"Love our Lady…"

I’m working my way through St. Josemaria Escriva’s “The Way,” and this jumped out at me this morning — apt thoughts for a deacon, and for this month devoted to Mary:

“Love our Lady.  And she will obtain abundant grace to help you conquer in your daily struggle.  And the enemy will gain nothing by those perversities that seem to boil up continually within you, trying to engulf in their fragrant corruption the high ideals, those sublime commands that Christ himself has placed in your heart.  Serviam! — ‘I will serve!’”

I’ve written more about Mary and a particular devotion to her, the rosary, over in my column “All Things New.”  Check it out.

Meantime, I join my small voice with those of so many others: “Pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death.  Amen.”

Comments

  1. Deacon John M. Bresnahan says:

    My wife and I went to see “There Be Dragons” yesterday. It was startlingly pro-Catholic and extremely spiritual. (I make the comment here because the movie is basically a biography of St. Jose- maria Escriva.) Two weeks ago we saw “Of Gods and Men.” –The story of the Trappist monks who were martyred in Algeria. Again the movie was startlingly positive. On top of that a movie about the heroic Catholic resistence to past Mexican government persecution will be out soon (“Christiana” I believe it is named) and recently “The Rite” was a fair and positive look at exorcism in the Catholic Church.
    Now is the time for Catholics to go to the movies. Each paid admission is a vote for future positive movies involving the Catholic Church. In fact with these high quality and “Hollywood” made movies, if Catholics don’t get out and see the movies—or at least buy the videos when they become available– we will only have ourselves to blame if no more such movies are made.

  2. Yes, Escriva has so much in the Way. However it is imbued with some poison too. What about the maxims that speak of letting your spiritual director (not necessarily a priest)-ask Fr Mc Closkey, where Escriva states you must tell them every intimate detail and not to leave anything out, or about where the spiritual director will make judgements for you…and that you know nothing!

    My daughter is estranged from her large family. She has been living for 8 months in an opus sei residence and they refuse to give us her address. They told our daughter that we neglected her, do not love her and that she was not safe! They did tell us that she was in an opus dei residence and that was all. He coerced her into going to the police and saying we were harassing them. When asked for some evidence the policeman said they told him they had none. He is the son of 2 apparently powerful supernumeries who started opus dei schools.

    A month ago, they went to the police and we received a call from the police saying we were to have no contact with her. The policeman said he thought the boyfriend was strange and that she said little and he announced he would take care of the answers.

    Her last words were ” my boyfriend and I know everybody’s secrets,” the night she left. Is this what Opus dei collate? To use for future reference? This is NOT CHRIST like whatsoever. The fourth commandment would never want this relationship between child and parent.

    Let there be dragons is more suitable in title as one could ever imagine.

    One day my family and I hope to see her again. God knows what damage the Opus have done.
    Last family conversation was with her little sister in January. She told her sister how she was starving, cold, had no food, clothes or money, not even a job. Then she went on to say that she was a sl – ave a waitress.

    To see Escriva get a plug on your site fills me with great sadness and I ask you to be aware that Opus dei is surrounded in controversy for real reasons. and my family can testify to that. Please pray for her. Her name is Mary.

  3. How dreadful Henry! I will pray for your daughter Mary.
    Keep courage and faith in Jesus and Our Lady. You called her Mary for a reason I gather.

  4. Richard W Comerford says:

    Henry:

    You say that you daughter is starving, without cloths but living at an Opus Dei Center; however you do not know which one; but the Police do? This is fairly serious. It demands immediate action. I am happy to help. What Police Department contacted you?

    God bless

    Richard W Comerford

  5. What Henry wrote seems most strange to me. I am a Supernumerary in Opus Dei and what he has written is just not what Opus Dei does.

    It sounds to me that whoever has control over his daughter has nothing to do with Opus Dei at all. Women who join Opus Dei live in a residence with other women. They do not live in any place where a man or men live or have control over them.

    The only men that might have any contact with her would be a priest, and the priests of Opus Dei do not control the coming and going of any of the women of Opus Dei. They administer Sacraments, give spiritual direction, give meditations, workshop classes, etc. That is all.

    If I was Henry, I would hire a private investigator to find my daughter.

  6. Deacon John M. Bresnahan says:

    John Allen Jr. a fairly liberal investigative reporter for National Catholic Reporter in 2005 published a book titled “Opus Dei.” He found that allegations like Henry made are myths. He called such stories a far cry from Opus Dei’s reality. There have apparently been a lot of myths circulated about Opus Dei by some who do not like that group’s strong traditionalism and orthodoxy.
    Vittorio Messori, another internationally known reporter also investigated and came to a conclusion similar to Allen’s
    Maybe that is why I felt I might be reading a fable partially pulled from “The DaVinci Code” when I was reading Henry’s comment.
    Incidentally, Allen came away from his probing with a very, very high opinion of Father Josemaria Escriva as both a man and a priest.

