Various people have made comments about how wonderful the Regnum Christi would be if it could be separated from the Legion. Pete Vere made the following suggestion:
I agree that RC is extremely damaged and shadowed by the mind of Maciel, but underneath it all there is something there that attempts to respond to a need in the Church today. The need being a lay formation and action programme that is a "step up" in intensity from Knights of Columbus and Catholic Women's League, but not as intense as Opus Dei or lay disciples of Ignatian Spirituality. This is why some folks like myself see a base charism there that should be salvaged, if possible. That will require stripping away the mind of Maciel from its current expression.
Anyway, that is why I could see RC surviving and thriving, if it were separated from LC, from the 3gf/m, and given new leadership - two recommendations being: 1) diocesan bishops and parish priests; or 2) Jesuits. I know around here, and elsewhere in North America, the Jesuits are going through an orthodox renewal. Most young Jesuits who I know would make excellent spiritual directors for a group like RC.
Feedback began with Maria:
I have been thinking about Pete's suggestion about RC that there may be "a base charism there that could be salvaged, if possible." I was in RC for over three years. Although I consider the women I knew in RC to be sincerely trying to do what is right, I could not trust any of them to handle any type of "lay formation and action programme." With the exception of one woman, neither they, nor their higher-ups in RC, nor the LC priests above them, have ever, in the almost five years since I left, spoken with me about my having left RC, leading me to think that, either they have not changed, or they really don't know how to care about individuals, even ones who have worked with them for years, or both.
The word "deformation" has been used before on this blog. I think that I suffered deformation in RC. I think everybody does. But where has that been acknowledged by RC leaders? They distorted for us the meaning of vocation. They kept us too busy with RC activities, encouraging too much time away from our families (our real vocation). They had all the secretiveness which allowed evil to be covered up for decades. They had us read from the plagiarized materials, heavily emphasizing "Envoy." They were all about efficiency at almost any cost.
How would the mind of Maciel be stripped away from the organization (Pete's words) when the mind of Maciel runs through the smallest details of the organization? Of course, the Holy Spirit can work good in any of us. But why try to salvage such a deformed and deforming organization? And can it really be called a charism, when delivered from the get-go through an evil-doing charlatan? A Charism from our good God? Really? I really, honestly would like an explanation of that from someone who knows Canon Law.
Let's not forget most of RC, of the few who remain, has simply been a retreat society, a social circle and fishing pool for vocations and money for the LC. The members showing true apostolic dynamism are few, and most already had dispositions before coming to the RC. In the end, these overworked types found themselves in systems of work that divided their parishes and weakened home life.
Of the 20+ corporations the LC created for its vast corporate empire, most were names backed by one or two RC members in the LC's employ. All puppets that created an image of monstrous size. For me the question will be how can we ever get to the public an objective understanding of true size and numbers of RC so the exaggerations stop?
There always will be a need to offer additional means of spiritual growth for the laity; the key is to separate those who do this work from the result it obtains such that it truly blossoms solely within the established parochial and diocesan structures. This entails that pastors and bishops are ready to give support to new levels of commitment- without the use of promises or vows, but with spiritual guidance, ongoing formation, and healthy places for families to evangelize other families.
and finally, Mary Ann:
Pete, what you describe is called being a Catholic lay person. We don't need more than a parish and our own initiative. We don't need to be organized and led. We laity do need good catechesis, but fortunately, most of us can read.
What have your recent experiences within the Movement shown concerning authentic renewal?