Below is an excerpt from a Time Magazine article. I skipped the first part which is basically a rehash of the current facts in the scandal. The rest of the article makes some pertinent points about Vatican motivation and spin strategies designed to leave the Legion more or less intact.
Maciel Scandal Puts Focus on a Secretive Church Order
By Tim Padgett - TIME - Monday, Mar. 08, 2010
By Tim Padgett - TIME - Monday, Mar. 08, 2010
.....This month Benedict is expected to receive the first report of a five-bishop team he sent out last year to investigate the Legion around the world. Sources familiar with the probe say it's meant in part to determine if others in the order besides Maciel have committed sexual abuse, and whether the order's current leadership was aware of Maciel's behavior but covered it up via payoffs to mistresses and abuse victims. Fair said the Legion had no comment in that regard. But Maciel victims like Vaca say Legion bosses such as its general director, the Rev. Alvaro Corcuera, and the Rev. John Devlin, Maciel's private secretary, should step forward with what they knew. (I don't believe we will ever get to the bottom of this story until all the sources of Legion revenue are uncovered. It does not look like that is in the mandate of this investigation.)
Still, victims are keeping their expectations low: the ultra-secretive order that Maciel built, like some shadowy fraternity from a Dan Brown novel, may be simply too powerful to cudgel.
Established in 22 countries, it operates nine universities, 125 religious houses and more than 160 schools. In the U.S. alone it runs 21 élite Catholic prep schools, a university in Sacramento, Calif., and some of the only seminaries for teenage boys in the U.S. at a time when the American priesthood's ranks are thinning exponentially.
In Mexico, the children of telecom billionaire Carlos Slim, one of the world's richest people, have attended its academies. In fact, like its rival conservative organization, Opus Dei, the Legion counts some of the world's wealthiest Catholics among its followers — its lay membership, known as the Regnum Christi, or Kingdom of Christ, has some 70,000 members worldwide — and it is one of the Church's top fundraisers.
Just as important, however, is the thorny issue of John Paul II, who died in 2005 and was succeeded by Benedict. The Vatican had investigated Maciel's personal life as early as the 1950s; but John Paul, whose papacy began in 1978, showered praise on the Legion's founder, calling him "an efficacious guide to youth."
Vaca says that remark is what compelled Maciel victims to tell their stories for the book Vows of Silence, published in 2004. They eventually got the Vatican, even under John Paul, to take their allegations seriously, but Church watchers say Benedict's current mission to canonize his predecessor is another reason Rome won't want to punish the Legion too harshly. "The Legionaries of Christ are going to withstand this [latest] blow," says Elio Masferrer, an expert on the Catholic Church in Latin America at the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM).
Rome, he predicts, "will not take any meaningful action" — just as it hasn't, he argues, in widespread clerical sex abuse cases in Ireland and the U.S., despite Benedict's vow to remove the "filth" of sex abusers from the priesthood.
Analysts like Masferrer do believe, however, that the Maciel scandal, especially in the wake of last week's revelations, is having "a devastating impact" on the Catholic Church in Mexico. The Church is already hemorrhaging congregants to Protestant evangelical sects, and it has seen its clout diminish in areas like the capital, Mexico City, where secular leftists recently passed a law permitting gay marriage. "The politicians can say that the Church officials are in no position to give moral lectures," says Masferrer. (Some members in the Mexican government are calling for an investigation into the Legion, similar to the efforts in Ireland.)
While the Legion's website message last week was sympathetic to Lara and her sons, the order made a point of exposing José Raúl González's private demand earlier this year that the Legion pay him $26 million to keep quiet about his father's sexual abuse. The order insists it did not pay, suggesting that as the motive for the tell-all radio interview. Masferrer says the Legion has also circulated reports that Maciel was surrounded by exorcists in his final days, suggesting that his immoral acts were the work of demons and not the priest. That's a Hail Mary ploy at best. And it does little to obscure the fact that it's up to Benedict now to decide whether Padre Maciel's Legion is itself possessed of enough demons to warrant more severe penance. (Surprise, suprise, surprise.)
It's amazing how when the going gets tough and the deck looks stacked it's time to pull the Devil card. I don't think it really matters whether Maciel was possessed, drug addicted, suffered from multiple personality disorder, or whatever current excuse the Legion has dreamed up. The bottom line is not any of that, it's the Vatican's support for a man they knew was perverted.
