A Critical Look at the Neocatechumenal Way

Cult or Sect?

The Initial Phase of Catechesis

Sacramental Issues

  • Kiko’s Tabernacles – Do these tabernacles indicate Kiko’s true beliefs regarding the Eucharist?
  • Kiko’s Passover Problem, Part I – If Kiko is wrong about the celebration of the Passover in first century Palestine, how could he be right about the worship of the first century Christians?
  • Kiko’s Passover Problem, Part II – Wherein Kiko’s teaching is found to contradict that of four Doctors of the Church.
  • Taking a red pen to heresy – An example of a grave error about the Eucharist that was removed from the original Catechetical Directory prior to its “approval”.

The Scrutinies

The Traditio Symboli stage

Rene Girard and the Neocatechumenal Way

Kiko’s Eschatology

Kiko’s “New Aesthetic”

The Way in Asia

Other Problems and Practices

Other Recent Posts

Tags:  Camino Neocatecumenal, Cammino Neocatecumenale, problems, problemas, Archbishop Anthony Apuron

46 thoughts on “A Critical Look at the Neocatechumenal Way”

  1. Is it a testing ground for this Neocatechumenal at the Cathedral?
    Is the Vatican/Pope aware of this Bishop’s behavior and attempts to change our Scripted Religion into a Cult like religion?
    This one of the very few Sacred things..that mean soo much to the indigenous people here..that has been passed on from several generations now..and you want to change all that because you can?
    Do you know our people?
    yeah..I didn’t think you did..but hey..glad you found a new hobby Apuron..but the chamorru people? We just want to keep it as it is..

    1. Mr. Omokhua, I am sure that it is difficult for you to see since you are deeply enmeshed in the sect, but the Catholics on Guam are opening their eyes to the deeply sectarian nature of “the Way”. Please respond directly to specific criticisms you see here. Thank you.

        1. Simon, people are joining without being told of the the terrible things that lie ahead. And leaving is made quite difficult for many.

          1. Hello Chuck,

            You are exactly right in your reply here. And I want to talk to you more about this “phenomenon” of the Neocatechumenal Way in today’s Catholic Church.

            The terrible things that lie ahead for many may not be intended maliciously by anyone in this group; yet, the collateral damage of these terrible things is very real thing for people like me.

            I’ve been very familiar with “The Way” and Kiko for over 40 years now, and your observations on both of them ring so very true, and I’d like to talk to you more about it.

            If you’re reading this, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me. Peace.

    2. yes Simon . It is. I was in it for 13 years maybe more. My life was kept so insanely occupied that there was no time ever for anything or anyone else …in other words you are slowly seperated from family and friends not in the NCW. This is typical cult behaviour. Manipulation, threats and fear are tools used to keep people within the confines of the group. You are made to feel and told often till you actually believe that you are ‘nothing but shit’ .The name of the game is EGO, emotions and feelings are played with in order to keep you in . I could give hundereds of examples personal and otherwise but I was in it and it is a cult and very dangerous,

      1. Yes.

        What you said is totally true according to my experience with this “charism” over the last 40 years with my family. Please don’t hesitate to reach out to me if you read this 4 years later.

        I have a lot to say about this group. And Kiko. And the whole cycle of unintended abuse that turned me off to this thing in the first place. – JMS

        1. Hello Joshua, I was also born and raised inside The Way, I’m a young adult now and in the process of leaving my community. I would like to get in contact with you if that’s is okay.

  2. “Por sus frutos los conoceréis” Nos ha dicho el Señor. y gracias a la IGLESIA, y a través de este Camino concreto de FE, el CAMINO NEOCATECUMENAL, damos fe y testimoniamos de que el Señor ha obrado en nuestras vidas y ha hecho grandes cosas. Esto es lo más importante… Tantos dones y gracias recibidas … es más que suficiente para alabar, bendecir y dar gracias al Señor por su fidelidad, por su Misericordia, y su AMOR manifestado gratuitamente en cada uno de nosotros.. (FAMILIA VANEGAS CALDERÓN compuesta de 10 hijos y 40 años de Camino)

    1. Santiago, estamos cosechando los frutos amargos del Camino Neocatecumenal aquí en Guam. Ver estas historias de un nuevo presbítero Neocatecumenal que fue encontrado realizando sexo oral a una niña en su parroquia.

