Josemaria Escriva. Founder of Opus Dei - Opus Dei founder St Josemaria Escriva, his life day by day, teachings on holiness, apostolate, laity, Catholic Church. Testimonies from Opus Dei members <![CDATA[A brief biography]]> Saint Josemaria Escriva was born in Barbastro, Spain, on 9 January 1902. He was ordained to the priesthood in Saragossa on 28 March 1925. On 2 October 1928, by divine inspiration, he founded Opus Dei. On 26 June 1975, he died unexpectedly in Rome in the room where he worked, after a last affectionate glance at a picture of Our Lady. Opus Dei had by then spread to five continents, with over 60.000 members of 80 nationalities, serving the Church with the same spirit of complete union with the Pope and the Bishops which characterised Saint Josemaría. His Holiness Pope John Paul II canonised the Founder of Opus Dei on 6 October 2002. His feast is celebrated on 26 June. The body of Saint Josemaría rests in the prelatic Church of Our Lady of Peace, Viale Bruno Buozzi 75, Rome.

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<![CDATA[The prelatic church of Opus Dei]]> A place of prayer, housing the mortal remains of Saint Josemaría Escrivá

The mortal remains of Saint Josemaría Escrivá are contained in a casket located beneath the altar of the Church of Our Lady of Peace. Millions of people throughout the world turn to Saint Josemaría’s intercession to gain graces of every kind from God. Many come to the Church of the Prelature to continue their petition or give thanks for graces received through his intercession.

On December 31, 1959, Saint Josemaría celebrated the first Mass in the church of Our Lady of Peace. After Opus Dei was established as a personal prelature, this became the Church of the Prelature. Saint Josemaría’s devotion to our Lady is the reason for the title of this church and the main picture. The crypt of the church holds the Blessed Sacrament Chapel and confessionals. Saint Josemaría preached with untiring zeal on our need for the sacraments of Reconciliation and the Eucharist, given by God to his children as a source of peace and never-ending joy.

The crypt is also the burial-place of Blessed Alvaro del Portillo (1914-1994), Saint Josemaría’s first successor at the head of Opus Dei.

“Holy Mary is the Queen of peace, and thus the Church invokes her. So when your soul or your family are troubled, or things go wrong at work, in society or between nations, cry out to her without ceasing. Call to her by this title: 'Regina pacis, ora pro nobis — Queen of peace, pray for us.' Have you at least tried it when you have lost your calm? You will be surprised at its immediate effect.” Saint Josemaría Escriva

Information and map

Our Lady of Peace Prelatic church of Opus Dei
75, Viale Bruno Buozzi
00197 Rome
Tel. 06-808961

July 11 and 12 will be closed from 14:00 to 17:00.

Open daily 8.30 a.m. – 8.25 p.m. (from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m., use entrance at n. 36 Via di Villa Sacchetti).

Mass times: Daily at 8.30, at 12.00 noon and at 19.30*(During Holy Week the only Mass is at 8.30am).
*There is no Mass at 19.30 during the months of July and August.

Confessions: in English, French, German, Italian, Portuguese and Spanish.
Groups wishing to give advance notice of their visit, and priests wishing to celebrate Mass, please telephone the number given above.

Useful telephone numbers:
Rome Information: 06-0606
Rome Airports: 06-65951 (main switchboard)
Taxis: 06-3570; 06-4994; 06-8822

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<![CDATA[What is Baptism?]]> We are called to live out our Baptism every day as the present reality of our lives. If we manage to follow Jesus and to remain in the Church, despite our limitations and with our weaknesses and our sins, it is precisely because of the Sacrament of Baptism, whereby we have become new creatures and have been clothed in Christ.
Pope Francis, Audience, 8 January 2014.

