From the site of Sandro Magister comes this about the status quaestionis of the Legionaries of Christ.
Legion Leaders Absolve Themselves Before They Sink
In an internal memo, published here, they say they never knew anything about the double life of their founder, Maciel. But the judgment of the Vatican authorities says otherwise. The imminent appointment of the papal delegate
by Sandro Magister
ROME, May 17, 2010 – Back from Portugal, Benedict XVI finds on his agenda once again the arduous case of the Legionaries of Christ.
Soon the pope will have to implement the three decisions announced in the statement of the Holy See on May 1:  the appointment of a papal delegate with full powers over the Legion;  the appointment of a commission to study the constitutions of the congregation;  the appointment of an apostolic visitor for its lay movement, Regnum Christi.
As for the delegate, the only candidacy taken under consideration at the Vatican meeting on April 30 and May 1, that of Cardinal Juan Sandoval Íñiguez, 77, the outgoing archbishop of Guadalajara, has had no follow-up. The cardinal has said that he was not approached and does not consider himself to be the right person, while saying that in any case he is at the disposal of the Holy Father, bound to him by the oath of obedience.
But there is an interesting passage in the note concerning this published on May 7 on the website of the Mexican bishops’ conference: the one in which Cardinal Sandoval expresses his hope that the delegate will be one of the five bishops who recently concluded the apostolic visitation of the Legion.
Among these, the two most likely candidates seem to be Ricardo Ezzati Andrello, the Salesian bishop of Concepción, 68, Chilean but Italian by birth, and Giuseppe Versaldi, bishop of Alessandria, 67, an expert canonist. Both enjoy the complete trust of cardinal secretary of state Tarcisio Bertone. And both are rising stars in their respective episcopates, the former rumored to be the next archbishop of Santiago, Chile, the latter of Turin: one of these appointments would have to be set aside if the nod went to either of them, for an undertaking that will demand a great deal of time and energy.
In addition to the appointment of the delegate, the anticipation also concerns the powers that will be attributed to him, and his future working agenda.
There are also interesting passages on this, in another note that appeared on May 6 on the website of the episcopal conference of Mexico, the country in which the Legionaries of Christ were founded and have their greatest following.
In it, the current leaders of the Legion are criticized in no uncertain terms. They are accused of "pressuring the pope to act in favor of their interests." [Yah….. that’s going to work.] It is taken for granted, as a result, that the papal delegate "will remove en bloc the current governing council of the Legionaries and the regional directors." And it is predicted that the Legion, in order to "refound itself" on the basis of a new charism, and to make a clean break with its unworthy founder Marcial Maciel, will also have to give up its current name, perhaps returning to its original name of Missionaries of the Sacred Heart and of Our Lady of Sorrows.
Both at the Vatican, therefore, given the extremely severe statement of May 1, and in a bishops’ conference as pivotal as the Mexican one is, the views of the trustworthiness of the current heads of the Legionaries are entirely negative.
And yet, these same leaders, and in particular their two highest representatives, director general Álvaro Corcuera and vicar general Luís Garza Medina, both Mexican, continue to present themselves as the men best suited to stay in the saddle, even during the transition phase.
Publicly, the two of them, and Garza in particular, have done this with statements and interviews, before the Vatican statement on May 1.
But it is above all on the inside that they are trying to convince. With constant talks, meetings, letters, they are pressing for the allegiance of the hundreds of priests and religious of the Legion who are most disoriented after the revelations of the unworthy life of the founder. [It would be interesting to see who how many are fleeing to dioceses and other communities.]
The longer it takes for the papal delegate to arrive, the more Corcuera and Garza are counting on fortifying the internal consensus around them, making their removal – they hope – more difficult, if not impossible.
One clear sign of their intentions is in the internal memo that the territorial heads of the Legion sent to their subordinates on May 5.
The complete text of this memo – made public on May 6 by the Italian blog "Settimo cielo," linked to www.chiesa – is reproduced further below.
In it, the current leaders of the Legion not only minimize the damaging force of the Vatican statement on May 1, but they also deny the accusation that they knew for many years about the double life of founder Marcial Maciel, and covered it up.
In fact, they write in the memo that when the Vatican statement says that "most of the Legionaries were unaware of this life," this "means that the majority knew nothing, including those who are currently in command of the Legion." [Hmmmm…. Possible, I suppose, given the level of deceit of the man in question.]
But then who made up the "system of power" that – as the Vatican statement affirms – built around Maciel a "mechanism of defense" of his unworthy life, with the "silence of the entourage" and with the "deplorable discrediting and ostracism of those who doubted his upright behavior"? Of whom was it composed, if not the leaders of today and yesterday?
Implausibly, [Clearly Magister isn’t buying that.] after absolving themselves this way, the authors of the memo add that "it remains to be examined whether there was culpability on the part of those whom the Vatican statement mentions." As if, in addition to the double life of Maciel, there was also a double leadership at the head of the Legion, [Ouch.] the second of them also kept concealed.
As for the agenda of the delegate whom the pope will appoint, a hypothetical game plan has been sketched out by Catholic American intellectual George Weigel, in an extensive commentary on the website of the magazine "First Things."
