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"If it turns out that anyone culpably cooperated in his misdeeds we will act according to the principles of Christian justice and charity, holding these people responsible for their actions".

"If it turns out...?" That is laughable and pathetic. I believe the above men formed a pact not to rat on the others.

That is exactly the same statement I have trouble with because we know RC 'charity' means 'don't believe the bad you hear' or see and look the other way. There has never been 'justice' for those I know who have been wronged by the Legion because the victim is supposed to accept the wrong done to them as a gift from God to help them grow in virtue. They are not supposed to complain because that is not being docile to the Holy Spirit. Maciel's issues have nothing to do with the warped theology of this group and these letters give a full view of all the Legion tactics of spiritual manipulation. I am so sad for the good RC people who have, in some cases been converted to the Catholic Church through RC and don't know there is a Catholic Church full of Truth outside this cancer disguised as orthodoxy. I am praying extra hard for them today.

Why do they continue to call maciel "our founder?"

Seems like they are still claiming him as their own. Why not distance yourself from him just a little bit and call him "the founder" or "maciel, the person who founded the legion?"

Sorry if this is nitpicky, it just bothers me in the same way that they always called him "our father."

They are toast:

"We later came to know that Fr Maciel had fathered a daughter in the context of a prolonged and stable relationship with a woman"

Still making excuses, as if OK that he had this relationship because it was prolonged and stable (that actually makes it worse!) What about his prolonged relationship with his sons whom he raped!!!! Oh please....

We apologize to ALL the victims? Do you think any of us will receive this letter as an apology? There are many different kinds of victims, but they are blind to the most obvious, never mind the rank and file. The Legion has each of our addresses. How have they reached out to us to say anything by way of an apology. Not one person really reached out with true concern when I left. This letter is filled with vagueness and still they can't admit to full truth of the matter. They still must justify themselves with the "approval" stance. It is pathetic. And they are singing to their choir. It's a joke.

Reading this communique in light of the photos we saw yesterday of the Normas, the "consecrated", the priests and Maciel in 2005, it sounds like a total lie and joke.

"Coming to terms with Maciel's life"? They have had AT LEAST five years according to the photo. How long does it take to get the idea that the man is a fraud?

It will be interesting to see in the end how much and for how long people in the group knew about all of this. Sometimes I wonder if some of those who were in the Legion for years and are now protesting about our negativity might have known more at the time than they really want to have revealed.

"We later came to know that Fr Maciel had fathered a daughter in the context of a prolonged and stable relationship with a woman..."

Legionease uses "we" to mean all members of the Congregation, or some members of the Congregation, or may be any random grouping of the Congregation at any time of their choosing. In this way the leadership shamefully shed all accountability of all in all.

So we know the current leadership knew absolutely by March 2005 (, which was two months after AC became Director General and one year and three months before the Holy See's exile of MM which they willfully interpreted as a victimization of an innocent lamb, hence misleading their own members. Why did they not do their own internal investigation in 2005 of the accusations of seminarian abuse? Since when did a Vatican investigation prohibit an order's own right to investigate in a collaborative manner?

This also contradicts the carefully crafted response given to some rank-and-file that they knew and told the Vatican, but the Vatican told them to cover it up--out of fear.

Go into Google. Type in "Maciel." Then hit the "News" link at the top left of Google.

All those breaking headlines that you see, about the Legion apologizing for Maciel's reprehensible behavior SHOULD HAVE BEEN HEADLINES ONE YEAR AGO!

It's been an entire year, plus some.

Good grief.

I've said it before, and I'll say it again.

This is CLASSIC passive aggressive behavior. Drag your feet, drag your feet, drag your feet, deflect, drag, deflect, drag...make everyone exhausted and tired of waiting. Then give them one smidgen of what you should have given them one year ago. Then everyone will be so relieved that they finally have done one pittance of what they should have done all along and *snap*--just like that--they start to wiggle off the hook.

When really all they did was drag their feet and deflect for a year (well, and attack and accuse and manipulate and destroy), in order to get the upper hand without doing what should be done.

Contact the victims? Nope.
Make excuses for why it isn't done yet? Yup.
While simultaneously lying and saying it was done long ago? Yup.

Make restitution to the victims? Nope.
Hang Maciel's molested kids out to try by calling them blackmailers? Yup.

Call their order to a screeching halt while investigating things internally and seeking to excise all evil? Nope.
Print gobs of promotional mail, host conferences, buy Catholic colleges, put videos on Youtube, whine at anyone who criticizes them? Yup.

Demonstrate care and concern for the souls in their hands by seeking the truth to set them free? Nope.
Insist brazenly that the charism is sound while emotionally and spiritually browbeating the members into following orders like good little soldiers? Yup.

Try to help the Pope out by mucking out their own stalls and making his job easier? Nope.
Equate themselves with Our Lady in her magnificent vocation and suffering? Yup.

Make me sick? YUP.

Hey anonymous (1:02 PM),

We have discussed this before but having your photo taken with someone does not mean much (the discussion was about JPII and Maricel, and we did not fault JPII, saying that he should have KNOWN he was embracing and being photographed with a complete pervert).

