Josemaria Escriva. Founder of Opus Dei - On this day Life and teachings of Saint Josemaria day by day <![CDATA[1933.6.22]]> St Josemaría perceived one of God’s direct interventions in his soul. He wrote down what happened: “I was alone, in a side chapel in the Church of Our Lady of Perpetual Help, and I was trying to pray before Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament, who was exposed on the altar in a monstrance. Suddenly, for an instant and without any reason being given which could explain it – there was none – this most bitter thought came into my mind: ‘And what if all of this is a lie, an illusion of yours, and you are wasting your time… and, still worse, you are wasting it for all these others, too?’ This only lasted a few seconds, but how I suffered! Then I spoke to Jesus and said to him, ‘Lord,’ (the words aren’t exact) ‘if the Work is not yours, demolish it; right now, at this moment, in such a way that I may know it.’ Immediately I not only felt confirmed as to the truth of his will with regard to the Work, but also saw with clarity a point about the organization of it which had been baffling me.”]]> <![CDATA[1946.6.21]]> St Josemaría traveled to Rome for the first time, sailing from the port of Barcelona on board the steamship J. J. Sister. Years later, recalling the journey, he said, “I came to Rome with my whole soul in the hands of my Mother the Blessed Virgin, and with a burning faith in God our Lord, whom I was invoking trustingly, telling him: Ecce nos reliquimus omnia et secuti sumus Te: quid ergo erit nobis? Behold, we have left all things and followed you: what will become of us? (Mt 19:27). What will become of us, O God my Father?”]]> <![CDATA[1957.6.20]]> Carmen Escriva, who had helped her brother unconditionally right from the start, died in Rome. The Founder of Opus Dei said, “The tears were over the very moment she died: I am happy now, my sons, and grateful to Our Lord who has taken her to Heaven, and I rejoice with the joy of the Holy Spirit. You should rejoice with me, because she is already in Heaven. She was looking forward to Heaven, looking forward to it very much. She is already there praying for us.”]]> <![CDATA[1933.6.19]]> “Hope for everything from God. He does not lose battles,” wrote St Josemaría.]]> <![CDATA[1931.6.18]]> St Josemaría left the Foundation for the Sick, a charitable institution working for the disadvantaged. It was hard to tear himself away from a place where he had the opportunity to alleviate his neighbor’s sufferings and have those sufferings offered up. “I think,” he said to himself, “that some of those sick people whom I assisted before their death, during my apostolic years, have a lot of influence with the Heart of Jesus.”]]> <![CDATA[1936.6.17]]> St Josemaría wrote: “I have not been frustrated in my hopes, although over these past few days I have given Jesus plenty of good reasons to abandon us. It’s one more proof of the divine origin of the Work: it is from him, so he does not abandon it. If it were mine, he would long ago have given it up as a lost cause”.]]> <![CDATA[1974.6.16]]> On June 16, 1974 thousands of people gathered in the San Martin congress hall in Buenos Aires. St Josemaría said a few words at the outset of the gathering: “You will not be surprised - because you will think it quite natural - if I tell you that I remembered you very much this morning in the Holy Mass; and also in my thanksgiving. I prayed to our Lord for each of you; for your worries and concerns, for your affections and interests, for your physical health, and for your spiritual health. Because I want you to be happy.”]]> <![CDATA[1975.6.15]]> Eleven days before St Josemaría died, on June 15, 1975, he said in a conversation with a numerous group of people of the Work: “Out of devotion I like to celebrate frequently - when it is liturgically permissible - the Mass of the Blessed Virgin: I think I have mentioned this before. And there is an old prayer, in which the priest asks for health mentis et corporis, of mind and body, and then the joy of living. How beautiful! There are some who think the joy of living is something pagan, because what they are looking for is the joy of dying, of foolishly committing suicide, doing themselves to death with dung up to their eyebrows. To follow Christ and to seek sanctity is to have the joy of living. Saints are not sad or melancholic; they have a sense of humor.”]]> <![CDATA[1948.6.14]]> For several years St Josemaría wrote brief notes. They were personal phrases reflecting his relationship and conversation with God. In 1948 he explained: “These are candid notes – Catherines, I called them, in honor of the Saint of Siena – which I used to write kneeling down, and which served me as reminders and wake-up calls. I think that, as a rule, when I was writing with that childlike simplicity, I was praying.”]]> <![CDATA[1946.6.13]]> During the preceding months, documents had been presented and studied in Rome concerning the pontifical approval of Opus Dei. Fr Alvaro del Portillo, who had traveled to Rome to work on the matter, wrote to St Josemaría that it would be best if he came to Rome himself. St Josemaría replied in a letter of today’s date: “I don’t feel at all like making this trip that you tell me would be helpful; I’ve never been in worse shape, in body or morale. Nevertheless, determined not to stand in the way of God’s will, this very morning I got my papers together, just in case. If I go, I will go as a bundle of rags. Fiat!”]]>