  3. La posibilidad de convertirnos y acoger su Palabra, el Señor nos lo concede a cada uno. Somos libres de responder y escoger el Camino del Bien, o el Camino del Mal, y cada uno de nosotros es el responsable absoluto de todas las acciones que cometamos, ante Dios y la Sociedad… Este pobre hermano no ha querido convertirse y ha caído en desgracia. Lamentable y repudiable por cierto la acción que cometió. Que Dios tenga misericordia y se apiade de este hermano. El SEÑOR es el único y soberano juez.

    1. …Lamentable y repudiable por cierto la acción que cometió….

      English translation: “…Indeed it is a regrettable and condemnable action that he has committed…”

      It sounds like you are the one who is judging, Santiago! Why don’t you counter my arguments with facts?

  4. I’ve been a forced member of this cult for 10 years. My parents became members since i was a baby. I grew around it and I’ve seen how they play with the lives of this people how they control their thoughts.

    I’ve seen my family change specially my mother and sister, they have no friends and no life outside “the way” they are obsessed with “the way” in a very scary and irritating way. My mother even blackmails me into going. The weak minds get lost in “the way” they are twisted and they always gather and talk about Kiko, they truly put this man on pedestal.

    All the marriages complain about their spouses they humiliate each other at the convivence I see how they suffer and how they still believe deeply that they’re each others crosses bound to make each other suffer to gain salvation because that’s what kiko teaches about your own Cross, another terrible misconception and lie.

      1. Hi Chuck, my family is keeping me from leaving once I move out of my parents house I won’t get near them. I live in San Pedro sula, Homduras; it was considered the most dangerous city in the world, so it’s not very easy to just move out when you already have a very safe place to live, thank God. So as much as I despise the way I’m stuck there for some months, it won’t be too long.

        I must add I don’t consider myself part of it. On my last convivence the leader of the community (it’s called a “responsable” in Spanish) called me out for not caring about it, using my phone and taking his peace away.

        Sorry if I write too much, there’s a lot for me to say about it, I’ve seen and heard so much over this 10 years, the way hasn’t had it very easy in my church, a couple of priests don’t like it 2 of them told me that directly.
        I’d love to answer any questions if any.

        1. Hola Lisa, yo soy David. Soy de San Salvador y mi caso es muy parecido al tuyo. Mis padres me han obligado a ir al camino desde pequeno. Tengo 15 años y ahora me considero agnostico. El problema es que los catequistas de mis padres los tienen dominados mentalmente.

          1. Translation: Hi Lisa, I’m David. I am from San Salvador and my case is very similar to yours. My parents forced me to go in the Way from the time I was small. I have 15 years and now consider myself agnostic. The problem is that catechists of my parents have dominated us mentally.

        2. Yes,when I was a part of this along with my family, the community got kicked out of the church because the priests there didn’t like it. We had to find a different church to attend.

          1. Mine too.
            The catechists said we were being “persecuted”.

            At age 12 when it happened, I remember thinking… no, the community isn’t being a part of the regular parish and it’s bugging people… including the priests! That’s why we’re getting kicked out. Geez! So embarrassing. And their willing ignorance of that fact even more so. Astonshing for me ’til this day.

    1. I left too and no one contacted me EVER once I finally left for good . This is part fo the mind control. You are made to be dependant on the ncw and are cut off from everything else in your previous life, so two things happen when you leave. 1. First you get tracked down and told how damned your life can be if you leave ….this was MY experience the first time ….I was told my kids would become gay!!! Among other things. I have also heard how another family who left were visited and the husband was offered a ‘better role’ in the community and told he ‘could go far’ if he stayed ! The second time when we left for good we were totally ignored no one called or cared or asked how we were or even why we left …maybe they knew one of my kids had been sexually abused by one of thier Priests and they decided to not chase us. It was just as hurtful we felt alone and depressed and couldnt understand why these people our so called ‘brothers and sisters’ who knew ALL our intimate secrets would close off from us. I have known people who have left but they have been strong enough to just walk away without any concern …..also these have mostly been single people …think about it the ncw wants to keep families not so much singles its a numbers thing….fodder for next gen of ncw!

