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A Bit Of History


By May 19 2006 Issue of Commonweal Blog


The following is quoted from May 19 2006 posting on Commonweal blog:Click Here for original

COMMUNIQUE CONCERNING FOUNDER OF LEGIONARIES OF CHRIST

VATICAN CITY, MAY 19, 2006 (VIS) With reference to recent news concerning the person of Fr. Marcial Maciel Degollado, founder of the Legionaries of Christ, the Holy See Press Office released the following communique:

    Beginning in 1998, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith received accusations, already partly made public, against Fr. Marcial Maciel Degollado, founder of the Congregation of the Legionaries of Christ, for crimes that fall under the exclusive competence of the congregation. In 2002, Fr. Maciel published a declaration denying the accusations and expressing his displeasure at the offence done him by certain former Legionaries of Christ. In 2005, by reason of his advanced age, Fr. Maciel retired from the office of superior general of the Congregation of the Legionaries of Christ.

    All these elements have been subject to a mature examination by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and in accordance with the Motu Proprio Sacramentorum sanctitatis tutela, promulgated on April 30 2001 by Servant of God John Paul II, the then prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, authorized an investigation into the accusations. In the meantime, Pope John II died and Cardinal Ratzinger was elected as the new Pontiff.

    After having attentively studied the results of the investigation, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, under the guidance of the new prefect, Cardinal William Joseph Levada, decided bearing in mind Fr. Maciel's advanced age and his delicate health to forgo a canonical hearing and to invite the father to a reserved life of penitence and prayer, relinquishing any form of public ministry. The Holy Father approved these decisions.

    Independently of the person of the Founder, the worthy apostolate of the Legionaries of Christ and of the Association 'Regnum Christi' is gratefully recognized.

    Just an invitation to relinquish any form of public ministry as a priest. That's all. The Legionaries of Christ has responded:

    The Legion of Christ and the Regnum Christi Movement in response to the communique of the Holy See renew their commitment to serve the Church

    In reference to the news regarding the conclusion of the investigation of the accusations made against Fr. Marcial Maciel, our beloved father founder, the Congregation of the Legionaries of Christ offer the following statement:

      1. Fr. Marcial Maciel has received during his life a great number of accusations. In the last few years, some of these were presented to the Holy See so that a canonical process would be opened.

      2. Facing the accusations made against him, he declared his innocence and, following the example of Jesus Christ, decided not to defend himself in any way.

      3. Considering his advanced age and his frail health, the Holy See has decided not to begin a canonical process but to invite him to a reserved life of prayer and penance, renouncing to any public ministry.

      4. Fr. Maciel, with the spirit of obedience to the Church that has always characterized him, he has accepted this communique with faith, complete serenity and tranquility of conscience, knowing that it is a new cross that God, the Father of Mercy, has allowed him to suffer and that will obtain many graces for the Legion of Christ and the Regnum Christi Movement.

      5. The Legionaries of Christ and the members of the Regnum Christi, following the example of Fr. Maciel and united to him, accept and will accept always the directives of the Holy See with profound spirit of obedience and faith. We renew our commitment to work with great intensity to live our charism of charity and extend the Kingdom of Christ serving the Church.






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