1. What is Baptism?
Holy Baptism is the basis of the whole Christian life, the gateway to life in the Spirit, and the door which gives access to the other sacraments. Through Baptism we are freed from sin and reborn as sons of God; we become members of Christ, are incorporated into the Church and made sharers in her mission.
Catechism of the Catholic Church, no. 1213

2. Why is it called Baptism?
This sacrament is called Baptism, after the central rite by which it is carried out: to baptize (Greek baptizein) means to “plunge” or “immerse”; the “plunge” into the water symbolizes the catechumen’s burial into Christ’s death, from which he rises up by resurrection with him, as “a new creature” (as St Paul explains to the Corinthians and Galatians, 2 Cor 5:17; Gal 6:15).
This sacrament is also called “the washing of regeneration and renewal by the Holy Spirit,” for it signifies and actually brings about the birth of water and the Spirit without which no one “can enter the kingdom of God” (as the Gospel of St John says, Jn 3:5).
Having received in Baptism the Word, “the true light that enlightens every man,” the person baptized has been “enlightened,” he becomes a “son of light,” indeed, he becomes “light” himself.
Catechism of the Catholic Church, nos. 1214-1216

Contemplating the mystery
Through Baptism we are made bearers of the word of Christ, a word which soothes, enkindles and reassures the wounded conscience. For Our Lord to act in us and for us, we must tell him that we are ready to struggle each day, even though we realise we are feeble and useless, and the heavy burden of our personal shortcomings and weakness weighs down upon us. We must tell him again and again that we trust in him and in his help: if necessary, like Abraham, hoping “against all hope”. Thus we will go about our work with renewed vigour, and we will teach others how to live free from worry, hate, suspicion, ignorance, misunderstandings and pessimism, because God can do everything.
Friends of God, no. 210

There are no second-class Christians, obliged to practise only a “simplified version” of the Gospel. We have all received the same baptism, and although there is a great variety of spiritual gifts and human situations, there is only one Spirit who distributes God’s gifts, only one faith, only one hope, only one love.
And so we can apply to ourselves the question asked by the Apostle: “Do you not know that you are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwells in you?” And we can understand it as an invitation to talk with God in a more personal and direct manner.
Christ is Passing By, no. 134

3. Why was Jesus baptized?
The baptism performed by John the Baptist was a rite of penance and a sign of repentance, but not a sacrament.
Jesus begins his public life after having himself baptized by St John the Baptist in the Jordan.
Our Lord voluntarily submitted himself to the baptism of St John. The Spirit descended then on the Christ, and the Father revealed Jesus as his “beloved Son.”
In his Passover Christ opened to all men the fountain of Baptismal grace. After his resurrection Christ gives this mission to his apostles: “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you.”
The fruit of Baptism, or baptismal grace, is a rich reality that includes forgiveness of original sin and all personal sins, birth into the new life by which man becomes an adoptive son of the Father, a member of Christ and a temple of the Holy Spirit.
Catechism of the Catholic Church, nos. 1223-1225, 1279

Contemplating the mystery
Then Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan to John, to be baptized by him ... and lo, a voice came from heaven, saying, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased” (Mt 3:13,17).
In Baptism, our Father God has taken possession of our lives. He has made us sharers in Christ’s life and sent us the Holy Spirit.
The strength and the power of God light up the face of the earth.

We will set the world ablaze, with the flames of the fire that you, Jesus, came to enkindle on earth! And the light of your truth, our Jesus, will enlighten men’s minds in an endless day.
I can hear you crying out, my King, in your strong and ardent voice: “I have come to bring fire to the earth, and would that it were already enkindled!” And I answer, with my entire being, with all my senses and faculties: “Here I am, because you have called me!”

God has placed an indelible mark on your soul through Baptism: you are a child of God. Child, are you not aflame with the desire to bring all men to love Him?
Holy Rosary, First Mystery of Light

This is the great boldness of the Christian faith: to proclaim the value and dignity of human nature and to affirm that we have been created to achieve the dignity of children of God, through the grace that raises us up to a supernatural level. An incredible boldness it would be, were it not founded on the promise of salvation given us by God the Father, confirmed by the blood of Christ, and reaffirmed and made possible by the constant action of the Holy Spirit.

