Thursday, September 21, 2006

Opus Dei

Bill reflects on his experience with Opus Dei. I also attended last night's evening of recollection in Houston and, as always, I enjoyed it immensely. I have been greatly impressed by the caliber of the men involved with the Work, and most especially the priests. I also find a great appeal in the teachings of St. Josemaria Escriva -- though these teachings are nothing new! They are the teachings of the Church, especially as underscored recently by the Second Vatican Council (e.g. Lumen Gentium), but I believe St. Josemaria's message is one that our modern world desperately needs to hear and hear again.

We are ordinary folk, and yet every one of us is called to be a saint. God wants all of us! But how is this accomplished in us? Be a saint in your work! Our daily work, in our jobs and in our families, should be a fit offering of God; if it's something we can offer to Him, then our work is holy. I always try to focus on my individual relationships and conversations of the day. How simple they are, yet God is present even in that connection if you only look and are aware. Everything we do in our day is carried out in the presence of God. He is never far from us, so we should never lose hope! God is always making His presence known to us... And yet we must talk about being realistic in our spiritual growth. It's not easy, and we have many things that distract us... many failings... but God, in His grace, gives us what we need to turn things around and to live with Him.
Do not become alarmed or discouraged to discover that you have failings - and such failings! Struggle to uproot them. And as you do so, be convinced that it is even a good thing to be aware of all those weaknesses, for otherwise you would be proud. And pride separates us from God.

-St. Josemaria Escriva, from The Forge #181
I have also found great inspiration in the spirituality of the Order of Preachers (Dominicans), which I will write more about another time.

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