Without the generous involvement of the person, work becomes dehumanized

Marie-Thérèse Pallut, Paris, France

January 16, 2002

When we have to combine family life with employment, we really come to understand the interplay of our own personal struggle and God’s grace. We see every day that a family that is not focused on work is fragile and subjective… and that without the generous involvement of the person, work becomes dehumanized. When family life is sanctified it enriches our professional life. And what we have sanctified in our professional life, strengthens the demands of hard-working family life. I have learned this from Saint Josemaria’s life and writings.

Cardinal Francis Xavier Nguyen Van Thuan (1928-2002),

President of the Pontifical Council of Justice and Peace

January 11, 2002

I know that Josemaria Escriva wanted the catechism of Christian doctrine to refer to the social and political obligations of Christians in civil society. In this way, Catholics from childhood could be educated in unity of life: a good Christian must also be a good citizen. His wish has come true. The Catechism of the Catholic Church, in the third part, dedicates an entire section to this topic.

Msgr. George Pell, Archbishop of Sydney, Australia

Overcoming the inconsistencies between spiritual life and science

January 10, 2002

Josemaria’s Christocentrism, with its unifying explanation of all aspects of life, promises to overcome the inconsistencies that have arisen in the previous centuries between intellectual life and the life of faith, between spiritual life and scientific work, between Christian life and professional life. This is particularly providential today, especially in the Western world where our sociological defences of parish and school, and even the family itself, have been weakened by theological developments easily exploited by the neo-pagan radio, television and Internet.

Like a Play Written by God

Michael König, actor, Munich, Germany

January 10, 2002

I am an actor and right now I work at the Burgtheater in Vienna. In order to describe the enormous enrichment that my life has gained from the life and teachings of Josemaria Escriva, I have to outline briefly the circumstances in which I met him.

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Balancing the equation of work and family is not an easy task

Jorge Claude, Chile

January 10, 2002

Balancing the equation of work and family is not an easy task. In fact it is a constant challenge, which demands eternal vigilance.
I was born in Chile, in a family that was French on both sides. My parents were always concerned to educate us in the human virtues, and to keep up a close relationship with my brothers and sisters and myself. I still love to recall the passionately interesting, deep conversations we used to have after dinner.

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Human Rights in Developing Countries: The Nigerian Experience

Anayo J. Offiah, lawyer of 25 years’ experience in a wide range of legal practice in Nigeria

January 10, 2002

“We children of God, who are citizens with the same standing as any others, have to take part fearlessly in all honest human activities and organizations, so that Christ may be present in them.

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Giving Oneself in Family Life

Mauricio Grade Ballarotti, electrical Engineering student, University of Londrina, Brazil

January 10, 2002

What does society need? What are the reliable values to guide each person in terms of citizenship, fulfillment, world development and peace? Can it be said that everyone can do something? “Don’t wish to be like the gilded weather-cock on top of a great building: however much it shines, and however high it stands, it adds nothing to the solidity of the building. Rather be like an old stone block hidden in the foundations, underground, where no one can see you: because of you the house will not fall” (The Way, 590). Fame, glory, money and lust often have a strong influence in our world. But as human beings we only fulfill ourselves when we dedicate our lives to others, to the tremendous reality that surrounds us, rather than to ourselves.

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Lay the very last stone with love

Regina N. Eya, professor of Psychology, Enugu State University, Enugu, Nigeria

January 10, 2002

The secret of doing my working the best I can is the love with which I start it, continue it and finish it, and the love with which I offer it to God – and that is a task for every day. I know that God is looking at me and witnessing my efforts. I have some small objects in my office such as a crucifix and a picture of our Lady, to help me remember God and rectify my intention frequently, sort out problems with a coworker, or keep going when I am extra tired. You have to rectify your intention if you want to finish off your work to the very end, to lay the very last stone.

Msgr. Adam Exner, Archbishop of Vancouver, Canada

He allowed God to guide him and shape his life

January 9, 2002

Saints are not people who plan and organize their particular style of life and perfection, and follow it strictly on their own strength. Saints are people who love and trust God to the point that they let him guide them and lead them where he wants.

Cardinal Camillo Ruini, Rome

Priority for the third millennium

January 9, 2002

Duc in altum! Launch out into deep water! The spirit to which Josemaria Escriva has given witness is a firm reference point from which to set out effectively on the paths of the third millennium. Josemaria Escriva’s life and works offer us guidance in not losing sight of the first and fundamental ‘pastoral priority’ the Pope has pointed out for the Church: holiness.

Msgr. Juan José Omella, Bishop of Barbastro-Monzón, Spain (Saint Josemaria’s home town)

Helping many people to know and love God

January 9, 2002

He lived a life rooted in Christ; he loved the Church passionately and joyfully and he founded Opus Dei. We give thanks for what the Work has been for the Church and for many other people, by helping them to know and to love God more.

Mgr. Ricardo Blázquez, Bishop of Bilbao, Spain

Making our lives fruitful

January 9, 2002

By his life, homilies and writings, Saint Josemaria taught us that work is not a painful way but also a human activity that becomes the “work of God” by his grace. Our work is where the Lord comes to meet us, to show us his face and to make our Christian lives fruitful.