Rómulo Lynch Solano, historian and cuentista
Today, January 3rd, 2041, marks the 100th anniversary of the foundation of the now extinct Catholic religious order, the Legion of Crisis. Less than forty years ago the Legion and its Rice Crispies Lay Movement were prospering under the pontificate of the late John Paul II. Their growth, from twelve twelve-year-olds recruited by then 21-year-old Mexican seminarian, Marshall Assiel, in 1941, was staggering. By the late 1950s the Legion had weathered a Vatican investigation into the murky mysteries of its Founder, the same Fr. Assiel, and spread from Mexico to Spain to Rome to Ireland to the USA and twenty or forty other countries. Large numbers of young men and women continued to flock to its formation centers and thousands gave their money to the cause of Orthodox Catholicism and cute clean-cut celibate priests. Jim Flake, their PR officer with a flair for figures, touted their numbers as 850 priests, 2,500 seminarians of all ages and sizes, and 80,000 lay members: married, single, separated or secretly divorced. The jewel in the Legion's crown was the hundreds of pretty "consecrated women" tucked away in high-heeled residential neighborhoods who manned the order's many elite schools and Front Groups. .
The peace of Legion Camelot was disturbed in 2002 when a group of disaffected former members, relatives and parents, and friends of current members launched a webpage, www.regainnetwork.org, and a discussion group, www.exlegionaries.com, offering a forum for the faithful to be heard. One of the most unique voices was that of my mother, Ellen Lynch de Solano, under the pseudonym Bene Factress. By no means a critic, she was a sample of the thousands of innocent widows responding to the Legion's bi-weekly mass-mailings emanating from Hampton Court. Her love for the Legion padres and the unstinting giving of her meager moneys helped to ease her exile in this strange country. Naïve and heartfelt comments, delivered by her soaring soprano, lightened the often ponderous and pompous postings of others. Sadly her coloratura was silenced in 2008 when www.exlegionaries.com was choked by a Legion legal order. Ironically the retainer was paid for with dollars she had contributed. Bene became part of the collateral damage, and readers slowly became resigned to her absence. Paradoxically, the Legion of Crisis religious order that won the legal battle lost the war when it was unable to withstand a second Vatican Visitation in 2009 and ceased to operate as such three years later.
Today, thirty years later, poetic justice was served when fragments of Bene's articles were uncovered during excavations at the Alexandria City Masonic Temple. Miraculously my mother's voice has survived lawsuit, hurricane and flood, and hopefully will continue to edify future generations. Out of respect for her memory I render it verbatim, unedited, unabridged and unexplained.
|Product dimensions:||5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.42(d)|
About the Author