Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Breaking the Chains of the Past

George Weigel, Distinguished Senior Fellow of Washington’s Ethics and Public Policy Center, proposes an unprecedented course of action to remedy the situation of the the Legionaries of Christ and the affiliated lay movement, Regnum Christi.

The measures he suggests would call for a heroic exercise of the virtues of courage, justice, and prudence. Essentially, Mr. Weigel is suggesting that in order for whatever goodness is found in the Legionaries of Christ and Regnum Christi to find its place in the future, the organization needs to dramatically and unequivocally break the chains of the past. Those chains are theological, psychological, historical and institutional.

The Vatican statement about the Legionaries of Christ, released on May 1 indicates that a Vatican delegate will assume control of the Legion. Mr. Weigel agrees that this delegate will have plenipotentiary powers, "including making recommendations to the pope about the future of the Legion of Christ—about which, it seems, all options remain on the table."

Hence, Mr. Weigel offers a series of suggestions to the Vatican Delegate in order to save whatever good is salvageable in the Congregation. He is advising pretty radical surgery. Granted the seriousness of the situation, in the context of perceived lack of decisive by the Vatican and the Legionaries, my initial reaction to the suggestions is.... they make sense and deserve serious consideration.

This excellent article does the Vatican and the Legionaries a great service. The good priests and seminarians of the Legion are among the victims and are sullied by the sins of the father. I hope they are treated with pastoral care because they and their families must be going through great suffering. I applaud Mr. Weigel for his constructive suggestions and for refraining from engaging in the unnecessary hysteria which so often surrounds the Legionaries, now that the Vatican has spoken.

In the re founding of the Legion, and perhaps too in its approach to the situation in Ireland, the Vatican has a chance to define a new beginning - both of these situations could be "leading indicators" of how the Church can renew herself.

You can read the full article here.

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