Category Archives: Fr. Marcial Maciel

The Legion of Christ/Regnum Christi know better than your local bishop: testimony of former ECYD/RC

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“All of these teachers taught us disloyalty to the bishop. This was part of the Legion’s course of teaching at all times. The bishop was lax; he wasn’t pro-life; he was influenced by liberals and materialists. The Legion of Christ was better than the bishop, because we were carrying out the wishes of the Pope. The bishops were all against the Pope. We were being the real, faithful, conservative Catholics, in defying our bishops. The real Catholics disregarded the bishop and obeyed only the Pope. The Legion was the Hope of the Church, and the Holy Father had said so.

By the time the bishop inevitably cracked down on ECYD and the Legion in my diocese, many of us had been brainwashed to expect it and count it as martyrdom. The bishop was against real, authentic Catholicism. We were the Hope of the Church. We were to do everything we could to defy the bishop in the name of the Church.”

See full article on Catholic blog: Here

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Scandal at the Vatican (New Video on the Legion of Christ)

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Thanks to the initiative of the former Legionary, Xavier Leger, the Irish, RTE, English language dubbing of the original French documentary, is now available.

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Crisis is my Life! autobiography/testimony of David L Sadler

           Shipwrecked

Crisis is my Life

Autobiography of David L. Sadler        

 

DEDICATION:

To my loving family, my parent’s, Steve & Caty & my brother Marc & my best friend Joey who never gave up on me no matter what.  When your love was the hardest to give—is when I needed it the most. And I don’t know what I would have done without it!

 

PREFACE:

I got the title “Crisis is my Life” from “Christ is my Life,” title of the autobiography of the founder of the Legion of Christ, Father Marcial Maciel Degollado, LC. I thought my title would be more appropriate for his story since he was a psychopath, drug addict, pedophile, rapist and was completely corrupt in countless other ways. However, as you read my story—you will see that the title is equally valid to describe my tale. I hope this story touches you and hopefully helps you see God’s kindness and mercy in a new light; that helps you find your inner strength through an honest and courageous journey of self-discovery. Enjoy the read!

 

 

CRISIS IS MY LIFE

 

In the beginning was the Wound….

In Crisis I began through an Emergency C-section. “I want that baby out in 60 seconds or less!”, my grandfather ordered the nurses—as he was Chief of Staff of the hospital, they worked for fear of their jobs if they lost Dr. Sadler’s baby. After a great deal of pain to my mother, I was born David Lloyd Sadler on October 18th, 1983 at Saint Anthony Hospital in Denver, Colorado.  Three months later I was baptized into the Roman Catholic Church at Saint Jude’s Parish— which holds significance due to the fact that he is the Patron of Lost & Hopeless Causes. After reading this story you will understand more clearly why that holds such significance in my heart and soul.  I actually claim to remember this occasion—with both of my parents, Steve & Caty, and my Godfather and my Uncle Mike, standing over me with smiles of joy as the deacon poured the Holy Water over my forehead. I cried, but wasn’t afraid. I felt a sense of peace that is unparalleled to this day.

 

Terrible Twos

From what I can remember, I enjoyed my infancy. I would throw my finger paints on the flow and catch gold-fish out of our small pond in the back yard and even terrorize my mother by throwing eggs at the walls.  When I was about two years old, I was bitten by our beast of a dog, our big black Newfoundland rightly named Tank. Luckily our next door neighbor was a fire fighter and temporarily bandaged the wound on my head as my Dad rushed home to take me to the Emergency Room to get eighteen stitches. This was my second of many near death experiences.

 

Kansas City…

When I was four, right after my little brother Marc was born, my father was transferred to his Corporate Office in Kansas City Missouri. I really enjoyed the good old K.C. We went to baseball games at Royals Stadium and Chiefs games alike. I really got into sports and my father coached my T-ball and soccer teams—in which I became one of the star players after much practice with my Golden Retriever, Happy, in our back yard. Unfortunately, Happy caused another one of my childhood traumas when he had a seizure and died before my very eyes. I was ten years old. This devastated me, as I took it personally and, for some reason, thought it was my fault.

