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So THIS is now their charism:

According to Article Four, Legionaries should “bring others to live out their baptismal calling to the full, fostering the spiritual growth, the integral formation and the apostolic outreach of the men and women.”

I'm so relieved to know that it's been settled.

Notice above "the integral formation"? That should have a copyright mark after it. Same old, same old. De-formation. Malformation.

More empty soundbites from their promo brochures. In fact they are the victory of marketing over substance.

Their actions were circular. Promise future actions which generated money and vocations. People get excited and believe their story. They get vocations in formation to give impression said actions were taking place. Ask for more money and vocations. Repeat.

Look what the Legion did in Rye, St. Louis, Los Angeles, etc. After promises, money and vocations, the local Catholic population rejected them because they realized that the Legion wasn't about the goal, but about the means to get there which provided them with endless funds with no accountability. As soon as they burn their bridge in one area (like in San Diego, CA) and getting the boot from an angry bishop they move to another area to repeat the story. Once problems were reported from past actions they write it off as old history, look we are now the new Legion.

What we get with this "charism" is more of the same...more pain, more problems, more abuse, more fraud.

So much for "Tend my sheep" -- I guess we're on our own.

Just read the new constitution. It is an improvement: much shorter, simpler, and more realistic. Mentions that superiors can't oblige their men to reveal their hearts, shortens terms of government, does not allow permanent superiors, says apostolics are not members of the congregation and should be given chances to mix with peers and that they need to be close to their families, talks about fraternal relationships with the local church, etc.
So it is a step in the right direction.
Besides the creepy stuff, there was plenty in the old Constitution that sounded nice but was never applied. Part of that was the fact that the old document was so detailed and long, cooked up by MM in his manic phases, it was impossible to put into practice.
I believe that by cannon law, a congregation has to ask permission of the Holy See to make exceptions to its own constitution. The Legion did not do that until DePaolis took over. Hopefully they don't start cutting corners again.
My attitude about the "charism" remains the same: God did not inspire anything in Maciel, and the LC should never have been founded, or at least suppressed 60 years ago. But today you have a bunch of guys with some good motives, and and God can work with that. Charism by default is OK.
I guess I am happy for friends who are still in the Legion that they have a better document to work from. Maybe eventually they can do something constructive for the Church.
What remains to be seen is whether there is a culture change. I said above that there are a bunch of guys with good intentions: I don't know if all the criteria are straightened out, it is possible for a decent person to get his head screwed up. There are still a quite a few superiors I would not trust.
Time will tell.

Dave Monahan (formerly Another ex-LC) - I agree with your perspective. As they used to say in theology "Petrus locutus est." They are now approved by the Church, the new constitutions seem to reflect the changes that needed to be made, and they have been posted online which is a major step forward.

Trust is a scarce commodity. It takes a long time to develop it and it can be lost in minutes. The task now is for the remnants of the LC is to show they are worthy of trust. Actions will speak louder than words.

I think that it may be unrealistic to expect further major change in the short term. The current generation of Superiors will have to move on and be replaced with fresher faces. I just hope that they let the fresher faces develop and not try to control the process from behind a Macielian curtain.

There is only so much one can reasonably expect in such a major change process granted the misguided formation that all endured - mostly without being aware of the deformities - for such a long time.

Meanwhile, their next media crisis will be the sentencing of John O'Reilly on November 11. (I was interviewed by the BBC World Service, and RTE about that... so I expect there will be a lot of coverage).

As you say, time will tell. My sentiments entirely.

I am not so sure I would accord LC harmless fuzzball status.

-There are still some major flaws in the structure. The very fact that there are so few elected positions of governance sustains the cronyism that MM founded. I was speaking to a Redemptorist about this some time ago and he said his order's constitution goes out of its way to make sure the majority of offices of governance both local and central are elected positions. For an order its important to see that it's the charism that unites them, not the authority given to its superiors. This lack of decentralization, i.e. elected provincials with more autonomous provinces, will always prevent and make irrelevant any serious attempt of forming a true charism where it becomes the true unifying force of the group rather than an over mystified all powerful Director General.

-Trust will be hard to gain precisely because the LC could not settle on any form of non-self interested service to the universal Church that would show they came to serve her and not themselves. It will thus be hard to truly break the logic that all roads must lead to vocations and money and prestige. It always shows, and over time it invariably turns clergy and faithful against them.

-Additionally the LC makes this new start with the unshakeable burden of history, and for a religious order, history is the currency for identity and spirituality. This poses an unsettled quandry: pretend the LC starts as an a-historical reality which reduces it to something of an institutional zombie.. or take refuge in the past filled with its dark holes and delusions. For the public it is permanently marked as the group founded by a pervert.. History is for them a non starter in so many ways for every misstep of their future will be tied back to it.

This is important:

Personal Dialogue with the Superior

60 § 1. Religious, powered by faith and love of Jesus Christ, should approach their superiors with confidence, with whom they can open their hearts freely and spontaneously, and thus receive timely accompaniment according to the needs of their stage of life.
§ 2. Superiors are prohibited from inducing members in any way to make manifest their conscience.

No mention is made about how often they are to seek this spiritual direction, oh, pardon me, Personal Dialogue, or if it is truly spontaneous our obligatory. Maybe that's in another section, or other norms published outside the constitutions (manuals, directives, principles and norms).

One of the corrections made by the Congregations of Religious was to abolish frequency in personal dialogue, Fr. John

"Personnal dialogue"
Is that an euphemism to circumvent canon law restrictions over "spiritual direction" for seminarians?
What about 3gs and other lay?
Since they are not part of an ecclesiastic order, does that mean anything goes, including fuzzy boundaries between confession and SD/PD?
It sounds like anyone going into any "personnal dialogue" should beware. It could be just a recruiting/fundraising/information gathering session disguised as "pastoral" care of an unsuspecting sucker.

Yeah you can't trust the legion. Just because it isn't in the constitutions doesn't mean it doesn't exist.

You can stop taking a private vow but instead take an informal private promise.

You can stop going to spiritual direction but instead have dialogue.

The problem with the legion was never printed words, it was manipulation, it was the re-education of what the words really meant to the insiders.

That superiors are prohibited from inducing members to share their conscience does not remove an implication that the member should share it without need for persuasion.

That they are prohibited to do so does not mean that it will not happen. In fact it opens the doors to allow the victim, if you like, to take responsibility for the crime. A very macielistic trait.

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