Becoming a Legionary
A young man who feels called to be a Legionary of Christ is one who has an urgent desire to work for Christ in his mission of spreading the gospel to every corner of society, who desires to make Christ better known and loved, and who resonates with the charism of Regnum Christi.
Cultivating an intimate and personal relationship with Christ through the sacraments and confession, personal prayer, and Eucharistic adoration are essential for a man to discern. He is also welcome to pay a visit to the Legionary house of formation in Cheshire, Connecticut on any weekend that works best for him, or especially during any of the vocational retreats offered there throughout the year. If he has not yet personally spoken with a Legionary of Christ, that would be a great place to start his initial inquiry!
The formation program of the Legionaries of Christ is not for the faint of heart. It is long and demanding, it is a deeply fulfilling way of life – it is the same lifestyle as Christ himself who was poor, chaste, and obedient.
Criteria for applying to the Legionaries of Christ
- Applicants for the Legionaries of Christ should generally be between the ages of 18 and 30.
- Candidates should be in good physical and psychological health.
- Any outstanding debt must be paid off before entering the novitiate.
If the young man has recently had a conversion experience, it is prudent that he wait between one and two years before joining the aspirancy program or entering the novitiate.
If the man desires to take the next step of commitment and is open to the possibility of entering the candidacy program during the upcoming summer, he should consider becoming an Aspirant. The Aspirancy is a time to deepen in the understanding of the charism of the Legionaries of Christ and Regnum Christi alongside other Aspirants.
As an Aspirant, he commits himself to regular spiritual direction, a more serious prayer and sacramental life, involvement in some type of apostolate (preferably with Regnum Christi), and participates in periodic calls with novices. Ideally, the Aspirancy begins during a visit to the Legionaries’ house of formation in Cheshire, Connecticut.
- High school seniors (with parental permission)
- University seniors and select undergraduates
- Men working off financial debt
- Men wanting to experience the Legion and Regnum Christi charism, community, and apostolate
- Men needing time and guidance to strengthen certain habits and form virtues
- International applicants needing to become familiar with American culture and society
- Men taking firm initial steps before Candidacy
Before entering the novitiate, the man attends a two-month program during the summer known as Candidacy. If the man and the Vocation Director agree, he may request an application for the Candidacy. The application process includes an in-depth interview (If not already done before becoming an aspirant), letters of recommendation, a criminal background check and medical exams.
During the Candidacy, a man lives in community with other candidates – under the direction of the candidacy director – at the Legionaries’ house of formation in Cheshire, Connecticut. There, he will begin to live the life of a Legionary, which includes: following a disciplined lifestyle following a schedule, living community life, formation talks/courses, sports, and apostolate. The candidate begins to learn the art of prayer through daily directed mental prayer, daily Mass and Eucharistic adoration, morning and night prayers in community, spiritual reading and retreats. The goal of the candidacy is to discern, both on the part of the candidate and the part of the candidacy director, whether God seems to be calling the man to follow him as a Legionary of Christ. Before entering the novitiate, he will do a complete psychological exam and have an interview with the director of Novices.