Father Luis Garza Steps Down as Vicar General of the Legionaries of Christ
According to a report from Catholic News Agency (CAN) written by David Kerr, Click Here Fr. Luis Garza is stepping down as Vicar General of the Legion and will be relocating to take over as Territorial Director of North American activities. The two existing territories “New York and Atlanta” will be merged into a single territory under Fr. Garza as of August 1.
This announcement comes just a month after Fr. Garza had announced that he had no intention of stepping down from his (second-in-command) position in the Legion overall. He had said that he expected possible changes in leadership only after the General Chapter meeting, which could still be several years away.
The announcement raises several questions to Legion watchers:
Why is Fr. Garza, the Number 2 Legionary relocating to the U.S.?
Is this a demotion or is it a new opportunity for the powerful Legionary?
Possibly this was a move by the Vatican Delegate, Cardinal DePaolis to send Fr. Garza far away from Rome because he was seen as being an obstacle to reform. On the other hand, Fr. Garza may have chosen to locate to a place where he could manage his financial empire undisturbed by prying Vatican officials.
He may have chosen to come here to try to do some damage control considering the loss of vocations, reputation and donations in the U.S. market. He may see the move as an opportunity to increase his power and influence in North America and to strengthen his position to reestablish himself into senior management of the Legion at the next General Chapter.
It is a significant change but for the time being it is difficult to tell what the long term consequences will be for the Legion and for Regnum Christi. The details of archbishop Blazquez?s report for his visitation to Regnum Christi have not yet been officially revealed. Unofficial reports claim that he recommends separation of Regnum Christi from the Legion. If that is the case, then the timing of Fr. Garza?s move and the consolidation of the two territories into one could be related to the long term situation.
Based on an announcement on Regnum Christi?s website Click Here Fr John Connor, the former territorial director of Atlanta has been appointed chaplain of the Lumen Institute and will assist in fund raising in Atlanta. Fr Julio Marta? has not yet been reassigned.