You claim that because there is photo of Marciel with the Normas, 3GFs and LCs, one of those 3GFs or LCs present knew who the Normas were AT THE TIME. Nice theory. I respect it, but I can not accept it until it is proven (It would be great if someone can). Even if there was a "something is strange here" thought lurking in the mind of one of those present, can we prove that they voiced those suspicions to an LC in leadership and did not just kept it to themselves (as another commenter so ably stated). Again nice theory, but I am not buying it until I see a little more.

An even farther stretch is saying that because of a photo that some 3GF took as a keepsake and sat for years in some draw, some or all of the upper leadership (the list of names in the communiqué) KNEW who they were. Again nice opinion. But before I accept it I need more facts, not opinions.

But to be fair (and honest) I am really, really open to changing my mind on this one, just help me take the next step...

Maybe someone can begin constructing a timeline (like Cassandra did) to help us put the facts, the later official statements and the opinions from this period (1996-2009) in a chronological order so we can see where the cracks are in the story. I for one forget things too quickly and then begin constructing my opinions on sand.

SS: Just to nuance the same...

Seek to have all the vows and promises of LC declared null by the Holy See on the basis of grave deceit employed by them and the founder? Nope

Seek to stop using self-serving manipulative tactics to keep membership at all have faith like Mary (i.e. really like AC) or ...or what? AC's letter shows business as usual. Be member or join the ranks of spiritual failure

To the above observations as to omissions in this communiqué, I would add: there is also no mention of the financial misdeeds, the inter-regnum scandal when MM got himself back 'in' through under-handed means, MM's drug abuse, the reason why MM got himself kicked out of seminary after seminary, and the reason why MM established the shroud of silence to any critiques. They still show no inkling that they and their methodology are the creation of a malicious 'front' for a needy malignant narcissist. They don't sagely commit to laying off of future vocations until they get their act together (if ever). They pretend to be indignant 'blancas palomitas'.

KP: the implication is that God "called" MM to do all those things because He really, really wanted the Legion to exist. For the good parts, of course.

Reality Check,
The point is though that the burden of proof should be on the LC that they did not know. This is not a court case where one is innocent until proven guilty. It is a public scandal and a case of credibility and credulity – all the circumstantial evidence says they had to know. The virtue of Justice demands that they fall on their swords and tell the truth.

From a comment at exlcblog...

March 26, 2010 2:04 PM

Cretos said...

I'm glad that the Legion is finally openly admitting Maciel's crimes without all the previous reservations.

I still find it rather amazing that they knew about this in 2006 and it took four full years to come clean. If you go back and look at the types of messaging they were giving since 2006, after they knew the truth (or at least about the abuse), then it is rather shocking and pathetic. I would like to see Fr. A apologize for misleading people after he already knew enough to be sickened. That is different from saying that he's sorry for Maciel's actions and for not giving people a true hearing. He knew that Maciel was guilty and he refused to be decent and heroic enough to take a stand.

And this, then, I believe, is the real reason that many do not find the current letter to be very sincere...

Cretos is right, there is still an apology missing - that of AC and the LC upper leadership for THEIR misinformation, for THEIR errors. Whether they were "sincere" or not is for God to judge. But it does not matter. Even if "sincere" at the time, they need to ask pardon.

"our task is to take a step forward, individually and as an institution, to close this chapter of our history and open a new one."

Chapter? Aren't we talking about the whole damn book here?

Thanks Ides,

A different way to look at the situation.

I still disagree about the curcumstantial evidence (via 2005). What we know about Maricel is that he decieved and was good at it. A photo showing some LC's and 3GFs with the Normas does not mean they or the upper LCs knew in 2005 (knowing what we know about MM way of working).

However as Cretos points out, there was more and more evidence each year. No excuses that by MM death in Jan 2008 things were not made clear.

I also agree with you that now the burden of proof is on them to come out with a cronology of what happened when and who knew when.


Ummmmmmmm Anon........ @3:12

Can you be a little more specific in your comments?

Giselle has kindly given us a few guidelines in her commenting policy....

"Commenting anonymously is certainly permitted as long as it adds to the understanding of this topic."

Most everyone who contributes, even when we express strong personal emotions or even the ocasional "hit-and-runners" bring something to the table.

If I am out of line Giselle, I beg your pardon (I realize that I am a guest here)

Compare the letter of today, with Alvaro's supplementary statement to LC and RC members, with what the Legion said in response to Maciel's being disciplined by the Vatican in 2005:

"In reference to the news regarding the conclusion of the investigation of the accusations made against Fr. Marcial Maciel, our beloved father founder, the Congregation of the Legionaries of Christ offer the following statement:

"1. Fr. Marcial Maciel has received during his life a great number of accusations. In the last few years, some of these were presented to the Holy See so that a canonical process would be opened.

"2. Facing the accusations made against him, he declared his innocence and, following the example of Jesus Christ, decided not to defend himself in any way.