The rest of my childhood was completely joyful. I would ride bikes, go swimming and start clubs with the other neighborhood kids. My family and I would go camping and on nature walks often at Lake of the Ozarks as well as many other joyous vacations and trips back to Denver. The hardest part was being away from my maternal grandfather—whom I practically worshiped as a kid and considered as the ultimate role model and living saint for the rest of my life.

Also when I was ten I made my first communion. This was another paramount event in my life since up until then I was always fascinated with God and religion. I would often drive the nuns crazy in Catechism classes by asking off the wall questions in an attempt to satisfy and unquenchable thirst of spiritual knowledge. Both sets of grandparents came out for this glorious occasion and our Parish priest even inspired me to want to become a priest that day as I wanted his job and wanted to be exactly like him when I grew up. This was a vocation that was fostered for the rest of my youth.

 

Back to 5280…

Also when I was ten my paternal grandmother with whom I was very close, and who also held many saintly qualities. died. This caused us to move back to the Mile-High City—which was bitter-sweet because I got to be with my external family again, but had to say good-bye to all of my close friends. I also had a very hard time adapting to the school system.  The rest of the adolescence was fairly normal. You know: acne, puberty, driver’s license, first job; normal, except for the case of my first girlfriend—who was actually in Columbine High School during the time of the shootings; the shooters even shot into her class room.

I got really involved with religion and Christianity as a whole at this point in my life. I went to a lot of Church events and retreats—Catholic, Protestant and Evangelical. When I was sixteen I even met the Archbishop who became my person spiritual director—which was a great honor, even though I found him to be quite over bearing at times. I visited many seminaries and different religious communities—Franciscans, mostly, until I met a Legionary of Christ at a youth retreat and was instantly impressed with his demeanor and how clean-cut he was and the way he presented himself. So I went over to talk with him and my infatuation with the Legion of Christ began at that very moment.

I became a leader in my church youth group and started a bible study; I even was supposed to become an officer in my public High School’s chapter of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes; but was turned down since I wasn’t considered to be a “real Christian” because I was Catholic. So I ended up going to Catholic School the next year and had to leave my positions on the drum line and the tennis team. At Holy Family High School, I went from being persecuted for being Catholic to being persecuted for being too Catholic—GO FIGURE! I was made fun of and bullied for wanting to be a priest. As the great Archbishop Fulton Sheen once said, if you want your kids to stand up for the faith and defend it – put them in public school, but if you want them to lose it – put them in Catholic School.

 

The Legion

Having had enough persecution for my faith, I finally decided to join a community that was just as radically for Jesus Christ as I was. So hi, hi, ho—off to the Legion I go! I started off in Rome which was one of the best experiences of my life. I got to go into the Vatican Gardens and was even incorporated into the lay movement of the Legion called Regnum Christi (Kingdom of Christ) by the founder himself, Fr. Maciel in St. Peter’s Square. I then decided to attend the boy’s high school seminary, Immaculate Conception Apostolic School, in New Hampshire, following a visit to their primary seminary in Cheshire Connecticut. It was there that the scandal occurred. I noticed how the other boys were being treated by the superiors and the general method of operation within the Legion in general. There was a lot of mind-control and forms of brainwashing that took place after taking us away from all of our family and friends and basically turning us into robots.

Saying good-bye to my family was the hardest part since even though it turned out to be a false diagnosis; the doctors at the time thought that my father had cancer and the Legion’s response seemed to be “Let the dead bury the dead—come and follow me” and “He who does not hate his mother and father and comes and follows me is not worthy of my kingdom,” etc.

I remember telling a superior in one of my “Spirit of the Legion”, AKA brain washing sessions, that me becoming a Legionary at the time felt like putting a square peg into a round hole. His response scared me as he said: “Wait around a couple of weeks, David, and see how you feel.” Needless to say, my natural instinct was to get the heck out of there as quick as possible.

Since the superiors are completely controlling, as most cult leaders are, by reading your mail, listening to and deciding if and when you can make a phone call and even watching you while you sleep, I had to manipulate them to use the phone to call my Mom and told her to get me on the next flight to Denver and if she called back and they didn’t let her talk to me—call the police! She panicked and did just that.

