Is the Juan 23 Movement approved by the Pope?

My husband attended a Juan 23 movement last weekend. This retreat was held in a secret location where a sponsor dropped them off And took his cell phone. After the retreat , he informed me what happens there is a secret. He can only discuss with other members and their goal to recruit more people. He did explain a few details which involved sleep deprivation , love bombing, and refusing to let participants leave or be by themselves. For example, if you had to go to bathroom a leader had to go with you. There was no time for quiet meditation and they were not allowed outside. On Sunday, I was given a location to pick him up and to have mass together. The mass involved participants upfront and family were not allowed to see them and were in the back. The mass was one hour but kept us 2 more hours with kids not being even able to see their dad because they had to get their flowers and presents at end. Is this approved by pope and what percentages of Catholic Churches in the United States approve this? I am Catholic and concerned that a retreat that is not open to everyone to attend but only a select few and that encourages secrets between spouses is unhealthy. If you combine that with love bombing and sleep deprivation where is the church headed?

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The organization does appear to be legitimate.

Their website lists several USA dioceses in whcih they are present and describes themselves as:

The Movement Juan XXIII is an international association of the faithful, constituted according to the canons of Canon Law of the Catholic Church, and inspired by the principles that emerged from the Second Vatican Council. Born in Puerto Rico, in the Diocese of Arecibo, created under the pontificate of Pope John XXIII, to be “a movement of evangelization” and work mainly by those unchurched and marginalized, also of society. The Movement Juan XXIII does not work for itself, seeks to be leaven and serve as a launching pad; He works out. A movement from its origins goes in search of the forgotten and marginalized, the most distant of those whose problems living in her anonymity of life thinking that the Gospel can not be preached to them and they need someone to find and announce them Jesus Christ: for theirs is the Movement Juan XXIII. In fulfilling this mission, John XXIII Movement has a mystical own, a charisma, a gift that the Lord has entrusted to him, a spirituality of authentic service, framed in Love, dedication and sacrifice and expressed in this option life: “With Christ Everything Nothing Without Christ.”

I am not familiar with the group so I cannot comment if your husband’s experience is typical for the organization as a whole. I do find your description to be a bit concerning and would recommend that it might be helpful to write your concerns to the local bishop.

There are many varied styles of spirituality and organization within the Church and not every style/method is for everyone so no one should ever feel bad for not liking a particular one.

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