurial genius who, by systematic deception and duplicity, used our faith to manipulate others for his own selfish ends,” Archbishop O’Brien told The Catholic Review in a telephone interview following his Feb. 20 Rome meeting with Father Alvaro Corcuera, director general of the Legion.
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“Father Maciel deserves our prayers, as every Christian who dies does, that he’ll be forgiven and we leave the final judgment to God as to what his life and death amounted to,” Archbishop O’Brien said. - Source
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I've now changed my mind about the group - not that my opinion matters. I think the Legion should probably be suppressed and reorganized into a new congregation. The Legion attracted a lot of wealthy donors - perhaps by design - so that could be problematic.
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One other note: The archbishop refers to a "cult of personality" surrounding nuestro padre. He makes an interesting observation. We see that today with Obama. We also saw it with John Paul II to some extent. Incidentally, JPII had a very high regard for Maciel. Cardinal Ratzinger did not. It seems to me, as Pope, Benedict XVI is in no danger of being at the center of a cult of personality whatsoever. That is a good thing.
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Photo: Retired Archbishop Harry Flynn.

8 comments:

  1. Cult of personality is also extremely rampant and prominent in Opus Dei (several friends and relatives are members). Many of the same "less-desirable" aspects of formation and member-control are also found in Opus Dei. The big difference, I guess, is that they were able to get their founder cannonized.

    I am never a fan of the Legion or Regnum Christi. Being one who works in ecclesial environs I foudn them to be focused on the wealthy and ones who relished to have "feathers in their hats". Orthodox, yes. Thank God.

    I agree that I believe the Legion should be supressed by the Church and have its general chapter reformulate the members into a new congregation. There are many good hearted men among them. I know for certain that some of the innocent good-hearted men are seeking incardination as secular priests. God bless them. It must be such an unbearable blow for them to have discovered that their "padre" was a scoundrel and a liar.

    May Our Lady take all LC and RC into her heart and help them become what God wants them to be for the good of the Kingdom.

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  2. You don't have a comment option for your Ash Wed post but let me say this....

    IF "good Catholics" prevent "those other ones" from ahses then they would be among the biggest pharisees and hypocrites condemned by Christ.

    WHO are ahses for?? What do they symbolize?? They are for people like ME...non-canonizable Catholics who want to be better and constantly encounter our human wounds and weakness.

    If ashes are NOT for us sinners...then WHO the hell are they for?

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  3. David - thanks - as for the Lgion - good comments - I have met a few men from the legion as well - they seem to be excellent priests.

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  4. I know I questioned Archbishop Flynn's decision. I'm chalking this up as another fine example of how much I don't know and that I need to trust our Shepherds more.

    Thank you, God, for the lesson.

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  5. Cath - As if I never mistrusted Archbishop Flynn. LOL! We learn as we go.

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  6. Y'know I don't know any Legionairs or Regnum Christies but some of the criticism of them seems so over the top that it comes off as jealousy. And I keep hearing that they only care about well to do people but no one ever gives a concret example of what they mean when they say that

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  7. Dymphna - Really? It is out there - I wrote about it on AR2 - now lost in cyberspace. Search the internet - shit - there is tons of stuff - check out Regain network and so on. It is a sick congregation.

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  8. I have MANY examples but we woujld need a separate blog just to write about them. One that comes to mind happened about 10 years ago. A priest buddy of mine went as part of a missionary order to serve the extremely poor in Tijuana, working his clerical ass off sunrise to sunset but happy and not a whiner (thats MY contribution to the friendship LOL) anyways...they needed many more priests so the Legion was contacted. They refused UNLESS they were given an academy for the few but influential wealthy as their work. I have encountered Regnum Christi and as someine in eccclesial circles I was asked by their team for the names of wealthy influential married couples in my region of the diocese. They held a meeting with all kind sof people in attendance (about some work then wanted to do) and invited back only those at the meeting who were in the upper classes so to speak. These are scenarios I have heard repeated UMPTEEN times arounf this country and in Rome. But you know, I wouldnt disregard jealousy's role in some of this either. We ARE all human and sinners after all.

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