According to Weigel, a first imperative must be the total repudiation of the "grand narrative" linking the history of the Legion to the figure of its founder, Maciel, whose merits many continue to praise even though they recognize his offenses.
One glaring example of how well this "grand narrative" has worked, even outside of the Legion, is given by a homily addressed to the Legionaries by Cardinal Franc Rodé, prefect of the Vatican congregation for religious, on July 29, 2007, more than a year after the papal condemnation of their founder:
"What brings admiration in the Legion of Christ is the fruit of the genius of Fr. Maciel. The Lord has blessed you in recent years with many vocations, and will continue to bless you if you remain faithful to the charism he left to you. Where must the origin, the source of Fr. Maciel’s wisdom be sought? In his love for Christ, in his love for the Church. That is where the secret of his life and the secret of his work lies. It is this that permitted him to build an outreach of global dimensions." [I guess a secular analogy is that you can’t praise a dictator for having made the trains run on time.]
Once this "grand narrative" has been eliminated, the steps suggested by Weigel are the following:
– removing the current central and territorial leaders en bloc, and expelling the ones tainted by complicity with Maciel;
– suspending the acceptance of new vocations;
– identifying the inspirational charism on which to rebuild the Legion from scratch;
– convening a general chapter to dissolve the Legion and reconstitute a new religious congregation, with a new statute, with a new name and with carefully screened members.
Realistic or not, the agenda suggested by Weigel will be a long time coming.
To which it must be added that Benedict XVI will meet with some of the victims of Maciel’s abuse. This was confirmed by one of the five visitors, Mexican bishop Ricardo Watti Urquidi, in an interview on Televisa.
The following is the memo that the territorial heads of the Legion sent to their subordinates on May 5, 2010.
The statement to which the memo refers is the one released by the Holy See last May 1, at the end of the meeting between the Vatican authorities and the five apostolic visitors charged with inspecting the Legion, reproduced with commentary in this article from www.chiesa:
> The Big "Wager." How to Remake the Legion from Scratch
LEGIONARIES OF CHRIST. INTERNAL MEMO OF MAY 5, 2010
1. The Holy See has asked us that this be a time of reflection and prayer, so it is not appropriate for us to make comments or declarations about the Statement. This is the reason why we have not made any further public statements.
This does not imply that we are not helping and communicating the essential elements to foster peace, unity, and the acceptance of the Statement. On the contrary, within the contents of the Statement and with due prudence, we must communicate and offer accompaniment across various channels, above all personal and group. As for the precise details, we must at every moment adhere to the fact that we have no official information beyond that of the Statement itself. As soon as we receive further information, we will communicate it to you. In the meantime, we must not allow ourselves to draw conclusions or interpretations in this regard.
2. Nonetheless, it is necessary that you help all (Legionaries, consecrated members, members and friends of Regnum Christi, benefactors, employees) to:
a. Accept the dispositions of the Holy See with profound faith in God and with filial obedience to the Holy Father.
b. Exert ourselves to build unity among all, and in a special way with the Holy Father. One must come away from every meeting with a meek and humble heart.
c. Strengthen trust in the Providence of God and face the future with great serenity and with a positive spirit.
d. Concentrate on the greatness and urgency of the mission of evangelization that obligates the Church, and us within it. It is there, on the proclamation of the Gospel, on the salvation of souls and on the extension of the Kingdom of Christ, that we keep our eyes focused.
3. So also, help the positive parts of the Statement on the Legion to be understood as well. Many communication outlets are spreading only the corrections and the negative aspects, which tends to distort many of the messages.
4. In personal attention, in the meetings and conferences that are held in the communities, in groups, in the sections and activities, it is necessary to clarify some mistaken messages that certain media are spreading:
a. The Statement does not speak of "refounding," but rather of "profound revision" and "purification."
b. It does not speak of changing the charism, instead it speaks of the "core charism that belongs to the Legionaries of Christ and is proper to them," of the "need to redefine the charism . . . while preserving the true core," of "an authentic gift from God, a treasure for the Church"; the pope "urges them not to lose sight of the fact that their vocation, sprung from the call of Christ and inspired by the ideal of being witnesses of his love to the world, is an authentic gift from God, a treasure for the Church, the indestructible foundation on which to build their personal future and that of the Legion."
c. It is not a rejection of the Legion of Christ by the pope. Rather it says that "the pope renews to all the Legionaries of Christ, to their families, to the laypeople involved in the movement Regnum Christi, his encouragement, at this difficult moment, for the congregation and for each one of them." And "the Holy Father intends to reassure all the Legionaries and members of the movement Regnum Christi that they will not be left alone: the Church has the firm intention of accompanying and assisting them in the journey of purification that is waiting for them." [We shall see.]
d. When it says that "most of the Legionaries were unaware of this life [of Marcial Maciel]," this means that the majority knew nothing, including those who are currently in command of the Legion. [We shall see.] It remains to be examined whether there was culpability on the part of those whom the Statement mentions.
e. Regarding the Delegate, the Holy Father has not specified the name of the person, his faculties, or the dates. Nor has there been any further information about the apostolic visitation to the consecrated members of Regnum Christi, although this has been confirmed.
Divine Providence has permitted us to experience this path of purification. Living it with faith, hope, and charity is an opportunity that God offers us to give witness to his love. Let us see it as an opportunity for evangelization.