Monday, February 9, 2009

Fr. Maciel Monday Update

There is a lot of information on the Fr. Maciel scandal on the internet right now. As I have already done, I point you to American Papist, who has the most complete coverage, and to Ed Peters blog, which has (in my opinion only) the most compelling conversation starters.

The Catholic News Agency says the Vatican is not thinking about any immediate action.
George Weigel calls for some radical changes to the Legion and is very critical. His comments include:

Two courageous Legionary priests, Fr. Thomas Berg and Fr. Richard Gill, have issued personal statements that face the facts as we know them, while not shying away from their implications in respect of any assessment of Fr. Maciel. Another Legionary priest, Fr. Thomas Williams, manfully confronted the truth of this wickedness on EWTN this past Friday night. Fathers Berg, Gill, and Williams have also conceded, admirably, their own failures to see through the web of deceit spun by Fr. Maciel. Their words reconfirm what those of us who have benefitted from the friendship of Legionary priests have known for years—there is great good here, as there is among the faithful members of Regnum Christi.

The question now is, how shall that good be saved?

It can only be saved if there is full, public disclosure of Fr. Maciel’s perfidies and if there is a root-and-branch examination of possible complicity in those perfidies within the Legion of Christ. That examination must be combined with a brutally frank analysis of the institutional culture in which those perfidies and that complicity unfolded. Only after that kind of moral and institutional audit has been conducted, and has been seen publicly to be a clean audit, can the Legion of Christ, and the broader Church, face the questions of the Legion’s future—which are, candidly, open questions:

• Can the good that has come from the Legion of Christ and Regnum Christi be disentangled from the person and legacy of Fr. Maciel?

• Can the Legion be reformed from within, after those complicit in the Maciel web of deceit have been dismissed?

• Must the Legion be dissolved, with perhaps a core group of incontestably honest former Legionaries re-forming a religious congregation dedicated to the ideals that have been fouled by Fr. Maciel’s sins and by a manifestly wounded institutional culture?

None of these questions can be thoughtfully or prayerfully answered until there is a full audit.

I recommend a full reading.


tour86rocker said...

I can't decide whether Rome's actions are shrewd or

On the one hand, you WANT such organizations to fix their problems voluntarily. This scandal is new even though Maciel may have perpetrated many others. By not jumping into the fray half-cocked, Rome may be saying: thank you for being forthright, we trust you to continue in this spirit of truthfulness and clean your house, we'll be here if you need us to help.

On the other hand...this is Regnum Christi. Forgive me, but George Weigel calls theirs "an institutionalized culture of defensiveness". Will they ask for the help that they need? They are alleged in some sectors to hold a cult of personality around their founder, capitalizing pronouns such as "Father Founder" and "Nuestro Padre", etc. I pray that Vatican will not wait TOO long for signs of significant renewal.

kr123 said...

The vatican should step in immediately deprogram their ordained priests and reassigm them. Close the apostolic schools and send the rest of the seminarians home to discern their true vocation from the Holy Spirit not that which the Legion told them they had.