With all due respect (from Jim Fair):
I was blessed last week to be in Rome for meetings with other communications directors from territories of the Legion of Christ.
There I was with folks from Italy, Germany, Austria, Mexico, Spain and Chile. And they all were patient with the unilingual American (yours truly) who needed constant translation help.
The week had many highlights, but for me a special moment came Wednesday morning when we had Mass in one of the chapels in the catacombs under St. Peter’s Cathedral. I found myself in the heart of the Vatican, with three Legionaries celebrating a Mass attended by Legionary brothers, consecrated members and plain old Regnum Christi members like me.
Some in the congregation were people I was meeting for the first time; others were long-time friends and professional colleagues. But what struck me was that despite being from different countries and different cultures, we all were members of the Regnum Christi Movement. We were all Roman Catholics with a common spirituality and mission.
We often talk of being part of a spiritual family, something I find difficult to define. But Wednesday morning, in that holy place, I felt very much to be part of the family. And I am deeply grateful for my many brothers and sisters.
I only want to say that if those in charge of communications for the Legion are unable to define their mission, their charism or the nature of the "family" to which they cleave, then there is still a problem. This is not meant to be an insult to the sincere faith of many members, but the same old plea: the Church herself provides the universality, orthodoxy and communion that we cherish -- what exactly is the unique and unparalleled L/R mission that must attach itself to that body despite the baggage and scandal? Why must it endure when the downside is a constant reminder of duplicity and sin?
Today is the grand feast of Saint Dominic, and one site reminds us of his gift to the Church:
The Order of Preachers “is known to have been established, from the beginning, for preaching and the salvation of souls” (Primitive Constitutions). The Fundamental Constitution of the Order of Preachers underscores the priority of this apostolate. The five distinctive elements comprising the uniquely Dominican way of life (the common life, the evangelical counsels, the common celebration of the liturgy, assiduous study, constancy in regular observance) “together prepare and impel us to preach; they give our preaching its character.” By their religious profession, Dominicans become “fully committed to preaching the Word of God in its totality” so that they live “an apostolic life in the full sense of the word, from which preaching and teaching ought to issue from an abundance of contemplation.”
Every Dominican I know (and here surrounding RI's Providence College there are many) embodies this mission, and attaches him/herself to the community for this very reason. They don't conflate their existence with that of the Church, nor do they struggle to explain what drives them.
Prayers continue for the members of the Movement, and perhaps the intercession of Saint Dominic will assist in clarifying what, presently, remains difficult to define.