May 19, 2006

Vatican Disciplines Legionaries' Founder

The Columbian

May 19, 6:12 AM EDT
Associated Press Writer

VATICAN CITY (AP) -- The Vatican said Friday it had asked the Mexican founder of the conservative order Legionaries of Christ to renounce celebrating public Masses and live a life of "prayer and repentance" following its investigation into allegations he sexually abused seminarians.

the Vatican said Pope Benedict XVI had approved the sanctions against the Rev. Marcial Maciel - making it the first major sexual abuse disciplinary case handled by the pope since he took office last year.

Maciel is one of the most prominent Catholic Church officials the Vatican has disciplined for alleged involvement in child sexual abuse. The case is also significant because Maciel was so warmly regarded by Pope John Paul II.

Benedict's decision to approve the sanctions showed he was not beholden to John Paul's legacy when it comes to dealing with what he once called the "filth" in the Catholic Church - a widely understood criticism of clerical sex abuse.

Posted by kshaw at May 19, 2006 07:05 AM