  5. If you were a true Catholic Christian you would be silent and not be slandering and gossiping about others. When Jesus was lead by his own people (Jews) to his slaughter he never said a word.
    It is clear that you feel superior over the people who walk in the Way and it is clear that the devil has also blinded you with the same attitudes the Jews had about Jesus.

    Praying for you all to get in touch with Lord through reading his Gospels and other reading from the Bible.

    1. You are quite wrong, Chris. Christians are not to be silent in the face of corruption and abuse. If they were, then the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. should have stayed home. Kiko deforms the Gospel in his teaching, “Do not resist evil”. Read more.

  6. Be very careful with this CULT. They do psychological tricks to make you their slave. You end up being controlled by this CULT. My parents fell for it and now belong to this CULT. The major problem here is that they go out very week door to door trying to get more people into this CULT. Be careful, these people are trained to worship the CULT and to spread the word.

  7. I was in a relationship with a man -( a member of NCW) for 8 years, living together for 3 yrs. We got to know each other 17 years ago in London, while doing our studies. That time he was a regular catholic boy. But since he started to do cammino he has changed, I have seen all the mentioned above in his life- separating from friends, not having time for anything else only their meeting, separating from myself as I refused to join. We split up, his words were that he can not marry the love of his life because I wouldn’t do the cammino and join the community. I still get his messages how much he is in love with me and how painful it is not to be together any longer. God forbid any of my friends or mambers of my family ever have to make such a decision, cos it breaks you beyond repair!

  8. Before I talk about Kiko’s cult, I’d like to introduce myself. I’m Clement Kim, I’m currently a forced member of the Neocathechumenal way, and I’m ashamed to say that my parents are proud members of this cult. Anyways, I’m gonna talk about this cult.

    My parents have been members since I was about 5 or 7 years old, and they forced me to join in 2015. I’ve always known there was something wrong with the Neocathechumenal way after thinking it was a good organization almost all my life (my parents brainwashed me that time), and this website that I’m typing this on shows it all, and it makes a lot of sense. Now let me talk about what makes the Neocatechumenal way an obvious cult. I want to join another Catholic organization that I’ve looked into, but my cult-member parents would not allow me to join because they think it’s an “ultra conservative cult”, they would have long talks with me about the Catholic organization and try to lecture me into thinking it is bad, and whenever they do have those long talks, they always mention the Neocatechumenal way and tell me that the cult is better than the Catholic organization I want to join. The only thing I hear and see when my parents do that is them with a sly grin and giving me a “come here” hand gesture and saying “Come on, son, join the dark side, we’re not that bad, they are the bad ones, not the Neocatechumenal way”. Trust me, there is much more.

    Every single meeting with the catechists (convivences, Eucharist celebrations, and more), we are given a Bible verse which is read to us by a microphone by catechist, itinerant, or a responsible, and then they tell us how we do not follow that verse and we are bad people, basically that’s when they try to put guilt in us, and make us feel like garbage, and they succeed at it, and often enough, they use that verse to remark Kiko and how he’s a good follower of that verse. It’s always very obvious to me that they are putting him on a high pedestal on those times, but the other members fall for it, and now they’re all saying that he is a prophet and that he and Carmen are gonna make it to Saint Hood! Not to mention, the members are always talking about Kiko and how much of a great man he is whenever they’re on breaks.

    Also, after every one of those meetings, they pass bags around for people to put money in, and encourage us to put lots of money in it. I was forced by my parents to put money in the bag several times, and I’m upset that I was forced to donate to the cult. The catechist also once told us in these exact words “If you put little money in the bag for food on the way home or something–your food is gonna taste like crap, just put lots of money in and get something cheap on the way like a Hot Dog or something because you know what? It’s gonna be the best hot dog you’ve ever tasted in your life because you know that the hot dog was given to you by God”.