Together with humility, the realization of the greatness of man’s dignity – and of the overwhelming fact that, by grace, we are made children of God – forms a single attitude. It is not our own forces that save us and give us life; it is the grace of God.
Christ is Passing By, no. 133

4. When did the Church begin to baptize people?
From the very day of Pentecost the Church has celebrated and administered holy Baptism. Indeed St. Peter declares to the crowd astounded by his preaching: “Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit” (Acts 2:38). The apostles and their collaborators offer Baptism to anyone who believed in Jesus: Jews, the God-fearing, pagans. Always, Baptism is seen as connected with faith: “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, you and your household,” St. Paul declared to his jailer in Philippi. And the narrative continues, the jailer “was baptized at once, with all his family.”
According to the Apostle Paul, the believer enters through Baptism into communion with Christ’s death, is buried with him, and rises with him:
“Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life” (Rom 6:3-4).
The baptized have “put on Christ.” Through the Holy Spirit, Baptism is a bath that purifies, justifies, and sanctifies.
Catechism of the Catholic Church, nos. 1226-1227

Contemplating the mystery
I would like you to meditate on a fundamental point, which brings home to us the responsibility we have for our own consciences. Nobody else can choose for us: “men’s supreme dignity lies in this, that they are directed towards the good by themselves, and not by others”. Many of us have inherited the Catholic faith from our parents, and, by the grace of God, supernatural life began in our souls from the moment we were baptised as new-born infants. But we must renew throughout our lives, and every day of our lives, our determination to love God above all things. ‘He is a Christian, a true Christian, who subjects himself to the rule of the one and only Word of God,’ without laying down conditions to his obedience, and being ever ready to resist the devil’s temptings by adopting the same attitude as Christ did: ‘Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and serve none but Him.’
Friends of God, no. 27

An apostle – that is what a Christian is, when he knows that he has been grafted onto Christ, made one with Christ, in baptism. He has been given the capacity to carry on the battle in Christ’s name, through confirmation. He has been called to serve God by his activity in the world, because of the common priesthood of the faithful, which makes him share in some way in the priesthood of Christ. This priesthood – though essentially distinct from the ministerial priesthood – gives him the capacity to take part in the worship of the Church and to help other men in their journey to God, with the witness of his word and his example, through his prayer and work of atonement.

Each of us is to be ipse Christus: Christ himself. He is the one mediator between God and man. And we make ourselves one with him in order to offer all things, with him, to the Father. Our calling to be children of God, in the midst of the world, requires us not only to seek our own personal holiness, but also to go out onto all the ways of the earth, to convert them into roads that will carry souls over all obstacles and lead them to the Lord. As we take part in all temporal activities, as ordinary citizens, we are to become leaven acting on the dough.
Christ is Passing By, no. 120

5. How is Baptism celebrated?
The essential rite of the sacrament […] signifies and actually brings about death to sin and entry into the life of the Most Holy Trinity through configuration to the Paschal mystery of Christ. Baptism is performed in the most expressive way by triple immersion in the baptismal water. However, from ancient times it has also been able to be conferred by pouring the water three times over the candidate’s head.
In the Latin Church this triple infusion is accompanied by the minister’s words: “N., I baptize you in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.” In the Eastern liturgies the catechumen turns toward the East and the priest says: “The servant of God, N., is baptized in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.” At the invocation of each person of the Most Holy Trinity, the priest immerses the candidate in the water and raises him up again.
The anointing with sacred chrism, perfumed oil consecrated by the bishop, signifies the gift of the Holy Spirit to the newly baptized, who has become a Christian, that is, one “anointed” by the Holy Spirit, incorporated into Christ who is anointed priest, prophet, and king.
In the liturgy of the Eastern Churches, the post-baptismal anointing is the sacrament of Chrismation (Confirmation). In the Roman liturgy the post-baptismal anointing announces a second anointing with sacred chrism to be conferred later by the bishop Confirmation, which will as it were “confirm” and complete the baptismal anointing.
The white garment symbolizes that the person baptized has “put on Christ,” has risen with Christ. The candle, lit from the Easter candle, signifies that Christ has enlightened the neophyte. In him the baptized are “the light of the world.”
The newly baptized is now, in the only Son, a child of God entitled to say the prayer of the children of God: “Our Father.”
Catechism of the Catholic Church, nos. 1239-1243

Contemplating the mystery
Baptism makes us fideles, faithful. This is a word that was used – like sancti, the saints – by the first followers of Jesus to refer to one another. These words are still used today: we speak of the faithful of the Church.
Think about this.
The Forge, no. 622

In baptism, our Father God has taken possession of our lives, has made us share in the life of Christ, and has given us the Holy Spirit. Holy Scripture tells us that God has saved us “through the baptism of regeneration and renewal by the Holy Spirit; whom he has abundantly poured out upon us through Jesus Christ our Saviour, in order that, justified by his grace, we may be heirs in hope to life everlasting.”

