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    AmP Countdown: Time left to demand that Congress make health care reform pro-life: 2009-11-07 18:00:00 GMT-05:00

    Wednesday, August 12, 2009

    Claim: Legion founder Maciel had multiple children; other details emerging

    For some time, I have refrained from reporting on the ongoing saga of the Legionaries of Christ out of deference for the canonical visitation which is taking place.
    AmP was the first major blog to report the scandal of Maciel having a biological child, and became a hub for accurate reporting on the story in the tumultuous weeks that followed.
    However, because the most recent round of news changes the situation dramatically, I will report on it as well. The conclusions of the apostolic visit cannot be expected for some time, but individuals who are still in the Legion or Regnum Christi deserve to know what is happening now.
    Multiple stories from Mexico report that three additional individuals claiming to be children of Fr. Maciel are suing the Legion of Christ for inheritance rights. It appears the original daughter of Maciel, and her mother, were supported by Legion money (i.e. money contributed by Catholic faithful for supporting Fr. Maciel's work). 

    The mother claims she was a minor when her relationship with Fr. Maciel began. And it appears that "highly placed officials" in the Legion knew of this situation and where complicit in it. Details beyond this are sketchy, but it appears probable now that there are even more children than the ones mentioned (the most frequent number I hear is six total). 
    If you are interested in the details, two ex-LC blogs provide them: Life-after-RC and Ex LC Blog.
    These new allegations suggest several conclusions:
    • Fr. Maciel was an extraordinary, calculating fraud and he ought to be acknowledged as such by the leaders of the Legion and Regnum Christi alike
    • The breadth of Fr. Maciel's crimes makes it nearly impossible that other members of the Legion did not know of them, and they ought to be brought to justice
    • The serious financial infraction of misusing lay resources (money, property, etc) for the upkeep of Fr. Maciel's mistress and his other escapades demands restitution
    • The ongoing revelations about Fr. Maciel and his enablers requires an intense examination, person-by-person, of those still charged with the movement's leadership
    In the face of these conclusions, the choice made by increasing numbers of Legionary and Regnum Christi members - to simply leave the order and begin anew - to my mind, is the most prudent way to respond. Most of these individuals have left quietly, and I have no desire to point them out, but it is happening and I have not yet heard of anyone regretting that decision. Life in the Church, after all, can always be wonderful, even outside a movement.
    For both those who decide to stay in the Legion/Regnum Christi and for those who have left, I would firmly admonish them to assist in every way possible with the ongoing apostolic visitation. 
    There have been some scattered reports of Legion/Regnum Christi members attempting to thwart the visitation (I do not necessarily give credence to these reports), but obviously the primary obedience of any faithful Catholic is to the Holy See and its elected representatives (Christ speaks through His vicar the pope, not Fr. Maciel). For LC/RC in the United States and Canada the representative of the Holy Father is Archbishop Charles Chaput.
    To contact Abp. Chaput, send an email with the subject line "PRIVATE" to "shepherd [at]" (without the brackets and spaces). Emails ought to be VERY SHORT and to the point. Every email will be read eventually.
    For those of us outside the Legion and Regnum Christi, let us continue to pray for all the members, and if we personally know anyone who has been or is a member, let us charitably reach out to them if they welcome it. Oremus pro invicem.
    [photo credit: chamorros1976]

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