Legion Elects New Director General and Other Leaders

The Legionaries of Christ have elected Father Eduardo Robles Gil, a Mexican priest as their new director general at the general chapter that is taking place in Rome. Other new leaders have also been chosen as follows.

  • General Director: Fr. Eduardo Robles Gil, LC.
  • Vicar General: Fr. Juan José Arrieta, LC. (appointed by the Holy See)
  • General Councilor: Fr. Sylvester Heereman, LC.
  • General Councilor: Fr. Jesús Villagrasa, LC.
  • General Councilor: Fr. Juan Sabadell, LC. (appointed by the Holy See)
  • General Administrator: Fr. José Gerardo Cárdenas, LC.
  • General Procurator: Fr. Clemens Gutberlet, LC.

Nicole Winfield of Associated Press http://bigstory.ap.org/article/legion-elects-superior-vatican-names-top-advisers has commented that the Holy See itself appointed two comparatively reform-minded priests to serve on the order’s governing council, including the new No. 2. The Vatican said had intended to make its own appointments all along to help encourage trust in the new leadership. She added that the newly elected Director General was a long time favorite of the Legion’s disgraced late founder, the Rev. Marcial Maciel. Legion priests who have left the order called him a spiritual son of Maciel and say his election shows no break from the order’s troubled past.

The AP article quotes a former LC priest who is now working in the Archdiocese of Brasilia as commenting that the Holy See may be trying to keep peace in the Legion and avoid more from abandoning the Legion.

According to the AP article, the 60 or so Legionaries who attended the general chapter issued a repentant apology, acknowledging the shortcomings of Legion superiors who refused to tell the truth about Maciel, even though they knew he had fathered a child. They also apologized to the original victims of Maciel, who were defamed by the Legion and accused of having lied when in fact they had been sexually abused by the founder, Fr Maciel.

ReGAIN Comment

It is difficult to understand why the Vatican has shown so much concern about people leaving the Legion and the consecrated life in Regnum Christi. Because of the aggressive recruiting tactics used by both groups, many of the LC priests and RC 3gf’s never had an opportunity to carry out an adequate discernment of vocation and once they were inside they were subjected to techniques that are considered to be mind control practices. Why would the Vatican not encourage people who are living out forced vocations to take a sabbatical and discern where God wishes them to serve Him.

Although any apology is welcome, we feel it is an extreme case of too little too late. A general sort of forced apology that comes years after the offences took place and was identified and after years of investigations and appointment of a Vatican Delegate seem lame. It is the sort of apology that the class bully offers after the principal drags him to his victims by the ear. The tone of the Legion apologies at this late stage lacks sincerity. To date, compensation payments to victims have been described as miserly and Legion leaders until now have avoided sharing any of the blame for Legionary woes with their founder.

Regarding their selection of a new Director General, some ReGAIN friends have described the new director General as a Maciel clone. It seems to us as if Nuestro Padre is eerily and creepily reaching out from his grave to maintain control of his creation. In his opening address http://www.romereports.com/pg155731-new-director-of-the-legionaries-we-want-things-to-go-back-to-normal–en
the new Fr. Eduardo Robles Gil stated (prophetically perhaps) that he wants things to go back to normal. That is a scary thought for those of us who have been hoping and praying for authentic reform in the Legion.

It seems that the Legion has not yet discovered that if they wish to rebuild their lost credibility and trust they need to show a desire to break away from their old ways and prayerfully determine some new direction that has some spiritual objective. Father Maciel was an absolute dictator over the Legion and Regnum Christi. Nobody was allowed to criticise him or to even challenge him. He did all the thinking for everyone to the point where his loyal followers lost much of their ability to think independently and logically. Their old self serving structure and methodology suited the founder to get what he wanted and to a lesser extent it serves the ones in control of the Legion to get what they want. If there is to be any move forward, there would need to be a miraculous change in thinking and attitude so that the LC religious order and RC religious movement would reach outward to serve some other people.

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