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I was part of a cult. Actually, that’s not entirely true because my parents were the only ones who took it all seriously. What’s more, the cult never really thought of me as a good member. They did not take me under their much needed wing of compassion and longing. Why? Because, I never acted in the way that they saw fit. So much so that I was eventually expelled from their schools, ostracized from the community, and basically blacklisted.
Before I get any further into this essay, I think it’s important to provide some background information of the cult. Firstly, it was founded as the Society of Saint Pious X (SSPX) in 1970 by Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre, who I do not believe was a cult leader. In fact, I think he was only an overzealous archbishop. Which is supported by his “breaking away” from The Vatican in 1988, not because he wanted to become a cult leader, but I think because he thought it was his only option.
He was actually excommunicated when he disobeyed papal orders. Which directed him not to consecrate four bishops. By ignoring these orders and consecrating the bishops anyways, Lefebvre knowingly had himself and the newly ordained bishops excommunicated. Three years later Lefebvre had died and the SSPX was in tumult. It begin a difficult process of falling apart into many different varieties of religious cults. Also, what was left of the SSPX grew more and more cultish in direct proportion to the disillusionment. What’s left today is not a conventional cult. Depending on each church most of them are what I call sub cults. Each placing the pastor in charge as the leader of that specific church.
Growing up, I didn’t realize that I was part of something strange. I believed, we were normal and everybody else was strange. ...

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...ildren should be raised and punished.
The SSPX was the only church anyone ever needed, elitist and polarized from society. With that status they were able to justify everything that they did. All members would be constantly pressured to volunteer and bring in new members. Those that did this were exalted and hailed as heroes. There was no life outside of the church.
In conclusion, being a part of that cult has taught me a great deal. Now, I am able to understand people better and also much more aware of lies that society perpetrates. I believe that most any group will knowingly or unwittingly use cult techniques. Fr. Stanich has given me a great deal to think about. He was a classic narcissist and one of the vainest people I have ever known. But, I am now able to understand much more about persuasive rhetoric and the phony lies that are told to control people.
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