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Trusting in the Guidance of God and the Church
Cardinal De Paolis celebrates General Chapter opening Mass

Cardinal Velasio De Paolis homily
Cardinal Velasio De Paolis addresses the Legion of Christ during the opening Mass of the General Chapter.

The opening Mass for the Extraordinary General Chapter of the Legionaries of Christ was held January 8, 2014, at 6:30 pm (CET) in the chapel of the Legion’s Center of Higher Studies, located in Rome.  General Chapter formal discussions begin today, January 9.

Cardinal Velasio De Paolis presided over the Mass and delivered the homily, which can be read in its entirety here.  Sixty of the chapter fathers concelebrated, along with many other Legionary priests. 

The Mass was the culminating event to end the novena to the Holy Spirit that all Legionaries participated in, as well as an 8-day silent retreat in which the chapter fathers sought light and guidance from God for this important step in the life of the Legion and Regnum Christi. 

Afterwards, the Cardinal invited the Legionaries of Christ to look to the future trusting in the guidance of God and the Church: “The same Lord who has accomplished this work in you is the guarantor who will accompany you even further along the path you are called to follow.  What the Lord has done during this time of preparation is like the memory to which you are called to return, so as to regain confidence, serenity and hope: hope in the Lord who has preserved your vocation; hope in the Legion, which, thanks to you, presents itself to this chapter with new strength and new horizons; and hope in the Church, which has accompanied you, particularly through Pope Benedict XVI—who, in the most tragic moment
The General Chapter Mass
in your history, has had confidence in you and has believed in your capacity for renewal and faithfulness to the Lord—and in the current Supreme Pontiff Pope Francis—who wanted to be present at this important moment in your history.”

The two specific tasks of the General Chapter will be to approve the draft of the Legion’s constitutions and to elect a new government for the Legion.  In his homily, Cardinal De Paolis addressed each of these tasks. 

Regarding the approval of the constitutions, he said: “The constitutions that you give yourselves will therefore not be simply a code of laws that unites you only externally in discipline, but the text will be an expression of a common vocation, a common ideal, a common mission, a common path to healing, an impulse to strive in common striving for the fulfillment of God’s plan for the congregation and for each of you, for the glory of God and service to the Church and to the Legion.” 
Regarding the election of the new superiors, the Cardinal said: “The primary task, in fact, of the superiors is to preserve and promote the Institute’s charism; the charism is only guaranteed when authority is exercised as service, in the spirit of the Gospel and in fidelity to the norms of the Church.  It is a point which should always be given special attention, especially for you, who have a history of suffering in this regard. It is important not to forget that. 

“And this
Cardinal Velasio DePaolis at the Consecration
has been a topic about which the new constitutional text has been careful and vigilant.  However, as you know, well-made laws are important, but not enough, if there is not a new spirit.  And it is this new spirit that you are called to foster and cultivate inside of you when you are called upon to give yourselves new superiors.  You really have to have a new heart, both on the part of those electing and those elected.”

To stay up-to-date on the events of the General Chapter, go to the website:

Photos of the Mass are available here:



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