I'm highlighting this post again because a reader just pointed to an < interview > with Cardinal dePaolis, which undermines the claim that the Legion's charism is/or has been well-established. I'll ask our Italian-speaking readers to be the judge in this critical question.
The best I can garner from the Google translation is that we are now going to play word games with "charism," "patrimony," and "heritage." Clarification of how he addresses these ideas will be appreciated.
The Legion's spokesman, Fr Benjamin Clariond, was interviewed by La Stampa's Vatican Insider, and included this detail about the charism:
.. every charism explains a mystery of Christ’s life in its own special way and communicates this to the whole Church. We Legionaries and the entire Regnum Christi form part of the mystery of Christ who announces the Kingdom of love, overcoming hatred and sin. So the Christ of life announces his call to people to help Him in the mission. Our charism is the kingship of Christ who calls people to be missionaries. This is why the Legionaries celebrate the Feast of Christ the King on the last Sunday of ordinary time. Devotion to the Sacred Heart is strongly linked to our charism. Christ’s personal experience encourages us to come out of ourselves to proclaim the Kingdom along with all the other baptised faithful.”
Well, this breezy explanation may be news to members of the Movement who for decades thought it was something else (forming leaders, mass media apostolates, etc.). Even in the last five years, we have seen Legionaries not only becoming tongue-tied about the charism, but indicating that they would poll existing members to see what they thought it was.
It is true that "Christ the King" was on the lips of every member -- unfortunately borne of the lie that MM was actually a Christero wounded in defense of the faith while a tender teen -- but that was never offered as the charism per se. And although the name of the Legion was originally related to the Sacred Heart (can actually LC's remind us of that name?) there were no prayers devoted to the Sacred Heart OTHER than the lovely card created by Mrs Gabriella Mee, which was at her own expense and a quirky allowance for her childhood devotion. It was never prayed publically as far as I can tell, and was buried with her in the end.
As for "coming out of ourselves" to promote the Kingdom, it was a common accusation that the only kingdom proclaimed was that of Maciel (and eerily tied to Warner Sallman's image that was proudly displayed in every Movement house). The license which MM took with his own vows, the empire built methodology, the personal devotion he cultivated among members, and the personality cult that kept anyone from undermining his authority speaks more of a kingdom than a congregation, and the very fact that the good of the Legion is promoted at the expense of Holy Mother Church herself makes all Legionary kingdoms suspect in the future.
Don't miss the comment on another thread that reminds us of why this view of "charism" is unworkable:
The signs of a non-charism keep showing and the above text says more than they might wish it to.
1. Cardinal says that the branches cannot function on their own, they cannot be truly separated (even though some token degree of indenpendence is offered.) Why? A charism, if it exists, consists in a certain witness of life which can be transported anywhere by an individual member any small community. It needs no method, system, or corporate structure to come into its own. Here the Cardinal admits failure to fully achieve what canon law require of feminine branches of the same charism, and why? Because there is no charism.
2. The method and the collective now function to replace charism, and to swallow up its members, lost to the whole. [He quotes the comment offered above.]
OK.... What part of A (SINGULAR) Mystery do they not get? 1) Christ the King and the Proclamation of the Kingdom (They just settled on one of the luminous mysteries of the rosary here-strange and little too convenient), then 2)Devotion to the Sacred Heart is tacked on for Good Measure (That is the focus of the Personal Love and Affective Awareness of Divine Mercy of the Lord. 3)So may we presume from this that they are renouncing the milites Christi, the image of Christ in battle with his army.... because now they then say they are missionaries... BUT they still call themselves Legionaries (Remember the macielian neo-fascist motto Heil Christus!) Why are they not calling themselves Missionaries of Christ the King--get rid of Legionaries, get rid of the Sacred Heart devotion, stick to one please !?
Really- just admit that you have no idea what you are, and really dont care, you are rather just focused on your good experiences- no matter its origin or consequences that is all that matters; that is until someone has a bad experience and then such figures are labelled as ill, evil, or mistaken.
The above definition does not even begin to tackle the issue of charism in apostolate. This will sink them in the end, because when a Bishop invites them into a diocese to run a school, he wants them to run a school, not coopt all his local leadership into working for them.