Thursday, September 16, 2010

Bishops meet at Legionaries of Christ house in Rome

 "Distinctly Catholic," a blog by Michael Sean Winters at the "National Catholic Reporter" published a "post card" on September 13, 2010, from Bishop David M. O’Connell, newly ordained coadjutor bishop of Trenton, New Jersey, about the annual meeting of new bishops, which is currently being held in Rome:

The meeting of the new bishops of the world is taking place these days at the house of formation for the Legionaries of Christ, Regina Apostolorum, on the outskirts of Rome. Well over 100 recently ordained bishops have gathered together from all over the world at the invitation of the Vatican's Congregation for Bishops to study and discuss the roles and responsibilities attached to episcopal service in the Catholic Church. The United States has the largest group in attendance with 25 bishops, two of whom were ordained only within the last week. The meetings will last until September 17.
Beginning with morning prayer and Mass each day at 7:30 am, the bishops are assisted by hundreds of seminarians belonging to the Legion. The facilities and grounds are spectacular and the Legionaires have been superb hosts. Meals are well prepared and served by members of the community who have demonstrated an uncanny ability to anticipate virtually every need.

You can read the full text at Postcard from Bishops meeting in Rome.

Given the circumstances surrounding the legionaries of Christ at this time, their house of formation is an interesting choice to host this meeting. It will be interesting to see if any other new bishops comment on their experience. I'm surprised at how little publicity this event has garnered.


irishmexguate said...

It strikes me that the Vatican is sending a mixed message regarding the Legion of Christ: questioning and approving of the congregation at the same time. I suppose that is the height of Vatican Diplomacy. And I am still a Catholic!

poman said...

Or perhaps it is no mixed message, but just that our expectation or assumption of the Vatican's position on the Legion is inaccurate. There is such a frenzy of conversation around how bad the Legion is, perhaps there is still alot of good that we aren't seeing. Is it possible that those in Rome see some good that others have not? Is it possible that the idea that the Legion is "rotten to the core" may not be entirely accurate, but all the talk in that vein makes it hard for many to see the possibility that there is some good to be salvaged?

Irishmexican43, I can only try and empathize with what you went through all those years. What was obvious truth to you, regarding the allegations and accusations re: Fr. Maciel, was so ignored or disbelieved by those that couldn't fit those accusations into their current "reality" of what the believed him to be. I believe they call that cognitive dissonance.

Yet, it seems the same thing could be happening here for many. There is so much discussion about how the Legion is "rotten to the core" that any move by Rome that indicates some confidence in a part of the Legion just can't fit into that "reality". Is it not possible that there is no mixed message?

I suppose one could be suspicious of the Vatican, not fully understanding why it makes certain decisions, or does not make others. But perhaps there is some wisdom in the decisions they are making with the Legion. Those in charge are not infallible, that is for sure. But I do have a measure of confidence that the Lord is guiding them, even if it doesn't always make sense on a secular level.

Irishmexican43, I am not pointing to you in these comments, it was just the "mixed message" idea that got me thinking about alot of things I've been seeing with the Vatican and the reactions that follow. I suppose once we are in heaven it will all make sense!