So here's the deal. I was in a Legionary house of formation for the priesthood for four and a half years, starting in 1996 and ending in 2000. I was a first hand witness to a lot of the crap that went on there. In my defence, I joined when I was thirteen years old and assimilated into the culture with all the ease of someone of my age, therefore I never spoke out against it and if I had I would not have been there for one year never mind four.
The reason I bring this up is because I had recent cause to view photos on facebook taken by a friend of mine and fellow ex Legionary, that were taken when we were children in attendance at Immaculate Conception Apostolic school in Center Harbour, New Hampshire. One of the photos was of Fr. Marcial Maciel waving to us adoring young boys. This got me thinking about the man we all called Nuestro Padre.
When I was at the apostolic school we all had to attend history of the Legion classes. In these classes we all had to memorize facts about the Legion. These were memorized in a question/answer format much like the one used by the Baltimore Catechism. One of the questions we had to memorize was the name of the founder. Marcial Maciel Degallado Guizar Valencia. Obviously he had a first name, Marcial. A last name, Maciel, followed by the names of mother's parents names Guizar Valencia. He was the grand nephew of St. Raphael Guizar Valencia.
It was this great-uncle whose clandestine seminary Marcial joined as a young man during the Cristero revolution. He was kicked out of this seminary not long after joining. We were told that poor Marcial was persecuted by other seminarians and priests who did not understand his piety. We now know that it was not for this reason that he was kicked out at all as has recently come to light. He was kicked out for his lack of chastity. In fact, Marcial was kicked out of seminaries all over the country until he managed to form his own order, which he called the Legionaries of Christ. (I think he had a different name for it back in the forties but I can't remember off the top of my head).
I have long since lost all contact with the Legion except for one brother of mine who is still a member. I have been contemplating sending a letter to the Archbishop of Denver, Charles J. Chaput, who has been charged by the holy father with the Apostolic visitation of the Legionary houses of formation. In this letter I would outline my experiences for his benefit. Are their any thoughts out there on this proposed letter?