Catholic World News

Complete reorganization planned for Legion of Christ?

December 10, 2013

The Legion of Christ will be completely reorganized when the general chapter of the troubled religious order convenes in January, the Vatican Insider reports.

The Vatican Insider says that the Legion will be split into three separate groups--one for priests, one for consecrated persons, and one for laity—with each group under separate leadership. Although there maybe some collaboration among the branches, they will be autonomous, the report says, based on information from Vatican sources.

Cardinal Velasio de Paolis, who was appointed by Pope Benedict XVI to supervise the reform of the Legion, will chair the meeting of the general chapter, which begins on January 8. The meeting will elect new leaders and approve new constitutions for the order.

The Legion of Christ has been struggling to overcome a crisis that arose when it emerged that the group’s revered founder, the late Father Marcial Maciel, had lived a double life that involved sexual abuse, lavish personal spending, and the fathering of children.

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  • Posted by: hartwood01 - Dec. 10, 2013 10:50 PM ET USA

    How do they get beyond the fact that their founder was a moral degenerate? The answer,of course is,either these priests are brainwashed or they think Maciel was an okay guy.

  • Posted by: - Dec. 10, 2013 10:31 PM ET USA

    The rational conclusion here is to end this: retire the elderly Cardinal in charge of this unfortunate mess, realize that there's no future for an organization which looks to a founder like Maciel, and let the untainted Legionaries join other orders.

  • Posted by: Jim.K - Dec. 10, 2013 7:42 PM ET USA

    Good, it's appropriate and good management. They also ought to change the names of these groups. That may allow them to get on with life without the stigma attached to the various groups. It seems that many current members of each of these groups keep trying to convince us that "they are all good folks" and "there is/was nothing really wrong with the organization." Not so! Get rid of the bad apples and move on!

  • Posted by: MatthewG - Dec. 10, 2013 6:52 PM ET USA

    The author of the article is confused. The Legion of Christ (L.C.) only includes priests and seminarians. The Legion-affiliated Regnum Christi Movement (R.C.) includes consecrated lay people with various degrees of commitment, including complete consecration. Whether or not L.C.'s are also members of R.C. was something that has never been so clear; speaking as a L.C. (on the way out), I can say that I heard both things at different times - that we were or were not another branch of the R.C.