Friday, July 2, 2010

48 Hours (Revisited)

You really have got to love this. You know how I went on a roll about how long it took for my superiors to get back to me about the meeting I had with my bishop? Well, I think I need to give you an update. But first, let’s just get the timeframe into perspective.

June 21 – I met with Bishop “J”
June 22 – I sent an e-mail to DG, DT, Local and one other priest.
June 24 – I posted my “48 Hours” note
June 25 – Local superior spoke to me, 71 hours and 35 minutes. He excused himself saying that it was out of his hands; it was something the major superiors had to handle, but he mentioned a fact which I will speak of below.
June 25 – DT sent an e-mail, 73 hours and 9 minutes. He excused himself saying he was doing a study course and had intensive meetings.
June 26 – DG wrote me. 96 hours and 10 minutes. He excused himself saying he doesn’t always check his personal e-mail account. But he congratulated me for my surrender, for fighting to be a holy priest, and thanked me for all the good I have done.
June 27 – Finally, the other priest I mentioned wrote to me. I’ll let you figure out the hours it took. He, incidentally, will be the delegate DT will send to meet with Bishop “J” next week to discuss my leaving the legion and entering his diocese.

Sorry I went into these details, but I think they are important. You see, when my local superior spoke to me, he mentioned a fact that I was already aware of, but had not posted among the updates. One of the DT’s from the states wrote an e-mail to me saying he had visited one of the bishops I had written to, and this bishop would be open to accepting me in his diocese. It turns out that it is the bishop of my home diocese.

I didn’t think this remarkable at the moment. But let’s put it into perspective. The e-mail from DT in the States was sent on June 24. My superior spoke to me one the following day, and that began a flurry of communication from the other superiors.

Just let me transcribe the first lines of DT from the State’s e-mail. “Last week I had a meeting with Mons. X, Bishop of Y, and during the meeting he mentioned he received your petition, and would like to meet with you…” Last week? Well that’s odd because today, July 2, I received a letter, by mail, from the bishop of my home diocese and, get this; it was dated and post marked June 24, 2010 – the same day that DT from the states wrote me his e-mail.

Well it is obvious to me that the 48 to 72 plus hour period was not spent idle, or in meetings, or whatever. They were diligently working to come up with other options. Why? Damage control, of course. Leaving the legion and moving into the diocese where I am presently working--- I’m sorry ---where I am presently not working, or un-working, or unemployed… Anyway, leaving the legion and moving into the dioceses where I had been working would cause too many ripples in the pool of faithful followers.

Originally I didn’t want to be in a diocese anywhere near the legionaries. But after having been pushed into a quick decision by taking away from me all apostolic work, they are getting what they deserve.

I will definitely make sure I sit down and speak to the priest who will meet with Bishop “J” on the DT’s behalf and find out what he is planning on saying. Heck, I’ll even make sure I drive him to the meeting.


  1. "I will definitely make sure I sit down and speak to the priest who will meet with Bishop “J” on the DT’s behalf and find out what he is planning on saying."

    Do you think he'll tell you the truth?


    Once you are out and free of the mind games, you will see the Truth more clearly.

    For right now, just allow them to lay out that rope.

    You take the high road.

  2. That "A-ha!" moment never quite loses its punch, no matter how much you think you have prepared yourself for the deceit and subterfuge, the spin and the lies.

    My only piece of advice is this: don't let the urge to give them what they deserve (the messiness of real life in the form of YOU still existing in their diocese and quite possibly disturbing the serenity of their loyal followers--how dare you, you rebel! lol) get in the way of a possibly better opportunity for you.

    I'll admit I'm biased, because we need priests like you here in the States :) But seriously, pray hard over this one. Don't overlook the idea that God may be opening a door for you to return to your home diocese. I'll be praying for you, too.

    And if you discern that God is indeed calling you to stay in your current diocese, well I hope you cause a lot of ripples---ripples of truth and justice for the men and women like you who have endured such suffering at the hands of this system of power and the abuses of conscience and authority condemned by the Holy See.

  3. Padre you are right to be suspicious of their motives. May God lead you to the best place for you to live and minister. Try to take some time to detox. Parish life is wonderful, but demanding.

  4. Father please come to the Toledo Diocese. We would love to have you here. We'll even wine you and dine you. Our bishop would welcome you here with open arms and there are no Legionaries stationed here. RC is near extinction here so there would be minimal chance of encounter with other Legionaries. We already have a priest who has left another order which has experienced similar scandals and he is doing great. The young priest of our diocese are phenomenal and would love to have another great priest in their diocese. Toledo would be the perfect place.

  5. Fr. Jack,
    It would be very helpful if you would explain the steps of the canonical process you are following. Did your superiors explain to you what to do and the time frame for each step?

    My guess is you are seeking ultimately 'exclaustration ad experimentum' leading to the indult of departure of the institute. This requires a letter from a receiving bishop, a consultative opinion of the Supreme Moderator and his counsel, a report to the receiving Bishop (I though this should be done in writing not verbally) and then the whole package- [1. Your Letter, 2. Bishop's letter of acceptance, 3. Opinion of Supreme Moderator] is then delivered to the Congregation for Religious. I suppose their turnaround time is about 6 months. Should they delay, the religious may seek the permission directly from the Congregation.

    In the meantime, you may request permission to work and live outside the community for a year, a permission which the Director General can grant with the stroke of a pen.

  6. Are you speaking with other Legionaries who've left?

  7. Father -

    Bully for you!

    As you think through all of this, you should consider this question:

    Did the legion ever have your best interests in mind? Ever?


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