It's not about Maciel. It's about the money, favors and gifts Maciel brought with him to the Vatican. It's about every single corrupt official, including cardinals and perhaps a pope, who enabled Maciel in order to keep their access to Maciel's influential donors. It's about some of those donors as well. I doubt very much all those rich folk were completely taken in by a hypocritical narcissistic pedophile. They wanted Maciel's access to the Vatican and were willing to pay for it. At bottom you could say Maciel was not about the devil, he was all about access. Any decent psychologist will state that in pedophilia it's not so much about gender as it is about access. Maciel had the access thing down really really well in all parts of his 'multiple personalities'.
It's not surprising the Legion is publicly spinning away in order to protect their 'access'. I doubt Legion brass really give a fig about any other aspect of Maciel's legacy except his access. That they will protect because that is the Legion's only real charism. And certain Cardinals and bishop visitators will help them keep their charism because they like their access to expensive hams or something.
This whole situation really angers me in case you couldn't tell. I stack this sordid mess up against the LCWR investigation and I get angrier. The message here seems to be you can be as perverted and heretical as you want as long as you provide access to Mammon. Oh, did I just mention the name of a devil?
There's nothing like Mammon to buy influence, to gain access to those who have influence on others who have access to influence. It's a great big Club House for those with Mammon. The Legionnaires of Christ should be called the Legionnaires of Mammon. It seems its entire purpose is to exist as a cash cow for the RCC. I have no doubt the CIA recruits from those who attend their schools.ReplyDelete
While reading this article, Colleen, I also thought about the investigation of the Sisters and the entire way the "investigations" are designed is not to really aide or help the Church or to enlighten anyone. It's a ruse against any really change (which they fear), not for anything for the good, and least of all in the service of Jesus Christ.
It's all about centralizing the Vatican and the Pope's, Cardinal's and Bishop's power so that they can further destroy an individual's right to freedom of conscience, to keep the Church wealthy and with access to the wealthy such as you say Colleen.
It's a big game for the boy's club who use religion, the Church, the sacraments, use even the Holy name of Jesus to rationalize evil acts of predation and perversion, sexual slavery and domination to get their political and very worldly way.
You are so right Colleen - they need to follow the money. They will destroy anyone's ability to follow the money. They already know where the money is coming from, but their job is to destroy the evidence of that money trail and any "exorcisms" will surely just be a cover for their real activity, IMHO.
Word verification is suprowsr which seems to spell superpowers, as in worldly, doesn't it?
I am tempted to wonder if the recent reversal of the "miracle" cure of a nun with Parkinson's (or whatever they're calling it now) is connected to this scandal. Maybe the miracle is the "non-miracle" when it comes to JPII. That does constitute a set-back, I would think, to this fast track sainthood.ReplyDelete
The whole thing is just so sordid. And what does it matter if it was one predatory priest at the top or more? Oh, wait.... if it's "just one" then that's a "local problem" and not systemic I guess - even if two popes helped cover it up!
No one can really destroy anyone's right to freedom of conscience.
Hint: Freedom of conscience = to walk! Exit the $$$-rigged game! Exercise your freedom and walk with Jesus, who I think has left the RC Church hierarchy!
Really well presented and reasoned post! And may I join you in the anger corner? This is getting to be a case of needing someone to go into the "temple" and throw out all the money changers! Money and influence! And cover-ups!
And the internet to blow it all to Kingdom Come!!!
(And as for the "devil connection" - does the order think that will have fooled God at the time of death? And besides... what about free will? Or are they now claiming that clerical abuse is a result of lack of free will?)
I think we're beyond a tipping point here!!!!
Perhaps I should have explained better by what I meant TheraP. I realize no one can do that ultimately, take one's freedom of conscience away, unless one allows it or is too confused to use it, or guilted or shamed, but the RCC does have access to minds & hearts and distorts their thinking to non-thinking when it comes to obedience to the authority of the Church. In that sense, they've destroyed their ability to reason with Christ. They've retarded their spiritual and psychological growth. That gives them time to do their dirty work. Without reasoning with Christ, replacing Christ with dogma and canon law and money and worldly power, what kind of conscience does one end up with? It's no really free, but a prisoner.ReplyDelete
Also, limiting one's ability to exercise liberty, via government laws which would, for example, make laws and policies reflecting absolute rule as opposed to democracy.
