Thursday, October 16, 2008
INVESTIGATIVE REPORTER reviews "Our Father who art in bed"
INSIDE A PRIESTLY CULT
By Joseph C. Rigert
In my new book **
I noted how Pope John Paul II looked to Ireland to help maintain a strict morality in his church, but at the same time protected Macial Maciel Degollado, founder of the Legionaries of Christ and a notorious sex abuser. The pope did so even though Maciel was accused of sexually abusing more than 20 young seminarians and priests in his religious order. Why? I contended that John Paul didn't want to challenge the man who was churning out many, many priests who shared the pope's conservative beliefs.
But I didn't know why these priests remained so loyal to their corrupted leader. Now I know. As one of those priests, Paul Lennon explains in this book how the "great leader" brainwashed his followers, enforcing silence, isolation and blind obedience. Paul joined the order as an idealistic Irish youth of 17, and remained in it for 23 years, until he could no longer tolerate the repressive culture of the cult and left to rejoin the real world. Rather than describe Paul's experiences--like eight years separated from his family--I urge readers to obtain his book and get an unprecedented look inside the pope's legion.
--Joe Rigert, investigative journalist and author.