The experience of our weakness and of our failings, the painful realization of the smallness and meanness of some who call themselves Christians, the apparent failure or aimlessness of some works of apostolate, all these things which bring home to us the reality of sin and human limitation, can still be a trial of our faith. Temptation and doubt can lead us to ask: where are the strength and the power of God? When that happens we have to react by practising the virtue of hope with greater purity and forcefulness, and striving to be more faithful.
Christ is Passing By, no. 128

The best way of showing our gratitude to God is to be passionately in love with the fact that we are his children.
The Forge, no. 333

I would like us to reflect now on the sacraments, which are foundations of divine grace. They are a wonderful proof of God’s loving kindness. Just meditate calmly on the Catechism of Trent’s definition: “Certain sensible signs which cause grace and at the same time declare it by putting it before our eyes.” God our Lord is infinite; his love is inexhaustible; his clemency and tenderness toward us are limitless. He grants us his grace in many other ways, but he has expressly and freely established, as only he can do, seven effective signs to enable men to share in the merits of the redemption in a stable, simple and accessible way.
Christ is Passing By, no. 78
<![CDATA[The Baptism of Jesus in the Jordan]]> Then Jesus came from Galilee to John, at the Jordan, to be baptized by him. And John was for hindering him, and said, “It is I who ought to be baptized by thee, and dost thou come to me?” But Jesus answered and said to him, “Let it be so now, for so it becomes us to fulfill all justice.” Then he permitted him. And when Jesus had been baptized, he immediately came up from the water. And behold, the heavens were opened to him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending as a dove and coming upon him. And behold, a voice from the heavens said, “This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.”
(Matthew 3:13-17)

All men are children of God. But a child can look upon his father in many ways. We must try to be children who realize that the Lord, by loving us as his children, has taken us into his house, in the middle of the world, to be members of his family, so that what is his is ours, and what is ours is his, and to develop that familiarity and confidence which prompts us to ask him, like children, for the moon!

A child of God treats the Lord as his Father. He is not obsequious and servile, he is not merely formal and well mannered: he is completely sincere and trusting. Men do not scandalize God. He can put up with all our infidelities. Our Father in heaven pardons any offence when his child returns to him, when he repents and asks for pardon. The Lord is such a good Father that he anticipates our desire to be pardoned and comes forward to us, opening his arms laden with grace.
Christ is Passing By, 64

A Christian knows that he is grafted onto Christ through baptism. He is empowered to fight for Christ through confirmation, called to act in the world sharing the royal, prophetic and priestly role of Christ. He has become one and the same thing with Christ through the Eucharist, the sacrament of unity and love. And so, like Christ, he has to live for other men, loving each and every one around him and indeed all humanity…

You cannot separate the fact that Christ is God from his role as redeemer. The Word became flesh and came into the world “to save all men.” With all our personal defects and limitations, we are other Christs, Christ himself, and we too are called to serve all men…

Our Lord has come to bring peace, good news and life to all men. Not only to the rich, nor only to the poor. Not only to the wise nor only to the simple. To everyone, to the brothers, for brothers we are, children of the same Father, God. So there is only one race, the race of the children of God. There is only one color, the color of the children of God. And there is only one language, the language which speaks to the heart and to the mind, without the noise of words, making us know God and love one another.
Christ is Passing By, 106]]>
<![CDATA[Prayer]]> We offer the prayer for Saint Josemaría’s intercession in English and in other languages, and new translations will be added shortly.