  7. I love St. Josemaria and have a special devotion to him. I entered the Catholic Church largely due to his example…his preaching and QandA on Youtube and EWTN. He strkes me as such a kindhearted guy who has a contagious love for our Lord and our Lady. I chose him as my Confirmation Saint and I have been glad for the choice ever since.
    Peace! I’m learning to love our Lady more and more.
    Saint Josemaria, Pray for us!

  8. Thank you Claire for your prayers.
    Richard, Joan ,John and Rob.

    Firstly, I live in Australia. My daughter is 23 years old and is protected by law to live as she pleases. We have no say. The young man is her 30 year old fiance.

    I have not lied. It is not a myth I am writing about, it is a sad and tragic reality. I am not saying anything bad about St Escriva. But, as I said to my daughter he would be rolling over in his grave knowing how this sinfulness is happening under his “child”.

    I cannot wait for Christ himself to appear and set the record straight about a few things us know all creatures believe. He knows and Our Lady knows what has happened and they feel our suffering and pain and they are the only ones who I care that means anything. He is a God of Mercy but also a God of justice.

    Happy are those who are persecuted for my sake…

    Deacon John, Mr Allan is a journalist whom I do not know personally. I do read his work like you. But sir, in all fairness he was more than likely presented with a veneer of what they appear to be. You must acknowledge that. Joan, I am sure that most people like you have the greatest and noblest intentions but to totally disbelieve that all lay people in Opus Dei are perfection is just plain utopia thinking.

    I reiterate I am not lying or fabricating anything. I am heartbroken and grieving for a dreadful and bizarre circumstance that our family never believed could happen. it has left me so untrusting of all men.

  9. I must also add that they are not one bit traditionalist in our country. They only like the novus ordo. I am TLM as is the rest of my family. They frown and scorn at you if a woman veils herself in their church. They are very modern and carry on as if John Paul II was the only pope who ever existed. Our Cardinal only ever seems to refer to this vatican II pope when he speaks in this country. Please read for yourself and realise I am not joking.Opus Dei are NOT traditionalists so they are neither orthodox, well not on my side of the planet.Their Opus Dei priests say a version of Novus Ordo Latin in their residences. Ask them.

  10. Richard W Comerford says:

    Henry:

    Although I from time to time advocate for people at risk and with special needs in the USA I am afraid I am way out of my depth if you and your daughter live in Australia. However I may offer some very minor assistance:

    * If your daughter is in any way connected with Opus Dei and she is in need then IMO that organization is obligated to assist her in her material (food, clothing) needs.

    * If another member of Opus Dei has in any way contributed to your daughter’s dire straights then again that organization has an obligation to review said member’s conduct.

    * You should start by contacting your local Opus Dei group/sub-organization/center in writing and asking for their assistance. Explain the situation simply and completely. If you do not hear from them write to their national office and then to Rome. If they still do not respond then write to your Bishop.

    * We are living amidst a world wide scandal regarding the exploitation of vulnerable people, including children, by religious figures. Remarkably, although almost every other Catholic Institution has been tainted to one degree or another Opus Dei so far has been free of the scandal. This is almost unbelievable. It means that there is something very right about the leadership of the organization.

    * The Deacon has e-mailed me about your case. I told him to send you my e-mail address. If you need help drafting letters or finding addresses I would be delighted to help.

    * This Spanish priest who founded Opus Dei and was canonized is a Saint for a reason. Maybe it would help to pray for him?

    * I will remember your intention and those of your daughter in my next pilgrimage to Our Lady of LaSalette.

    Remember you are never alone. That is why God gave us the Communion of Saints.

    God bless

    Richard W Comerford

  11. Richard, I love La Salette. Thank you.

    As for any action, I have no say in her choices at 23 years of age. It will be our word against theirs. I am not a confrontationalist.

    God bless you for your empathy.

    The whole reason I have contributed to this blog is to remind all of us

    “If it seems too good to be true , then it is too good to be TRUE”.

    The 10 commandments, the sacraments and doing your duty as best as one can is so simple. Abundant grace flows from above from Holy Mass in itself. Our parents taught us these things as did their parents and so on. why we have had to complicate it to the point of turning ourselves into robots and follow a charismatic leader is not necessarily the right thing for others. I guess I just love the faith of our fathers more than I realise. I am not opus dei’s judge or St Escriva’s judge. I am not my daughter’s judge either. I have to believe that life will teach her lessons as it has me.
    Thank God she is still aware that she has a family to turn to should she ever need us. I have to be patient and trust in the power of prayer. It’s a cross but we have to carry it as cheerfully as we can. Thank you Richard. Hope to see you in Heaven one day. God bless you.

    A person is too quick to be judged these days. Particularly if they seem to go against popular thinking espoused by a select few.

  12. That was a really incredible post…

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