Fr. Álvaro Corcuera, general director of the Legionaries of Christ, wrote a letter to Legionaries and members of the Regnum Christi Movement on March 25, explaining the intent behind a communique that was issued on Thursday that acknowledged and asked forgiveness for the “reprehensible actions” of their founder, Fr. Marcial Maciel. In the letter, Fr. Corcuera said that leaders of the order hope to “close this chapter of history and open a new one.”
Jim Fair, communications director for the Legionaries told CNA on Friday that the communique was issued during the territorial directors annual meeting in Rome.
“It has been a very painful time for everyone, even traumatic,” Fr. Corcuera wrote on Thursday. “The sudden uncovering of some facets of our founder’s life that were so removed from what we lived by his side, was a totally unexpected surprise for us all. We were not prepared for it.”
“In recent days,” he added, “I have been thinking through all of this with the general counselors and the territorial directors. Together, we have seen that once we have all read and assimilated this page in the life of the Legion of Christ and Regnum Christi, our task is to take a step forward, individually and as an institution, to close this chapter of our history and open a new one.”
Fr. Corcuera also referenced the Apostolic Visitation of the Legion of Christ, which began on July 15 of last year, and will conclude with a meeting with the Vatican's Secretary of State on April 30. The five bishops who were appointed to the visitation will then present their final report after eight months of work.
“It is true that we are still awaiting the results of the apostolic visitation, whose operative phase has ended,” noted Fr. Corcuera. “Undoubtedly, our attitude is one of complete openness, and we will embrace supernaturally and with docility whatever the Holy Father sees fit to ask of us. But until that moment comes, which is presumably still some months away, we want to get moving, so to speak, to set out again on our way with faith and humility, and throw ourselves back into working with all our ardor in the mission the Lord has given to us at the service of the Church.”
The communique, said Fr. Corcuera, “besides what it means in itself, is also in function of this goal of institutional re-launching.”
“We have tried to make every decision and take every step in the presence of God, trying to discern how Jesus Christ would act,” he wrote, adding, “But I am not infallible. I don’t know if I got it right. For certain, not in everything.
“The other directors also may very well have committed some mistakes among countless wise actions. But what is without doubt is that God can write straight with crooked lines. In spite of the great limitations and defects of his instruments, God has guided our trajectory in the past, and he will continue to guide us in the future.”