For this reason, the title of the article has been altered.
I can tell you from our own sad personal experience that – at least in our case in [name of State] our homeschooling group was hijacked by people from TORCH. These are the same people who participate in Regnum Christi and who I believe have taken control nationally of NACHE (this is apparently why Seton Home School has a separate conference in the DC area each summer). see editor’s note above
We were led to believe this group was independent and a good support organization for home schoolers. However, the tactics used to get mothers to vote their way were certainly not Christian nor in the true spirit of Catholic fellowship. We found our group torn in two – and have since gone our separate ways. Unfortunately, deception was employed to drive a wedge between some mothers who were unaware of the unspoken agenda of the TORCH network – namely control of ideas, control of worship and control of money. Dues were instituted where none existed before. Previously the loose leadership group of 3 mothers and a dozen advisors, those who attended monthly mother’s meetings, employed free will offerings. We had no “Titled” leaders – only ad hoc volunteers. They wanted to formalize the organization – President, Treasurer, Secretary, etc. We wanted to avoid cumbersome paperwork that would sap valuable time away from mothers who need to be teaching and nurturing their children – not wasting their time on administration – which no one saw a need for.
We were very saddened that many who trusted our leaders – one of these is my wife – were duped and lost a bit of trust in the organization. We apologized for the failure to foresee the events that unfolded. We now know – from others around the country that this same scenario was played out before our coup and afterwards as well. The same tactics are employed – “we need to get organized, we need to charge dues to support our activities, we need to connect with a national network, we need a newsletter, we need to be directed by others, go to retreats and prayer groups led by TORCH leaders who are trained “(by Regnum Christi/Legionaries) and so on.
I suggest anyone facing this kind of proposal look at the TORCH website, understand their connections with other apostolic movements and comprehend the ramifications of changing or forming this kind of Home schooling support group before joining. The stated caveat for those considering membership in such a group is – “if you don’t pay the dues, you can’t come to the meetings, vote on issues, receive the newsletter, etc. “- we never excluded anyone who did not contribute to our free will offering collections either for paucity of income or other reasons. We also welcome non-Catholics and those families who were sending their children to private, public or diocesan schools who wish to learn more about the faith – this seemed to be a stumbling block for the TORCH group.
We are still feeling the hurt from almost 2 years ago when this division struck our peaceful statewide group of home schooling families – about 300 strong. Finally, I’ll say that many in the TORCH organization may not be in league with the leadership and have no ill will regarding their non-TORCH friends. However, the leaders are surely trained to achieve their objective seemingly by any means available – the end justifies their means!! We do not doubt their Faith nor their Orthodoxy, but we do object to their tactics and controlling methods. Similarly, we see the same signs and similar tactics among those in Regnum Christi prayer groups and among the Legion brothers who are actively recruiting our boys at a young age. Those of us who recognize these signs stay clear and generally keep quiet in charity and also fear – that we will be singled out and ridiculed or bad-mouthed for our lack of enthusiasm in their Movement. Again, if we are barriers to their ultimate objectives – we are to be “managed” out of the way. We love all our friends – no matter what group they join. We hold no grudge against anyone, however, we were deceived and will be extremely careful not to let these “leaders of the TORCH movement” lead us astray again!
If anyone has doubts either before or after joining a TORCH group – I suggest getting out and forming or joining a non-TORCH affiliated group that is Catholic or at the very least is a good Christian group that is not anti-Catholic. Non-denominational groups can also be helpful on teaching issues and sometimes can help with non-faith based curricular matters like math and english.
I hope this information is helpful.