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Turn to Jesus (Article)

Men´s Consecrated Life
The Consecrated Men of Regnum Christi

Bernard Rangel has chosen to live according to the spirit of poverty, chastity, and obedience – much like any Legionary priest. Yet, Bernard is not a priest. When asked why, he jokes, “It’s the Holy Spirit’s fault.” Bernard felt the Holy Spirit calling him to become a member of the Consecrated Men of Regnum Christi. He explains that “God brings forth new styles of life to serve the Church better during different times of history. As a priest, I couldn’t be studying for a master’s degree in Political Economy as I am now – and I think there is a great need for Catholic politicians.”

With degrees in politics, engineering, and economics, Bernard wants to work with other consecrated and professionals to develop Christian policy research to defend the dignity of the human person. He also wants to “promote social and economic development and to fight poverty in Latin America and around the world.” But as important as these things are, he says one purpose he shares with all consecrated men is “to be a personal witness of eternity.”

Tony MacDonnell, another consecrated man living in Westchester County, New York, is the director of religious education at Sts. Peter and Paul in Mount Vernon, New York. Noting that a minority of U.S. Catholics attend Mass regularly, he wants to “help men and women turn back to
The consecrated men in New York
The consecrated men in New York
the Church, grow their faith, and help people discern their specific vocation, whether that be to married life, priesthood, or consecrated life.” Janet Vasquez, a parishioner, says that Tony encourages everyone in her parish to “build a solid foundation of spirituality and ministry.”

Matthew Reinhardt, a consecrated man for 16 years, is currently studying clinical psychology at Columbia University. He says that one who is consecrated follows Christ radically, being “a witness to the world by saying with our lives that God can fill the deepest aspiration of the human heart.”

These ideas reflect the words of Pope John Paul II who wrote that the primary task of consecrated life is “making Christ present to the world through personal witness” (Vita Consecrata #72). When a man foregoes marriage, devoting his entire life to Christ, this is a valuable witness, especially for Catholics who frequently believe this level of commitment is only for priests and nuns. Because the consecrated layman lives and works among us in society he is often able to serve others in ways that may be more difficult for those living a religious life.

God has called these men to live communally, supporting and holding one another accountable to their commitments. “Consecrated men,” says Fernando Suárez, “dedicate themselves to evangelize and change the culture to create a more Christian society. Love of Christ is the glue that holds us together.” This kind of personal witness is a powerful sign of God’s eternal love.

Reprinted with permission from LeCristo magazine, spring 2012 edition.

Johannes Habsburg, a <i>Regnum Christi</i> member.  He studied communications at Francisco de Vitoria University, Madrid,  and currently works at Hombre Nuevo, a Spanish-language multimedia evangelization center in California.
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