"3. Considering his advanced age and his frail health, the Holy See has decided not to begin a canonical process but to 'invite him to a reserved life of prayer and penance, renouncing to any public ministry'.

"4. Fr. Maciel, with the spirit of obedience to the Church that has always characterized him, he has accepted this communique 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.

"5. The Legionaries of Christ and the members of the Regnum Christi, following the example of Fr. Maciel and united to him, accept and will accept always the directives of the Holy See with profound spirit of obedience and faith. We renew our commitment to work with great intensity to live our charism of charity and extend the Kingdom of Christ serving the Church."

How many lies can you count in this statement of 2005? Whether they are Maciel's or the Legion's is immaterial--right in the communique they themselves issued, they declare the founder "beloved" and say they remain "united to" him.

The fact of the matter is, what the Legion declared today regarding the truth of the facts of Maciel's disordered life as well as its acknowledgment that the "CDF reached sufficient moral certainty to impose serious canonical sanctions," should have been their statement in 2005. But it was not.

They were lying then and they are still lying now. So long as no one knew about Maciel's concubines and biological children, there would never surface any tangible proof that any accusations against Maciel could be proven "beyond a reasonable doubt," regardless of the CDF's "moral certainty." But since the proof has emerged, the LC has to go back and acknowledge that what was said about Maciel was, after all, true.

At the same time, they want us to believe that they did not know any of it. That Maciel, using Legionary funds, supported two, three, if not four(remember, children in Mexico, Spain, England, and France) separate families for decades but they were completely blind to it.

Couple that with photos from as late as March of 2005 showing that Legionaries as well as RC consecrated were personally aquainted with Maciel's concubine and child in Spain and you stretch credulity to the breaking point.

It's just what they have been asking us to believe about Maciel: He lied about some things, but not this.

He lied about his living his priestly vows; he lied about his whereabouts for long stretches of time; he lied about his "never having said no to Christ"; he lied to his very concubines and his own children about his true identity; he lied when he told us, at the end of his life, after the Vatican disciplined him about his innocence; he lied continually to us about the original accusations; he lied about and committed slander and calumny against his accusers; he lied to Pope John Paul II about the relationship he had to the children he presented to the pontiff for their first communion; he lied to his monetary benefactors and to his followers in LC and RC about what their hard work and donations were actually funding . . .

Oh--but about being vouchsafed an authentic charism by the Holy Spirit to found the Legionaries of Christ and Regnum Christi?

He told the truth about that. We are absolutely and incontrovertably convinced of that.

Let's flip this on its head: instead of asking the many doubters to "prove" the accu

So far, it's all Words, Words, Words. They have acknowledged that MM abused seminarians and that he had a daughter. The 2 "blood brothers" that have "surfaced" don't sound like they're being officially acknowledged yet.

We will not know how sincere legion is (snickering permitted) until the rubber hits the road. If or when the original victims ask for monetary reparation, we'll see what the reaction is. We do know how legion reacted to Raul's request for money.

Let's flip this on its head: instead of asking the many doubters to "prove" the accusations, why doesn't the Legion offer proof of Maciel's having actually recieved the charism?

In every other case (in terms of congregations or orders), the "proof" of the charism is in the witness of the individual founder's life. In Maciel's case, there is absolutely no example that the apparent charism had any positive effect on his conduct. So, if the "charism" failed to convert Maciel, how can we believe that the constitutions etc. that the charism "inspired" could convert anyone else?

Shut. It. Down.

Giselle (2:20 PM: Exactly. This was the phrase that first struck me: "For his own mysterious reasons, God chose Fr Maciel as an instrument to found the Legion of Christ and Regnum Christi, and we thank God for the good he did." This is the skewed philosophy that you, Deirdre and other blog contributors have been working on the last few weeks. Time to re-read: "On Crooked Lines" and "Legion Speak #2", and today's "Oh, another thing" at
This is what scares me if the Vatican does not shut it all down (RC included): they will overcome MM, see themselves as hurt solely by MM's crude lies (but only the ones the LC leaders are admitting to, ie not the methodology), but good for the world, unable to recognize their essential philosophical,spiritual and psychological deformity.

Well, this statement was obviously issued under duress, it's at least one year too late by even the most generous standards, it omits a number of serious issues such as the financial improprieties, and it includes a few of the same old lies including the howler that all of these revelations came as a total surprise in Feb 2009. These guys are nowhere close to providing the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.

BUT, there are at least two bombs in here that wil further rattle Kool Aid Land:

1. For the first time, the LC is officially acknowledging for the record that Maciel was a pedophile who abused his own seminarians. Not exactly a revelation to the rest of the world, but I think some L/R diehards were hanging on to their implausible deniability of that one.

2. They acknowledge that Maciel's life, despite the "good", is not worthy of emulation and cannot serve as a model. They of course don't address the implications this fact has for their charism, but those implications will be sorted out by the common folk over time and are enormous: there isn't one.

"For the first time, the LC is officially acknowledging for the record that Maciel was a pedophile who abused his own seminarians"

They opted up until now to protect "his memory" from charges they would not dispute. Who thinks the Visitors addressed this in their report?

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