    I wish my parents would just stop sucking in lies from the Neocatechumenal way. The scary thing about this cult was how they trained the minds of my parents that if they left the Neocatechumenal way, then they might as well go to hell, because they feel like they left their only path to Heaven. Do you see how this cult is very clever at getting people to stay? For God’s sake my parents think they might as well go to hell if they leave now! If that’s not cult-like, then I don’t know what it is. Kiko Argüello is a born cult leader, just like Sun Myung Moon, the founder of the Unification Church, or “Moonie” Church.

    All I can say to my parents is that I hope they wake up, and know that they’ve been lied to, and I don’t like seeing my parents being lied to. All I know is that once I’m out of my parents’ house, I’m leaving the Neocatechumenal way, because I’m pretty tired of being in a cult. May God have mercy on Kiko Argüello, and also on his puppet teachers.

  9. This is deeply unsettling. Over a third of young men in formation in my archdiocese mention the Neocatechuminal Way or Redemptoris Mater in their bios. These are the next leaders of the Church – I sincerely hope the divisive language and prescriptions for worship/salvation I read here don’t find their way into the greater Church. More engagement within the community is great, more study of scripture and catechism would be wonderful, but there shouldn’t be hidden (and framed as superior) “truths” available to a select few. From what I understand, this smacks of Calvinism, to be totally honest.

    1. Kiko Arguello and Carmen Hernandez founded a movement within the Catholic Church called the Neocatechumenal Way in the sixties. This movement is now a “sect” within the Church, and has its own doctrine and leadership hierarchy.

      Carmen and Kiko never married and to my knowledge, never had a romantic relationship with each other. A strong cult of personality surrounds Kiko Arguello. Most members of the sect consider him to be a living saint and prophet. Only his art and music are allowed in the sect’s worship and liturgy.

      Carmen died last year, and despite the sect’s tradition of discouraging prayer for miracles, the sect is trying its utmost to get Carmen canonized or declared a saint by the Catholic Church. This would require at least two bona fide miracles attributed to her intercession.

  10. Whoever is in the Neocathechumenal way, LEAVE NOW. This is not the “Way” and they have no right to call themselves it. It is nothing but a cult. If you’ve seen what I, other members, and members of the clergy have been talking about, you’ll see. After waking up, I’ve seen how much of a robot I’ve been.

  11. The Way changed my life for the better and going for the best. I was not forced to join the community nor am I being controlled by it. It has good intentions just like any other well-meaning church institutions. Who composes all these institutions are sometimes the ones who, because of being mere humans, cause the institutions all the wrong impressions and negativities thrown their way. But, not surprising, since the devil can use anybody at all cost to block the road to the Lord. In my case, The Way serves me well and strongly leads me to God. It’s all that matters. 🙂

    1. Actually, Elsie, that not all that matters. The truth matters, and the Way distorts the truth quite often. And while you’ll probably reply that they Way is approved by the Popes, please know that the Holy See has only approved the Statute of the Way, not each and every teaching.

  12. The neocatecnumenal way destroyed my childhood parish plain and simple. It is a vicious beast that victimized and brainwashed it’s members, most of whom are vulnerable & prone to be sucked into this cult. It preys on people’s weak points & aggrandizes that fascist madman Kokomo Aguilera to the point beyond hero worship. If this thing tries to get it’s tentacles into you, run…don’t walk away…from it & thank God for letting you get away from it’s pernicious, twisted, mind controlling influence. More on this at a future time.

  13. Thank you for this website. I grew up in the NCW and was involved in some capacity or another for 30+ years. My parents are longtime catechists and I’ve seen the relationship between them and my siblings deteriorate as they choose the NCW community over family every time, espousing the language of blind obedience as true faith and silencing any criticism. This has only gotten worse during Covid when catechists have gone around diocesan protocols, meeting in secret, even in groups well into the hundreds, telling members to not speak up if they get sick, and strong arming members into not getting vaccinated. I have family on mission around the world and I know that so many struggle with the idea of leaving when they’ve given up their entire livelihoods for this “new evangelization.” Every one of your articles is on the nose about the culture of secrecy and brainwashing (and tbh, I find Kiko’s aesthetic nauseatingly juvenile). I only hope that those struggling with the decision to leave come across these pages and recognize their choice is valid and true. Contrary to how the NCW twists the Gospel, it does not mean you have left the Catholic Church or condemned yourself to Hell.

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