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Whoever says that the Legion numbers don't mean a thing are wrong. Rode' told Alvaro in 2007 at the Atlanta convention that the Legion must grow. He would kill Alvaro if they didnt. Idle threat perhaps, but those numbers meant something to Rode' and the Legion is lies to this day about the numbers of priests and members.

I pray for Cardinals who can be boldly honest, even when the truth reflects poorly on the Church (or on oneself) This is how the Church will be cleansed of the filth - by calling filth filth and acting on it to bring it to an end. No passing of the buck, no disingenuous claims to have no authority to act.

Well- I can say I knew all along that he knew by Nov. 2004. There in Rome, Rode showed he knew everything as he presented MM with the fully approved statutes of RC, (which were not the statutes 3GF were living by). I stated a year or two before this admission that Rode looked at MM with coldness and refused MM's fraternal embrace.

Today, looking back, we ask, as he put those statutes in MM's hands what did he think he was doing? How could a Vatican congregation- the one that is supposed to know, at least nominally, the realities they approve, not have a clue about the internal working and nature of the 3GF/M? Was it that hard to note within the public eye that they were living a reality far beyond what he approved?

Cardinal Rode knew by 2004 of MMs perversion. It was rather Cardinal Pell- upon hearing the news in 2009- all the way from Australia- and not Rode- who sounded the alarm that a perverted founder no doubt would have left 'effects' in the structures he created. Rode did nothing, said nothing, investigated nothing- and he did this to keep young men and women naive and committing themselves to a reality that posed any number of dangers to their souls.

Similar issues could be traced back to other prefects like Cardinal Pironio and others who let the LC live outside the canonical norms for confessors and spiritual directors.

Just as then, still today, these Curial Official have yet to really due their due diligence. They merely mouthed talking points about the goodness of the Legion created from the smoke and mirrors of MM's show.

While we look forward to a 'reformer' Pope elected in the next conclave, no place stands the need for a total overhaul more than the Congregation for Religious.

AnonObserv -- Archibishop Tobin has this to say in my diocesan paper:

I wonder if the Italy-focus helped Maciel to game the system. If he could produce well-groomed, enthusiastic seminarians and nice parties in Rome, maybe no one looked very closely at the abuse and destruction going on, especially since so much of it was concentrated in the Western Hemisphere......

Of course, again, part of the problem is that nutty orders are never supposed to advance to the international level. Their local bishops are supposed to step in (like in the case of the IOL.) I wonder if the Legion's issues will encourage bishops to examine new orders more closely. (I've noticed that, these days, when I run into a 'newer' religious congregation, they're usually a new iteration of an old older. So, those Kolbe sisters who keep popping up everywhere are Franciscans, and there are all these groups of Dominicans and Benedictines and Carmelites running around.

Not that there will ever be a point of 'no new spiritualities will occur,' but, it seems like the non-power-mad founders 1. see a task that needs doing and 2. find an existing rule in the Church that they can live under or tweak slightly to reach their goals....

Actually, looking at these newer orders (and the stories of sainted founders) there always seems to be a concrete need they want to address. Hmmm...

(thinking out loud today...)

Great article Deirdre-
Tobin is on to something, but I do not know if it always come down to the Italian vs the rest of the world, or the European vs the American mindset, but it was not always that way. The Crisis to which I refer is to what extent the Church and with it the Holy See willing to enforce the high standards of sacred roles and institutions.

Forgive me if this is painting with a broad brush- but looking at the trends: What we are witnessing today are the now somewhat newly-converted American bishops demanding accountability and intolerance of a wayward clergy and the Italian and Vatican curia (Sodano-Ghirlanda) accusing the Americans of being puritianical and cracking under the pressure of the American anti-Catholic media. We have Rome who only acts when media pressure mounts and public outrage results.

The net result is that we have ended up with civil courts, egged on by the Press in the United States and elsewhere, enforcing higher standards of protection against a sinful and neglectful clergy than the Holy See itself. The state now brings accountability where the ecclesiastical world has brought only evasion and excuses. Again this needs to be nuanced considerably, but I think you can see the inherent danger that is on the horizon in the arenas where this is playing out. Failure to renew and set tough standards, only invites a deeper invasion of the state into the domain of the Church and weakening of the sign of credibility she must be to the world.

Consider the heavy judgment weighed on the Piarists when the order was supressed by the Pope for cases of pedophilia among some high ranking superiors of the order who were not the founder. Now that's a standard, and it comes from what religious life is in itself. How much more should this be for a witness of a founder who abuses his own and plays games with the approval processes, and systematically deceives members about it all. All of religious life has taken serious hit if this is what now passes for approval of an institute of Christian perfection.

We have lay theologians and professors now asking questions that embarrasingly enough that other Bishops should be asking collegially of the Holy See: e.g. in what way is the LC even a work of God? How is it that DePaolis is given the right to shame and alienate/invalidate those who wish to depart the 3GF/LC.. and you can add to the list.. Why do we still not know what the charism is, if one were to exist?