My Mom told me that when I got off the plane in Denver she could barely recognize me: I was literally shaking, and she saw a look of horror on my face that she had never seen before. I tried to cover everything up at first, but I couldn’t and – for the first time ever – I considered ending my life: I could find any reason to live since the phrase in the Legion to keep you in the cult is “lost vocation is sure damnation.” In other words, they make you feel like you traded Jesus for thirty pieces of silver. From then on until this day I have never been the same. I had lost the happy-go-lucky Dave that I had been before and became someone foreign to me that I detested and desperately didn’t want to be anymore. Therefore, I spent the next sixteen years self-medicating with drugs, alcohol, sex and other self-destructive behavior such as cutting and burning myself, getting three DUIs and going to jail for battery. I even tried to kill myself in 2011. I was also diagnosed with Severe Mental Illness such a Bipolar Disorder, Borderline Personality Disorder and Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder from the Legion, sexual abuse by a member of the clergy, and many other traumatic events such as an airplane crashing right behind my house; all of the above leading me to the conclusion that it was just time to end it. My suicide attempt was a blessing in disguise. I had slit my throat and took a combination of fatal pills. Luckily my parents walked in on me in time to call 911 and save my life, even though I was technically dead for over a minute. During that time my grandfather who had passed away in 2007 appeared to me, grabbed my hand and said, “It’s going to be ok, Dave—just take me hand…It’s going to be ok!” I then woke up in the hospital with both of my hands in restraints, and the doctor asking me “Do you know where you are?” and my traumatized family looking over me in tears.

To this day my grandfather’s promise has held true and I desperately want to live. I write this very story as an assignment from my therapist at the Passages Ventura Treatment Center in California where I feel my new life has just started.

 

A new Creation…

I want to close with a story I heard that I don’t know if it is true or not but has deeply impacted my life. It is about how Da Vinci painted his Last Supper. It is told that he used live models and that he spent a year painting each one. He wanted to start with Jesus, since he the most important and central part of the piece. He decided to find an angelic choir boy who gratefully agreed to do so with honor. Then he proceeded accordingly so on and so forth.  Finally, he arrived at Judas. He considered him to be just as equally important as Jesus since he was to offset Jesus in contrast. He searched and searched and could not find his Judas since he wanted a man who was filled with self-hatred and complete bitterness for life. He decided that the only place he could find such a man was in prison.  He finally found his model who agreed to pose within his cell; but the man couldn’t hold still, kept crying, and remained restless. Da Vinci paused and asked the man if he was upsetting him; the prisoner replied: “Don’t you recognize me?” “No I don’t,” said Da Vinci. The man looked down to the ground, wept, then wiped the tears from his eyes and looked back up at Da Vinci saying: “Twelve years ago you painted me as Jesus in this very piece.”

This story has always bothered me ever since I heard it with the Legion’s mandate of “Lost vocation is sure damnation” to make those who ‘betrayed Christ” feel like Judas. Until one of my close spiritual encounters in deep prayer and reflection opened the eyes of my heart and soul to realize: “Dave, why do you have to be one or the other? Why can’t I allow myself to be loved as the sinner I’ve been and trust in God’s unconditional love?”

 

Moving forward…

Maybe you can relate to this story of Da Vinci’s painting, or even to mine to a degree. I just want to share my view of it and how I am going to apply it to my personal life. I truly believe that Judas greatest sin was choosing to give up by letting his guilt get the best of him and deciding to hang himself instead of trusting in God’s mercy.

I promise you, whatever you’ve done, whatever you’re going through or however bad you think you are—God’s mercy is greater than all of our day-to-day nonsense. If we choose not to allow ourselves to be forgiven or forgiving ourselves, refuse to let ourselves off the hook, and keeping ourselves in a perpetual Lent, then what we are basically saying is that what Jesus did on the Cross was worthless and pointless. He died and resurrected for a reason. YOU are that reason. Please trust in that reason! I hope that this story has inspired you in some way, shape or form. It really has helped me find peace and closure on my past and I pray that it will do that same for you.

Please feel free to tell me your story or provide feedback or ask further questions about mine at: dave.sadler@gmx.com –

Peace & Blessings my Good Friends!

In Jesus & Mary,

Dave

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Want to learn more about the Legion/Regnum of Christ and other harmful Christian groups?

