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Good as an instrument of evil

Olavo de Carvalho

In a world degraded by the arrogance of modernity, the fact that the Legionaries of Christ are an organization nominally devoted to reliving the experience of traditional Catholicism only makes the crimes perpetrated by both its founder and its other leaders all the more serious.

The relationship between the seeming traditionalism of the Legionaries and the modernist deformations of Catholicism is exactly the same as the one St. Augustine observed between pride and the other capital sins: all vices, said he, cling to evil that evil may be accomplished; pride alone clings to the good that good may perish.

Modernists and leftists in general preach error and lies, deform doctrine and liturgy, and do the reverse of what the Church has done for two millennia. Marcial Maciel and his partisans preach the authentic doctrine, follow the rituals faithfully and, seen from the outside, look much like the good Catholics of old, except that they reduce all this to a shell, to a camouflage in the service of crime and wickedness. The former attack the Church from the outside, ostensibly stripping it of everything which adorns and protects it; the latter preserve its vestments and its physiognomy, all the while wounding it directly in the heart.

The damage Maciel and his gang did to Catholicism even reaches the point of surpassing, in some respects, the overall effect of so many blows accumulated over more than one hundred years. Under attack from external enemies or heretics and infiltrated agents, the Church not only preserved its dignity but shone even brighter by means of the glory of martyrdom. Now it is forced to humiliate itself before the world, apologizing for the evil that well-disguised enemies inflicted upon it not from without, but from its innermost circle, under the asinine protection of a pope, John Paul II, who did not want to see the truth in time and ended up protecting the criminals instead of helping the victims.

If making the Church pay for the crimes of its betrayers already constitutes a monstrous injustice, even more intolerable are the attempts to mitigate the scandal, reducing everything to the personal sins of a priest and saving the appearances of the organization he created.

The plea for forgiveness released by the order’s current superior, Álvaro Corcuera, is a masterpiece of cynicism and issue-dodging. On the one hand, it reduces everything down to sex offenses, now four-decades-old, and says nothing of the judicial persecution more recently set in motion, under the leadership of Corcuera himself, in order to intimidate and silence the victims, and to safeguard the sacrosanct public image of the criminal. On the other, it throws all the blame on one isolated individual, as if the vast concurrence of crimes he committed would have been possible without the complicity of his closest advisors and, even more, without the peculiar structure he bequeathed the organization, making it a perfect machine of domination and cover-up.

It is most evident that what differentiates the Legionaries from all the other religious orders is not only the personal conduct of its founder: it is the whole organizational conception of that entity, designed to serve goals that have nothing to do with its nominal purpose, serving the latter only to the extent they were useful to the former.

For what purpose would a religious discipline need to add to the traditional vows of poverty, obedience and chastity, a heretic and extravagant “vow of secrecy,” if not to hide from the outset something intended to be hidden?

For what purpose would a Catholic religious order have to adopt for its novices and lay faithful, besides the old and established pedagogical and disciplinary methods, certain behavior control techniques which originated in the anti-Christian “New Age” movement and in social engineering laboratories, engaged in building the world civilization of the Antichrist?

For what purpose would a religious order need to establish, besides the usual norms of respect and obedience, the idolatrous worship of its leaders, who were flippantly proclaimed as “saints” at first sight, without the slightest critical examination, in outpourings of collective hysterical emotionalism which blaspheme the very notion of holiness?

For what purpose would a religious order need to practice large scale imposition of forced vocations, allegedly revealed by the Holy Spirit to the leaders of the organization and then impinged on astonished youth as a mandate from heaven to which they would never dare say “no”?

Why would a religious order need to devote so much effort to enticing rich laymen and to the speedy build-up of financial and property holdings worth billions?

Why would a religious order need to infiltrate parishes to dominate them, disregarding the jurisdictions of parish priests, and unlawfully constituting itself as an authority higher than that of archdioceses themselves, up to the point that some of these, in the United States, found themselves forced to ban all contact between their parishes and the invading organization? What kind of Catholicism is there in a Gramscian “war of position” against Catholics by a militant body soi-disant Catholic?

No, the Legionaries – who should more appropriately be called the Millionaires – are not a normal religious order, tarnished only by a malign individual who by chance, by mere coincidence, happened to be its founder.

The Legionaries are the very same perverse mentality of such founder, transfigured into a worldwide machine of allurement, psychological domination, manipulation of conduct, and concealment of crimes.

The Church has no reason to ask forgiveness for the evil that has been inflicted upon it from within by a power-and-wealth-hungry group of psychopaths, but it also does not have any reason to try to save face of an organization that turned good into an instrument of evil. This evil must be exposed in all its sinister grandeur, making it clear that it was not practiced “by” the Church, but against it.

It is simply not possible to preserve, at one and the same time, the dignity of the Church and the reputation of the Legionaries. I do not think this is what Benedict XVI wants, but it is clear that both among the enemies of the faith and in the upper hierarchy of the Church itself there are many people interested in giving the impression that this is precisely what he wants.

NB—For more precise and even more incisive information than what has been published in the mainstream media, please read Jason Berry and Gerald Renner, Vows of Silence. The Abuse of Power in the Papacy of John Paul II (New York, Free Press, 2004) and J. Paul Lennon, Our Father, who Are in Bed. A Naïve and Sentimental Dubliner in the Legion of Christ (BookSurge Publishing, 2008), and examine the materials available at and