The bottom line is that, without becoming a witchhunt, The Church in this moment- as it has in others- needs to admit its failure to defend and enforce the high standards proper to those who hold sacred authority and roles- and find the courage and fortitude to pull out the rod that Christ gave every shepherd for this purpose.

I hope that the new Pope retires Cardinal DePaolis to do something he is capable of doing.
There should not be cult groups in the Church. They are only serving themselves and throwing a few crumbs to the Church, while they grab up a lot of the resources and people that could have done something useful for God.

in 2010 Rode' was was still protecting the Millionaires of Christ by blocking diocesan efforts to squelch legion corruption.

in what way is this pervert protector vested?

Bannon made the call, no doubt.

Archbishop Tobin may look more clearly at Rome than he does his own backyard. He attends many Overbrook events and in my years there seemed very connected to both the 3fg's and LC's...

He needs reform right here in Rhode Island - I hope he is able to see the truth and act boldly.

@feeling guilty: different Tobin

“is a reasonable priority to have, not so much to avoid scandals, but to provide for a government that will help the Holy Father exercise his Petrine service.”


“What I was able to do as a non-Italian was to encourage them to think beyond the [Italian] peninsula,”

“reasonable priority”--> the understatement of the day.

“ not so much to avoid scandals”-->these guys still don’t get it. Yes priority number one is to avoid blatant criminality, starting against the most vulnerable: the children and the elderly. THEN govern. In fact, if you fix the first, perhaps good governance will follow.

“Italian”-->sure, blame others. Like no American was involve in the LCRC cover up, Like SP2’s., Dziwisz, Rode, Navarro Valls, etc.. etc.. nationalities made a huge difference. Like the UN’s administration is the perfect example of good governance. It’s the intent at the heart of those that govern that counts. But no, according to Tobin, the fault lies elsewhere. Based on what Tobin just said, its sounds like he drank too much dysfunctional curia cool aid during his short stint.

Deidre, those are abstracts of case studies to be presented at the up coming ICSA meeting in Italy. Unfortunately traditional looking cloisters are not immune to going bonkers.

This is why there needs to be a government, not that “avoids scandal” by brushing things under the rug, but that “avoids scandal” by honestly making sure all is in place to prevent this from happening in the first place. There is probably 2000 years worth of case studies in the Vatican vaults. Look at them. Make sure Canon laws, local trial periods, bishop vetting system are in place to avoid these disasters. And especially review all those that clawed too quickly their way into the curia, and there are several in the recent past.

The first object of founding fathers was not to develop good governance, it was to prevent tyranny, the total opposite of what Tobin said.

To start with, it means using honestly words. According to the New Testament, to be “shameless”, simply means to be without sin (no sin, thus no shame). It does not mean to sin, but have no remorse. Unfortunately, that second definition of “shameless”, is the one that is all too often present in the hearts of men (and women) these days.

Evil will try to use every possible crack, and especially in the Church. Like Gems and Giselle so eloquently said before, we are the Church, and making sure that this does not happen, starts with us, in our own back yards, our families, the rest follows…

Sorry for the rambling!

Tom--- are there any instances of communties following a tried and true rule and established spirituality going off the deep end?

I mean, aside from Franciscans... they've been carefully balanced on the line between crazy and sane since.... the spiritual Franciscans, at least...

I mean, sure, a group can have habits and chant nicely and still be a cult. But can they follow the rule of a saint and still devolve into culti-ness?

Curialser and curialser!

There were so many venues with which to have brought remedy like what you suggest in 2004, and in 1956, and now in 2012, but it has come down to Cardinals protecting their narrow interests and alliances instead of doing their job. Until this changes, good solutions will not be forthcoming.

Consider how the LC visitation ended- in a hurried state with no review of the apostolic schools, and the 3GF were only an afterthought of the process. Clearly their communique was just scratching the surface of the issues, but DePaolis comes in to shockingly defend the status quo- projecting denial about many of the conclusions of the Visitation. What was amazing was his adversarial role to those who left the LC/RC or wanted change, i.e. taking them to task for being the protagonists of injustice and disloyalty to the Church.

Today I have it from others that DePaolis continues to defend that a perverted history of foundation and a perverted founder has no bearing on vocational discernment of a charism, in choosing to stay with the order or not. We have rather Rode telling LC/RC in 2007 as cited above:

" the Founder's interpretation is the interpretation of an authentic charism. So, read, meditate and assimilate the words of the one whom God chose to convey to this spirit, your Founder, Fr Maciel. It is the preferred means through which God imprints the charism of Regnum Christi in your consciousness, in your heart and in your actions."

So, it seems, we cannot make headway until these princes of the Church stop acting like clowns in a comedy and become true shepherds of the flock- ready to die for the truths they profess. The HS is going to give them all a good beating in the coming days, months and years until they get in line. Whether through the next Pope or otherwise, it is going to happen. This I firmly believe.

"can they follow the rule of a saint and still devolve into culti-ness?


They're not truly following it by that time are they? But yes the tried and true rules are the preventive, the corrective, and the cure. No real charism means travelling without compass, seat belts, or a first aid kit.

Chesterton (the rules of Francis and Dominic bring him to mind) would frame this all very personally. The efficiency expert and promoter can design something that seems to work for a generation but without any life inside it. The saint with a humanity steeped in the Holy Spirit can balance all of the contraries and leave a whole that men and women can truly live that survives everything the generations bring to it.

The Legion likes to set its course as though it were the Barque of Peter. But a plague ship like the Legion is better served by rules of quarantine, reparation, and healing.

I think a clean up operation of sorts has happened with Rode - I remember many photographs of him online at those celibrations, including several with Maciel and both looking very chummy - these pics have disappeared unless I simply cant find them. I have one printed out but I cannot find it online anymore - there is no doubting the friendship implied in their closeness.

I am also vaguely aware of evidence of money or gifts from the legion to this cardinal. I cannot find the source for that too, beyond one news article stating that the legion funded a vacation he had in Cancun. Is he the Cardinal whose office was refurbished by the Legion? Did they supply his car? Am I getting mixed up?

Just a thought - I know that it is unlikely women will be ordained as priests in the foreseeable future. However, they tend to be more active, often better communicators and stronger in their faith life.
If groups of well chosen, knowledgeable and spiritual lay people could be established as consulting type advisory boards who would publish reports, most of which would be made public, these could serve as a means of providing recommendations to the hierarchy.
The hierarchy would be free to adopt or ignore recommendations but the local bishops would be held accountable to some extent to the people in their dioceses for their actions when things go wrong.
Similarly there could be a council of lay advisers for the Vatican.
It seems that with the present arrangement, there is no accountability to the people whose lives are affected by bad decisions and to those who provide all the money.
The way it is now, I am aware that my daughter and hundreds like her have been enslaved, taken advantage of, unpaid, cheated and lied to with a cardinal running the show and I am helpless to obtain any kind of justice.
I wrote two letters to the Vatican a few years ago and I received two responses from Rode, thumbing his nose at me.

Well Aaron, Rode did say he took no CASH gifts and left it at that.

"While my answers were legally accurate, I did not volunteer information . . . "
- Bill Clinton

I'm with AnonObserv---I do believe that in the end these wrongs will be righted, one way or another (and perhaps in very unexpected ways indeed), by the Holy Spirit. I'm just not holding my breath expecting to see it happen in my lifetime.

In the meantime, I will continue to focus on the thriving Church on the ground and will keep trying to make my children understand this is what really matters.

The institutional Church certainly hasn't done parents any favors with the current clown show.

There's no surprise in this at all. I saw in Rome the dozens of Christmas baskets we prepared for the Curia- Veuve Cliquot and Jamon from Spain, scottish salmon, pates, each one cost at least $500. When the bishops came for a meeting at the house in 1997 Maciel gave them each a gold pectoral cross worth $800- and that's $800 16 years ago. Maciel always bought the loyalty of the Cardinals- especially the oens from cultures where bribes and irregularities are accepted: Mexico, Italy, South America- and no offense by this statement. The anglo, Germans, etc couldn't be bought as easily. So he found other ways: youth missions in the summer, sending LC seminarians there to work for weeks on end in Cologne, London, throughout Belgium and France and especially the USA and Canada.

Rode is just one of the many, many Cardinals who was DUPPED. But now, to save himself from sheer embarrassment, he lies and says he was never part of the scandal.

It's like the press and Obama. They are never going to admit they bought his BS- so they just cover, cover, cover and rather than any of them saying "I was wrong- this guy is a joke".

Waiting for a Cardinal to admit he is wrong... good luck with that. Rode, and all of them, has already stood in front of the mirror wearing a white beannie hat practicing his papal blessing.

Cardinals aren't wrong. Ever. How do you guys not know this?

(PS- sorry if this sounds anti-clerical. But after my experiences, it seems that lay groups like We Are Church and Catholic for Abortion are not NEARLY as bad as our beloved clerics. For every good one there are 50 not worth their weight in spit)

Some of the more interesting and enlightening discussion on the upcoming papal election:

In my opinion, the question mark in the title for this thread is unnecessary.

Within this article is a link to a published article by a Polish priest that explains a lot, including what went on with Maciel and encouragement for us to be part of the solution in exposing these issues.

Off topic on a slow news day while I play on the Internet instead of doing housework. So many news stories about MM talk about his 2 families - the Normas and the Mexican sons. Why are the other children never mentioned? Isn't there at least one other son in Europe (I'm thinking Switzerland or England) and wasn't there a daughter too, maybe killed in a car wreck? Just wondering, why is that branch of the MM family never mentioned?

One family (preferred) is Norma and Normita; they live wealthy in Spain, despite Norma came from poor family of Acapulco.

One of the children of the second wife sued the LC. He is the son of MM, but not the other two children. The second wife had three children, one of MM.

Norma, the favorite wife, had only one daughter, having lost several times. She lived in Spain, but weekends traveling to Rome to meet his beloved. In fact, Norma collected the boarding pass because She wanted to break a Guinness record

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