Jason Berry points out the risk involved for the Vatican in taking control of the Legion. He poses questions about the Church’s handling of the larger related issue of sexual abuse by the highest Catholic Authorities and why the Vatican ignored credible cases of sexual abuse by Fr. Marcial Maciel the founder of the Legion. Jason Berry points out the challenges that the Vatican now faces in bringing justice as the Legion continues their old tactics of schmoozing and influencing Vatican officials.
There seems to be favorable intentions to provide compensation for some of Fr. Maciel’s victims. Although this would be an unprecedented step, the action seems to fall short, considering that some senior Church authorities are making positive statements about the Legion (
the congregation is strong) and even about Fr. Maciel (
praising the strength and dynamism by which he built up the Legion).
Jason Berry provides a rather dismal image of the
foxes (old guard Legionary priests who defended Fr. Maciel) who have now been entrusted by the Vatican to guard the proverbial hen house (reform and rebuild the Legion).
To see Part 1 of Jason Berry’s Article in the NCR article Gambling With History
ReGAIN Editorial Comment:
ReGAIN shares Jason Berry’s doubts whether or not staunch supporters of Fr. Maciel and the structures he created can be considered to be top choices for such a challenging project. Generally, based on past performance we have noticed that most of the Legionary leaders (excluding those who have left the Legion) have shown a total lack of desire to accept any form of criticism and to even consider changing course to bring about a healthier and more just environment. We have noticed strong tendencies to deny and obfuscate and in some cases to use deception until they are forced by pressure from the Vatican to make changes.
One of ReGAIN’s greatest concerns is in the area regarding freedom of conscience that was recognized in the May 1 Vatican communique. Is anyone who has spent the greater part of their adult lives inside the Legion environment capable of recognizing that it is abnormal to have every aspect of your behavior information thoughts and emotions tightly controlled to the point where you have no personal freedom of thought or conscience?