- English
- Download the prayercard in mp3 audio

It can be downloaded in PDF format in:

- Afrikaans
- Albanian
- Aranais (Vall de Aran, Catalunya)
- Western Armenian
- Eastern Armenian
- Ateso (Kenya)
- Bahasa Indonesia
- Basque
- Bengali
- Bulgarian
- Catalan
- Cebuano (Binisaya / Visayan, Philippines)
- Chinese
- Chinese Traditional
- Croatian
- Czech
- Danish
- Dholuo (Kenya) (back cover)
- Dutch (The Netherlands)
- English
- Estonian
- Finnish
- French
- Gaelic (Ireland)
- Galician
- German
- Greek
- Hindi
- Hungarian
- Igbo (Nigeria)
- Ilonggo (Hiligaynon) (Philippines)
- Italian
- Japanese
- Kazakh, (back cover)
- Kichwa (Ecuador)
- Kikamba (Kenya) (back cover)
- Kisii (Kenya) (back cover)
- Kikuyu (Kenya) (back cover)
- Kipsigis (Kenya) (back cover)
- Kiswahili
- Konkani (India)
- Korean
- Lari (Congo)
- Latin
- Latvian (Latvia)
- Lesotho
- Lithuanian
- Luganda (Uganda) (back cover)
- Luhyia (Kenya) (back cover)
- Malayalam (India)
- Maltese
- Mapuche, Chile
- Marathi (India)
- Norwegian
- Polishi
- Portuguese
- Quechua (Peru)
- Romanian
- Romansch
- Russian
- Rutooro (Uganda)
- Scottish Gaelic
- Singhalese (Sri Lanka)
- Slovak
- Slovenian
- Spanish
- Swedish
- Tagalog (Philippines)
- Tamil (India)
- Thai
- Turkish
- Ukrainian
- Vietnamese
- Welsh
- Xhosa (South Africa)
- Yoruba (Nigeria)
- Zulu]]>
<![CDATA[The perfect job for me]]> In October last year I lost my job. I sent my CV to lots of firms but only received three possible interviews. I was distraught. Then a friend recommended the novena to Saint Josemaria, and I began saying it that same day. After praying it for nearly four months, someone I know called me offering me a job that is perfect for me, and in which I can develop professionally. I am so grateful to the friend who helped me get to know Saint Josemaria and return to the Church… Thank you Saint Josemaria! Thank you, Our Lady and Jesus!]]> <![CDATA[He has always answered me]]> Four years ago, by chance, I came across the Novena for Work. At that time I took over the management of the technical division of a big company, from a person who seemed to be irreplaceable because he had been in the job for so long. I began praying the novena every day and found that the difficulties I was faced with began to be sorted out. In fact since that time we have made some major achievements and improved the management in many ways. Every time I was faced with a problem, I prayed to Saint Josemaria, asking him to intervene. He has always answered me. Words simply cannot express the immense help I have received from Saint Josemaria. I wanted to contribute my personal experience of his intercession. Thank you, Saint Josemaria! I pray every day for my family and for everyone who needs it.
<![CDATA[Finishing the favor]]> A year and a half ago, I prayed to St Josemaria for a job for my dad. After several attempts he obtained a full-time permanent job. But just before Christmas the van he used for deliveries was damaged. His line manager said he could choose whether to wait for two weeks while the van was repaired or look for another job.
When I heard about this from my parents I prayed to St Josemaria to finish off the favor he had begun. My dad talked to the supervisor at work to see whether he could work as an independent distributor. The supervisor said that since it was him and no-one else, he could go ahead. They allowed him to hire a vehicle for one month, to give him enough time to buy one for himself.
My parents were very happy but we did not stop praying to St Josemaria for the whole situation. The month went by, and the first week of January he had no work. Just two days before St Josemaria’s birthday, he got a call to say the new vehicle was ready and he could go and collect it. As he does not now depend on another man but directly on the company, he earns a little more money, which he uses to pay off the purchase of the vehicle and also the family car. Although that means two monthly payments, they manage to get by. My mum has asked me to keep praying to St Josemaria for two projects they have this year. I am doing so, and also asking St Josemaria that one of these projects may be to go to Rome to thank him for the favor received.

<![CDATA[Meeting Saint Josemaria, July 5 Chile]]> A gathering in Santiago de Chile where many people were able to ask Saint Josemaria about different topics such as educating their children, The Holy Mass, apostolate and Christian life.]]> <![CDATA[1932.1.16]]> “Child, each day offer him... even your frailties,” Saint Josemaría wrote on this date. It would later become no. 865 in The Way.]]> <![CDATA[St Josemaria Official Twitter Account]]> Tweets by @St_Josemaria !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);;js.src=p+"://";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");]]>