Speak up! It’s your responsibility as parent, not the Legion’s

Over at Life After RC, reader MnM raises several concerns about Fr. Maciel and the Legion, how children were victimized by him, questioning why the Holy See didn’t intervene in 2006 with an apostolic visitation when children were potentially at risk. After a little back-and-forth, MnM states that he/she is fearful about speaking out publicly because:

My four children attend an LC school. They range in age from PreK to 8th grade. All LC schools require that the children and their parents sign a contract which gives them power to expel the children on the basis of unfavourable behavior from either the children or the parents. The [powers that be] have an immense amount of power and will not hesitate to use it against dissenters.

I’m not here to pick on MnM. As a parent myself who has been involved with movements that ran astray from the Church, I completely understand what MnM is going through. Additionally, I have heard from other parents going through the same thing, parents who re-enrolled their children thinking Fr. Maciel had fathered only one daughter, but who after a summer of reflection and revelation are now questioning their decision to re-enroll their children in LC/RC schools.
I’m not going to tell you whether to do so or not. Only you as the parent know what is best for your children. That’s up to you to discern with God and your spouse, and to make the decision that is best for your child(ren).
However, you should never fear expressing your concerns to your child’s educators. Both the Catechism of the Catholic Church and the Code of Canon Law are clear: parents are the primary educators of their children. This means exactly what it says: the responsibility for your child’s Christian education falls primarily on your shoulders as parents. Therefore, as a Catholic parent, you have both the RIGHT and the OBLIGATION before God to ask questions and demand answers from those who YOU entrust with your child’s education. If you think your children’s Catholic education may be compromised, then you have the same RIGHT and an OBLIGATION before God to act in your child’s best interest.
You assumed this obligation when you chose the vocation of marriage and parent. To validly marry, canon 1055 states a potential spouse must be open to the “procreation and education of children.” As an ecclesiastical judge, I have judged marriages invalid where a spouse was open to the procreation part, but could care less about the child’s upbringing, saying to the other parent: “You wanted the children, you look after them.”
Therefore, if you fear speaking up about matters that concern your child’s education, and if that fear silences you, then you are not living up to your responsibilities of the vocation you chose before God. It’s that simple. You’re not living up to your marriage vows. It is your duty as parent to make the primary decisions about your child’s education. And it’s up to you to act, if you believe your role as parent and primary educator is not being respected or is being undermined.

Maciel, Mom and the Messiah

While ExLC was translating the latest news to come from Spain (click here) and Giselle was surveying Regnum Christi membership decline in local sections (click here), I thought I would take a moment to poke through alleged LC constitutions available on Wikileak. (As an aside, has anyone heard from Cassandra or Fr. Damien Karras concerning recent allegations?)
I won’t go into the Legion’s structure, or ask why they include regulations on how to properly tip one’s soup bowl when dining. Rather, what stood out to me in glancing through the documents was the following hagiography of Mama Maurita, venerated among LC/RC as Fr. Maciel’s mother. In fact, the movement is currently pushing her cause for beatification:

Historical material pertaining to Our Founder

472. To gather historical material pertaining the family of Our Founder, especially Mama Maurita [the mother of Marcial Maciel Degollado], the instrument chosen by God to give life to Nuestro Padre and to prepare the earth in which his vocation as a Christian, a priest and the Founder of the Legion of Christ would germinate.[emphasis mine]
473. We consider it appropriate at this time to inform you that the Commission for the Cause of the Beatification of Mama Maurita has now been put in place and will in time be releasing information on the steps which it has been taking. Meanwhile, the Chapter Fathers invite our legionary brothers to intensify their prayers so that God may grant us the grace of seeing in the not too distant future Mama Maurita placed on altars, for the good of the Church, of the Legion and of the Movement.

Okay, anybody else troubled by this?
Not to say Fr. Maciel’s mother wasn’t a holy woman. She may or may not have been – I don’t know and that’s not where I’m going here. However, whatever her level of sanctity, does she deserve the same to messianic hagiography as the Blessed Mother, who prepared the way for Christ? Especially given that Fr. Maciel ended his life a disgrace to the Church.
The contemporary Church doesn’t even use this type of messianic language for St. Monica, who bore St. Augustine – a great convert, confessor, father and doctor of the Church, not to mention founder of the institute bearing his name. However, in Advent-like narrative, Mama Maurita was uniquely chosen by God to prepare the earth for and give birth to Fr. Maciel!
Suddenly, I understand why Fr. Maciel compared himself to Christ suffering on the cross in silence when the Holy See invited him to retire to a life of prayer and penance.

A dozen and counting

I’m wondering whether Rob Zombie will announce that his next film project is a biography of Fr. Maciel…
Yesterday’s El Mundo, which I am told by Hispanic readers is Spain’s second-most-widely read newspaper, and which carried the original interview with the mother of Fr. Maciel’s daughter, has just published a new article alleging that the Fr. Maciel illegitimate children count is up to twelve. ExLCBlog has an English translation here.
The only positive is that at least nobody is accusing Fr. Maciel of sending his concubines off to the abortuary. Of course, who knows what new allegations will arise tomorrow?