>Click here for Article reported that the Legion is ending their role in the Sacramento area following their decision in 2011 to close their only U.S Legion run university and their Immaculate Conception Apostolic School, a high school seminary in Colfax, California. The university formerly offered masterâ€™s programs in theology and catechesis.According to the Sacramento Bee: â€œLocal officials say the local withdrawal is a product of the order shrinking and re-evaluating where to focus its priestsâ€�. The article also mentions some of the troubles that the Legion has had in recent years, specifically with â€œcontroversy and scandal in the past decade involving some of their best-known leadersâ€�.
ReGAIN would like to focus attention on the true purpose for the Legionary presence in Sacramento and in fact their true purpose for being anywhere and offer an opinion why they are closing schools in the US.
Why does the Legion have educational facilities? Were the schools in Sacramento and elsewhere established for a spiritual purpose to provide Catholic education? Or is it more likely that these institutions existed as a means to some end?
Let us suggest an answer by posing another question. Did the Legionary founder, Father Marcial Maciel Degollado show that he had a genuine burning desire to spread the gospel message through education? Was Catholic education the charism of the Legion and Regnum, Christi? Based on the Vatican May 10 communique it seems extremely unlikely that Father Maciel established his schools with a spiritual purpose in mind, because according to the May 1, 2010 Vatican communique: â€œincontrovertible evidence has confirmed, sometimes resulted in actual crimes, and manifests a life devoid of scruple and of genuine religious sentimentâ€�.
What are Legionary schools like for the students who attend? A new blog entitled â€œ49 Weeks a Yearâ€� Click Here provides actual testimonies of some of those who formerly attended the Immaculate Conception Academy in Rhode Island that prepares girls of high school age for a possible â€œvocationâ€� to consider a â€œconsecrated lifeâ€� in Regnum Christi.
According to several of these testimonies, many of the former students suffered real mental, emotional and spiritual damage in their years at Immaculate Conception Academy. The home page of the blog states that the former students wish to share their stories â€œto warn parents of the very real dangers of handing your daughters over to this flawed institutionâ€�.
The testimonies are heart wrenching. Some suffered depression while others felt overly constricted by all the rules. Some felt isolated. The relationships between the teenage girls and their parents, other family members and former friends obviously deteriorated in some cases during the time they were in the school. Imagine attending a high school where you are not allowed to have particular friends and where your opportunities to have normal conversations with the other students is severely restricted and there is no privacy. What would it be like to be part of a group of young people who are never allowed to entertain negative thoughts or doubts or uncharitable feelings? One of the young ladies mentions how she was made to feel fearful of â€œlosing all possibility of fulfilment and happiness (you can never be truly happy or fulfilled if you chose something else than God’s plan!), you face the life-long guilt of denying other soulsâ€� (being able to see God)â€�.
The conditions referred to in the 49 weeks blogspot match up well with those included in the ReGAIN article Click Here that compared the Regnum Christi consecrated womenâ€™s way of life to life for typical cult group members that are exposed to mind control.
So why were the schools really there?
Cult groups exist primarily to recruit and to fund raise to gain power and money for the supreme leaders. Could that be the primary reason for Father Maciel developing the Legionary schools? Those who consider enrolling their children in such a school have to decide for themselves. It seems obvious from the testimonies referred to above that there was excessive pressure being exerted (mind control) on these young people to mold them to become obedient to their spiritual advisers (the ones who the girls said were reading their mail). One result of mind control is to seriously impair a personâ€™s critical thinking ability. This is certainly not a good objective for any educational system.
A key question that begs asking at this stage is why the Legion is shutting down their schools?
If providing Catholic education were an important part of the Legion and Regnum Christiâ€™s primary reason for being, (as in charism) one would think they would do everything in their power to keep their schools going. If the Legion run schools were providing an excellent quality of education and spiritual formation then we would expect that the students and their parents would step forward to offer as much support as possible to keep them going. That does not seem to be happening. In fact, it is obvious that enrolments in areas such as Sacramento have dropped to the point where it is no longer profitable to keep the schools in operation.
So if you look at the situation from a perspective of following the money the logical explanation for the Legion pulling out of an area is because they choose to remain in those areas where the profits are the greatest.
This raises other questions. Is the Legion primarily a religious order or a business? Is it wise for a parent to choose a school system if the system is based on maximum profitability for itself rather than for maximum benefit for its students?