Follow the ICSA annual international conference in Dallas, or sign up!

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The International Cultic Studies Association (ICSA) is conducting its 2016 Annual International Conference with Info-Secte/Info-Cult of Montreal in Dallas, Texas. The conference will take place from June 30 through July 2, 2016 (preconference workshops on Wednesday June 29).

Attendees and speakers at past conferences have

The Maciel Affair

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The Maciel Affair.

19 May 2006 – 19 May 2016

Ten years ago today one of the most extraordinary cover-ups was played out in public. It was so public that it was hidden in plain sight.  The Vatican emitted a 23 line communiqué of which only six lines were truly significant. The first 15 lines reviewed a process of investigation that purportedly had started in 1998. Then the communiqué goes on to say:

“ After having submitted the results of the investigation to an attentive study, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, under the guide of its new Prefect, his Eminence Cardinal William Levada, decided – taking account of the advanced age of the Reverend Maciel and his delicate health- to renounce any canonical process and to invite the Father to a reserved life of prayer and penance, renouncing every public ministry. The Holy Father has approved these decisions”  (Translation of communiqué from original Italian emitted by Vatican Press office 19th May, 2006)

                It is a sublime masterpiece of Machiavellian literature.  What makes it so cunning?

Firstly and most importantly it makes absolutely no mention of the victims. It does show great concern for Maciel, his health and his age, but nothing for those who had been abused. This outrageous attitude towards Maciel’s victims has never changed. Pope Benedict refused to meet with them in his visit to Mexico in 2012 as did Pope Francis in his visit in 2015.

The second noticeable element is the use of age as a factor in avoiding a canonical hearing. Canon law has no canon that excludes a person because of their age from being submitted to due process. The great minds in the Vatican conjured up a loophole so that Maciel could escape justice and conveniently avoid a situation where the Vatican’s own complicity might be made evident.  The age of the victims wasn’t an issue but the age of the perpetrator was.

And if age itself was not enough of an excuse to exonerate him from a trial. The Vatican also uses Maciel’s health as a pretext .  What about the health of the victims? What about the years of pain, vilification and guilt to which they had been submitted? That didn’t really matter to the Vatican.  It was never mentioned.

But the use of Maciels health is a masquerade, a pantomime of justice. To what health checks was he submitted ? Which doctors reviewed him to declare him unfit for trail? What diagnosis was required for him to become exempt from the law? The answer is of course; there was no health check, there were no doctors, there was no diagnosis. … there was no proper procedure. It was all a lie.

A person is deemed unfit for trail if he is unable to understand the charges brought against him. This was not the case with Maciel, the same day the communiqué was published Maciel declared his innocence through a Legionary note:

“Father Maciel, with the spirit of obedience to the Church that has always characterized him, has accepted this communiqué with faith, complete serenity and tranquillity 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”  (Statement of the Legionaries of Christ, May 19th 2006, published in Zenit.org)

It was all a farce. In fact Maciel was in good health for his age. After the 19th May 2006 he was well enough to made long intercontinental flights and was able to live independently with his concubine and daughter in Mexico and later in Jacksonville, USA.

A third element that stands out in the note is the “invitation” to a life of prayer and penance. He was declared unfit to stand trial then deemed fit to do penance.  The logical conclusion for a person deemed incapable to stand trial would be for that person to be sent to a hospital or put into care.

But the “invitation” itself is a travesty. An invitation can be declined, turned down or snubbed. An invitation is certainly not a punishment nor a declaration of guilt.  Maciel had no intention of accepting such a pious invitation. It was a get-out-of jail- card which he played with great delight.

In what court or process have we ever heard a person being invited to a life of prayer and penance. The “invitation” mocks the victims, mocks the process and mocks the Vatican. It signifies the lack of sincerity there was in bringing Maciel to justice and it highlights the utter disregard there was for the sufferers of abuse.

No one was ever held responsible for the injustices that were meted out to Maciel’s victims in this fake process. There was no independent investigation,  no cardinals were called to explain how a whole legal procedure was forged to let Maciel off the hook; no one lost their job; no one went to jail. Ten years later Maciel’s victims are still ignored by the Vatican.

 

                Peter Francis Byrne

“All it takes for evil to advance is for good men to do nothing”