General Audience, 20 April 2011

Benedicto XVI

I address a warm welcome to the Italian-speaking pilgrims. I greet in particular those participating in the international UNIV meeting, sponsored by the Prelature of Opus Dei. Tags: Gospel, Jesus Christ, Pope Benedict XVI

1928-1936: Historical, political and social situation in Spain

The early years of Opus Dei: Historical, political and social situation in Spain. Condensed from the book written by the history expert John F. Coverdale, Uncommon Faith: the early years of Opus Dei (1928-1943), Princeton: Scepter, 2002., chapters 1 and 3-18. Tags: Suffering, Spanish Civil War, History, Youth, Opus Dei

1928-1930: The birth of Opus Dei: social, economic and political background in Spain

John Coverdale

Father Josemaria Escriva, born in Barbastro, north-east Spain, in 1902, was ordained a priest in Saragossa in 1925. In mid-April 1927 he moved to the capital, Madrid, to study for a doctorate in law while working as assistant priest at the church of St Michael. Tags: Founding of Opus Dei, Spanish Civil War, History, Madrid, Isidoro Zorzano, Opus Dei name, Opus Dei's foundational charisma

1931-1932: The Second Spanish Republic and Spanish anticlericalism

John Coverdale

When King Alfonso XIII forced Primo de Rivera to resign in January 1930, the king hoped to reestablish political normality under a constitutional monarchy. Tags: Alvaro del Portillo, Suffering, Sickness, Spanish Civil War, History, Madrid, Poverty, Politics, Women, Juan Jimenez Vargas, Opus Dei members, Anti-clericalism, Spanish history

1933-1934: A Background of Tension and Violence

John Coverdale

Political tension and violence continued during 1933 and 1934. Tags: Spanish Civil War

1935-1936: Political and social developments. Deteriorating Political and Social Situation

John Coverdale

Deteriorating Political and Social Situation. As 1935 progressed, the political and social situation in Spain deteriorated even further. Tags: Spanish Civil War, Youth, Opus Dei, Vocation, Isidoro Zorzano, Juan Jimenez Vargas, St Raphael work, first members

1936-1937: First stages of the civil war. Situation of Opus Dei

John Coverdale

The rapid division of the country into two zones, and the breakdown of communications within the Republican zone, separated the members of Opus Dei who were outside Madrid from Escrivá and the rest of the members in Madrid. The outbreak of violent class conflict and religious persecution throughout the Republican zone interrupted Opus Dei’s corporate apostolic activities and obstructed its members’ personal apostolate with their friends, colleagues, and relatives. Like many other Spaniards, a number of the members found their lives in danger and were forced to go into hiding. Tags: Alvaro del Portillo, Spanish Civil War, Madrid, Franco, The DYA academy, Isidoro Zorzano, Juan Jimenez Vargas, The Honduran Legation, Opus Dei members, first members, Spanish history

1937-1939: Later stages of the Spanish Civil War

John Coverdale

When peace finally returned to Spain, only fifteen men and one woman belonged to Opus Dei. Among them, however, were solid, tested people who possessed a deep interior life of prayer and sacrifice and were firmly committed to living their vocation. Tags: Alvaro del Portillo, Sickness, Spanish Civil War, Poverty, Franco, Father, Penance, Burgos, Juan Jimenez Vargas, Pedro Casciaro, first members

January 1938, from Burgos, Spain: "If you need me, just call me"

Andrés Vázquez de Prada

After escaping to the other side of Spain and staying briefly in Pamplona, St Josemaria settled in Burgos. From there, in conditions of great deprivation, in a country devastated by war, he carried out an intense apostolate until March 27, the day on which he moved to Madrid. Tags: Spanish Civil War, Burgos


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