Legionaries of Christ to ordain 32 new priests in 2023

By Ana Paula Morales for CNA


null / Credit: Father Luis Ángel Espinosa, LC/Cathopic

ACI Prensa Staff, Mar 19, 2023 / 08:00 am (CNA).

In 2023 the Legionaries of Christ religious order will provide 32 new priests for service to the Church. Twenty-nine of them will be ordained in Rome in the papal basilica of St. Mary Major on April 29 by Cardinal Fernando Vérguez, president of the Governorate of the State of Vatican City.

The other three will receive priestly ordination at different times of the year.

The soon-to-be new priests of the Legionaries of Christ come from Germany, Colombia, Chile, South Korea, Canada, Brazil, El Salvador, Spain, the United States, Italy, Mexico, and Venezuela.

The April 29 ordination in Rome can be viewed live on the congregation’s website at 10 a.m. Rome time.

Speaking with ACI Prensa, CNA’s Spanish-language news partner, Miguel Esponda Sada, a seminarian of the Legionaries of Christ who will be ordained a priest this year, said that “to be a priest is to be a sign and living presence of Jesus Christ among men; it makes the world see the incarnate love of God.”

A priest, he continued, is “taken from among men, is chosen and consecrated to be mediator and bridge between God the Father and men.”

“He knows well and makes people’s sufferings and hopes his own; he knows well the heart of God and makes it his own,” Esponda said.

In a testimony posted on the Legionaries of Christ website, Pablo Lorenzo-Penalva, another of the seminarians who will receive priestly ordination this year, asked Catholics to say a Hail Mary “for all priests, especially for those of us who are going to be ordained, so that we never forget that the most effective way to come to Jesus is through his mother, Mary.”

Seminarian Carlos Javier Ruiz commented: “My life was planned since I was little. But how great is God who saves us even from our plans. When he calls, if we respond to him, nothing is ever the same.”

This story was first published by ACI Prensa, CNA’s Spanish-language news partner. It has been translated and adapted by CNA.

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  1. The Legionaires should have been disbanded when it became known that their founder was a demonic pedophile rapist. I have zero respect for this order and it’s continued existence, while the Franciscans of the Immaculate and Knights of Malta are deliberately destroyed, is an indictment of the corruption of the Bergoglian Pontificate.

  2. I agree that the Legionaries of Christ and its lay branch Regnum Christi should no longer exist. But this is not the fault of Pope Francis. It was during the papacy of Benedict XVI when he finally disciplined and sent to perpetual retreat its founder for sex abuses, that he allowed its restructuring and continued existence. Moreover, it was during the papacy of John Paul II that the Legionaries of Christ flourished due to his preferential friendship with its founder and serial sex offender Marcial Maciel Degollado. The saint pope ignored and turned a blind eye to the growing number of reports of the founder’s sex abuse: siring children with different women and sexually abusing his own priests and seminarians. John Paul II even called Degollado a “model of heroic priesthood.”

    • Our priest & entire parish were fooled & deceived by a terrible, serial pedophile. Everyone in our community believed the offender to be a decent, generous, Christian family man, church & school volunteer, etc. Wherever there was a volunteer opportunity you’d see this individual & his wife helping out.

      Good people look for the good in others, not the bad or pathological. In the case of sexual perverts, it can take one to know one. Or alternatively, it can take someone who has prosecuted child molesters to see the behavior signs. The rest of us are generally clueless.
      JPII not recognizing the signs of perversity in others to me is reassuring.

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