Also, the mindset of VI, it seems to me, is that of the RCC hierarchy at present under PBXVI. That is all about being against democracy, freedom of conscience and for rule via the RCC's dictates.
Excellent diary and comments. Chaput's impending whitewash of Maciel's omnisexual affairs is designed to keep the financial tap flowing, while Chaput denies admission to a child raised with same sex parents, and spends CCHD monies meant to help the poor and hungry toward lobbying state governments against civil recognition of same-sex marriages.ReplyDelete
Nothing much left to say. This could be titled, one of the many ways the catholic institution lost contact with spirituality and of many of the People of God! dennisReplyDelete
The Legion & its twin Regnum Christi is effectively a mirror of Opus Dei. With the major difference that it presents itself as being "more visible".....sort of!
Both entities are like an iceberg: you only can see a very tiny part visible. The majority is hidden.
If you watch EWTN everything, group & 'presenter' you see is either a member of Opus Dei, or is running an 'apostolate' approved by the Legion of Christ. For all intent, the two are the same thing.
One problem is that, since so much of the LC/RC membership is secretive, you do not know who is who (or what is connected to what) without a scorecard!
As Butterly correctly indicates: 'follow the $$ trail". Yet that trail is intentionally obfuscated by myriad front corporations, charitable foundations, etc. Making a flow chart would be hard enough, were it not for the fact that they seem to intentionally start & then dissolve corporations & foundations. Or change names, etc.
It is somewhere between cancer cells & ameboae: they replicate like crazy attaching themselves to all & sundry!
The sheer amount of $$ involved boggles the mind. And this investigative team is not exactly objective - as Chaput has ties to the Legion of Christ himself:)
...but then, were you expecting a major money maker to be broken up?
I assent to all you've said, butterfly! (I wasn't really disagreeing, but pointing out that when someone tries to rig the rules, the best option is not to play the game. But yes, unfortunately, too many souls are preyed upon by those whose consciences have become corrupted and who hold themselves out to control the rules - umm, play God.)ReplyDelete
All of this reminds me of the "Family" in DC. And one has to wonder to what degree all of this is interconnected. Diabolical puts it lightly perhaps!
TheraP, you bet it's all innerconnected. Check out the money and people involved with the Institute For Religion and Democracy.ReplyDelete
I'm, too, am afraid that it is "all about the money," colleen. Regnum Christi are incredibly good fundraisers, able to pull together large sums of money very quickly--in a manner that would amaze struggling parish fundraising teams. They come in like knights in shining armor to financially rescue visible projects. Then, suddenly, they're speakers are on parish and seminary speaking agendas. They are very nice to talk with (truly) and seem so wonderful in that mormon sort of way. I saw this firsthand and it was sort of troubling; however, i remained skeptical the whole time and never gave in. Many of the people around me, however, gave in immediately and thought the regnum christis who came to our project's rescue were the best catholics ever. hmmm...ReplyDelete
Thank you, Colleen. I can see the money trail. Connects with the shadowy organizations and funders of Cheney family network of subversive activities.ReplyDelete
Cultlike groups. Whose ultimate aim is a theocratic corporate state. Run by an elite to bamboozle the minions. Yes, I recall now that I dealt with that under "Leo Strauss" and his disciples and all of this. It is a nefarious network of dark designs.
Matt I lived in the Salt Lake City valley for nine years and met many wonderful Mormons. Played a round of golf twice a week with two old gentleman on the quorum of 72. And did this for four or five years.ReplyDelete
When I left for Montana I realized I had made a lot of wonderful aquaintances but no real meaningful friendships. And it wasn't limited to Mormons. I had no real friends amongst liberals, Catholics, gays, golfers, you name it. There's was something about everyone staying on the surface and going through the motions, talking the talk but not really connecting.
I did have some great talks with my quorum buddies, and they probably would have bailed me out if I needed it, but lots and lots of barriers between us prohibited a real connection. Part of it was my fault because I chose not to rock our comfortable boat. In hind sight I regret that.
I understand what you're saying about the RC's. They do a lot of great things and yet, put up some pretty high barriers for which the cost of passage is too high.