Legionaries of Christ founder passes away
Fr. Marcial Maciel Degollado L.C.
Fr. Marcial Maciel Degollado L.C.

.- Father Álvaro Corcuera, General Director of the Legionaries of Christ, announced today that their Founder, Father Marcial Maciel Degollado, has died in the United States at the age 87 from natural causes.
In the official statement, Fr. Corcuera announced "the departure of their beloved founder, Father Marcial Maciel Degollado to heaven on January 30,” as well as the Legionaries “deep gratitude to all those who wish to unite in prayer for the eternal repose of his soul".

By the will of Father Maciel, the funeral will be celebrated privately, "in an atmosphere of prayer and simplicity in his hometown, Cotija, in the state of Michoacán, Mexico."
Fr. Marcial Maciel was born in Cotija de la Paz, Mexico on March 10, 1920.

At the age of fifteen, he entered a seminary run by his uncle, Saint Rafael Guizar y Valencia, the bishop of Veracruz. According to his official biography, it was in 1936 when he felt the call to found what in time would become the religious congregation called the Legionaries of Christ, with the later addition of the Regnum Christi lay movement.

On January 3, 1941, with the bishop’s blessing, he established a community in the style of a minor seminary with thirteen teenagers, while he was only 20 years old.

He was ordained a priest on November 26, 1944; and on June 13, 1948, the bishop of Cuernavaca, Bishop Alfonso Espino y Silva, canonically established the religious congregation of the Missionaries of the Sacred Heart and of Our Lady of Sorrows, which would later be called the Legionaries of Christ.

The Legionaries of Christ gained recognition as a congregation of pontifical right through the “Decree of Praise” granted by Pope Paul VI in February of 1965.

The Legionaries of Christ currently have three bishops, about 750 priests, and close to 2,500 aspirants to the priesthood, novices, and religious in formation, with centers established in 20 countries. Regnum Christi currently has 70,000 members from about 40 different nations.

The Center for Higher Studies of the Legionaries of Christ in Rome currently forms more than 400 religious, and through Regnum Christi, Father Maciel also established an international network of Catholic volunteers.

Father Maciel participated in the bishops’ synods on priestly formation (1990), on consecrated life (1994), and on the Americas (1997). He also took part in the Fourth General Conference of the Latin American Episcopate in Santo Domingo (1992).

After directing the congregation for 64 years, Father Maciel declined to accept re-election as the General Director in January of 2005.

Sixteen months later, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith issued a statement to settle the issue of accusations of misconduct leveled against him.

Father Maciel "spent his final years in a private life of prayer, a spirit of obedience, submission, and reverence for the Catholic Church which he had so deeply loved and taught others to love", the official statement says.

A date for his funeral has not been released.

Ads by AdsLiveMedia(What's this?)

* The number of messages that can be online is limited. CNA reserves the right to edit messages for content and tone. Comments and opinions expressed by users do not necessarily reflect the opinions or beliefs of CNA. CNA will not publish comments with abusive language, insults or links to other pages


Ads by Google (What's this?)
Ads by Google (What's this?)

Featured Videos

Pope Francis celebrates the closing Mass and announces site of next World Youth Day
Pope Francis celebrates the closing Mass and announces site of next World Youth Day
Pope Francis visits poor neighborhood and meets with young people from Argentina
Pope Francis celebrates Mass at the National Shrine of Our Lady of Aparecida
Denver rally draws hundreds in support of religious freedom
Pope Francis prays over a sick man in St Peter's Square
Denver women's clinic will offer natural, Catholic care
Interview Clips: Barbara Nicolosi speaks to CNA
US Cardinals press conference at North American College
Pope Benedict to retire to monastery inside Vatican City
Pope cites waning strength as reason for resignation
Hundreds convene in Denver to urge respect for life
New Orange bishop encourages Catholic unity in diversity
Chinese pro-life activist calls for reform, international attention
At Lincoln installation, Bishop Conley says holiness is success
Mother Cabrini shrine reopens in Chicago after a decade
Ordination of 33 deacons fills St. Peter's with joy
Cardinal says "Charity is the mother of all the virtues"
Augustine Institute expands evangelization effort with new campus
Bishops recall 'Way of St. James' as chance to trust in God
Los Angeles cathedral's newest chapel houses Guadalupe relic

Liturgical Calendar

April 18, 2014

Friday of the Passion of the Lord (Good Friday)

All readings:
Today »
This year »

Catholic Daily

Gospel of the Day

Jn 18:1 - 19:42


Daily Readings

First Reading:: Is 52:13-53:12
Second Reading:: Heb 4:14-16; 5:7-9
Gospel:: Jn 18:1-19:42

Homily of the Day

Jn 18:1 - 19:42


Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com
Text only

Follow us: