Susan’s Story

This is one of a thirty part exposé on the Children of the Legion. This group of women, then girls, in the Regnum Christi, share their stories of abuse, neglect and the aftermath of being children in the Regnum Christi. For a complete list of stories to date, view Children of the Legion.


I am among those who did not suffer obvious ill at the PC. I, unlike many, love rigorous schedules and often just suck up and accept arbitrary regulations. I am a stoic by nature, to a fault. So, I did not have the traumatic experiences that others had of feeling pressured, having nightmares, etc. You might say that I was “cut-out” for the PC. Looking back and reflecting, however, I think my experience shows even more so how it was flawed at its foundations and would prove damaging to anyone.

Seguir leyendo Susan’s Story

Sheila’s Story, Part X

This is one of a thirty part exposé on the Children of the Legion. This group of women, then girls, in the Regnum Christi, share their stories of abuse, neglect and the aftermath of being children in the Regnum Christi. For a complete list of stories to date, view Children of the Legion.


The next year and a half I spent going through my old experiences and actually letting myself question and doubt them.  I had, in the past, googled “Legionaries of Christ” to try to find my favorite meditation pages… only to find that several of the top ten links were anti-Legion websites.  At the time I had been horrified to find out that “we had so many enemies.”  It seemed then that it would be a sin of doubt to click on those links.  But now, with RC no longer having any hold on me, I went back and found all those sites.  I read testimony after testimony on the various forums I found.  And it all made so much sense.  Seguir leyendo Sheila’s Story, Part X

Sheila’s Story, Part IX

This is one of a thirty part exposé on the Children of the Legion. This group of women, then girls, in the Regnum Christi, share their stories of abuse, neglect and the aftermath of being children in the Regnum Christi. For a complete list of stories to date, view Children of the Legion.


I arrived at college as avid an RC member as ever.  My roommate was RC also, and we intended to support each other.  That was tested right away, as we found out that our college had banned Regnum Christi from campus and would not allow Legionary priests on campus either.  (At the time this was very puzzling to me.  Who could possibly object to RC, especially on  our nearest RC center was hours away.  And worst of all, when we called the consecrated there and asked if they would be willing to come to our area ever, they told us, “Start a team yourselves.  Seguir leyendo Sheila’s Story, Part IX

Sheila’s Story, Part VIII

This is one of a thirty part exposé on the Children of the Legion. This group of women, then girls, in the Regnum Christi, share their stories of abuse, neglect and the aftermath of being children in the Regnum Christi. For a complete list of stories to date, view Children of the Legion.


I woke up the next morning a different person.  I had left home as bubbly, happy, irrepressible, irresponsible 14-year-old.  I came back a much older, sadder, more serious, and shyer 16-year-old.  I was coming back to a different family, too — I now had a younger brother.  Everything seemed weird and different — like it wasn’t at all the family I had left, but a new family I was going to have to adjust to.

I kept up all my prayer commitments and did more than required.  I also continued wearing only skirts and never pants.  Seguir leyendo Sheila’s Story, Part VIII

Sheila’s Story, Part VII

This is one of a thirty part exposé on the Children of the Legion. This group of women, then girls, in the Regnum Christi, share their stories of abuse, neglect and the aftermath of being children in the Regnum Christi. For a complete list of stories to date, view Children of the Legion.


Remember Juanita, the consecrated woman who was always pestering me at sports? Well, she was also my housework supervisor. It was her job to come into the conference room, which I cleaned every day, and nag me to work faster. Since I took considerable pride in my work and knew I did a good job, it drove me crazy. One day, I just lost it. I was tired of humbly apologizing for not doing a better job when I WAS doing a good job, as I saw it. Seguir leyendo Sheila’s Story, Part VII

Sheila’s Story, Part VI

This is one of a thirty part exposé on the Children of the Legion. This group of women, then girls, in the Regnum Christi, share their stories of abuse, neglect and the aftermath of being children in the Regnum Christi. For a complete list of stories to date, view Children of the Legion.


I left you all on a cliffhanger at the end of Part V for quite a long time … sorry about that.

Changes were pretty frequent during those years. The school was still relatively new — I think less than ten years old — and we were still working out what the rules would be. So we would be called into the conference room and told, “Spiritual direction is now spiritual guidance,” or “Section I and Section II are now called ECYD Section and Regnum Christi Section,” or “Your ‘face-to-face’ is now your ‘PC Prospect.'” Seguir leyendo Sheila’s Story, Part VI

Sheila’s Story, Part V

This is one of a thirty part exposé on the Children of the Legion. This group of women, then girls, in the Regnum Christi, share their stories of abuse, neglect and the aftermath of being children in the Regnum Christi. For a complete list of stories to date, view Children of the Legion.


I ended Part IV in my spiritual director Sally’s office. (Her name is not really Sally.)

I tried to tell her about my giant conversion experience and how I was really committed to Regnum Christi now and that I was sure I had a vocation. She wasn’t really interested. She told me that it was way too soon to worry about whether or not I had a vocation.

Seguir leyendo Sheila’s Story, Part V

Sheila’s Story, Part IV

This is one of a thirty part exposé on the Children of the Legion. This group of women, then girls, in the Regnum Christi, share their stories of abuse, neglect and the aftermath of being children in the Regnum Christi. For a complete list of stories to date, view Children of the Legion.


Like I said at the end of Part III, the cognitive dissonance was beginning to get to me. I had a lot of little sneaky things I did, as I said before — from mentally composing fanfiction during “spiritual reading,” to coming up with objections in my head to everything I learned during apostolic methodology. But I started to feel tired of fighting.

It didn’t help that we were constantly hearing about “giving 100%,” “holding nothing back from God,” “being who we were meant to be,” and so forth. Seguir leyendo Sheila’s Story, Part IV

Sheila’s Story, Part III

This is one of a thirty part exposé on the Children of the Legion. This group of women, then girls, in the Regnum Christi, share their stories of abuse, neglect and the aftermath of being children in the Regnum Christi. For a complete list of stories to date, view Children of the Legion.


In the fall of 2000, I began my ninth grade year as a “precandidate” (“PC”). I understood perfectly that I was there to discern my vocation: it was like Junior Nuns or something. A lot of the other girls didn’t see it that way at all: it was just a place you go when you’re serious about your faith, and some people get consecrated at the end.

Right at the beginning of the year, we had an orientation for several days where we learned all the rules we hadn’t been told in the summer program. Seguir leyendo Sheila’s Story, Part III

Sheila’s Story, Part II

This is one of a thirty part exposé on the Children of the Legion. This group of women, then girls, in the Regnum Christi, share their stories of abuse, neglect and the aftermath of being children in the Regnum Christi. For a complete list of stories to date, view Children of the Legion.


I arrived in Rhode Island for the summer program and found it just as I’d expected it — like a much bigger version of the camps and retreats I’d enjoyed. Everyone was really nice, and the schedule was nonstop fun.

There was a little bump the first week where I didn’t think to call home and my mom kept calling me. But instead of getting me, they would give me these little phone messages that said she had called. I didn’t know what I was supposed to do about them so I did what I generally did about homework assignments I didn’t understand or instructions I couldn’t follow … kept quiet and hoped the problem would solve itself. Seguir leyendo Sheila’s Story, Part II