By Francois Gondrand
On June 26, 1975, Josemaría Escrivá, the founder of Opus Dei, died in Rome. He was known throughout the world as a pioneer of the apostolate of the laity and a tireless promoter of the quest for sanctity in everyday life for those living in the midst of the world. Less than six years later, the process of his beatification and canonization was opened in Rome. The petitions for his canonization came not only from important figures in the civil and ecclesiastical life of many different countries, but also from thousands of ordinary men and women who were witness to his sanctity and to his influence on their lives. He was beatified on May 17, 1992 and canonized on October 6, 2002 by St. John Paul in Rome.
Opus Dei (the Work of God) was born on October 2, 1928. For St. Josemaría it was the beginning of a remarkable spiritual adventure, one that has had far-reaching effects and opened up a way to God, remarkable for its astounding vision. From that day until the day he died, he did not cease to promote the marking out of that way with all his strength.
Who was this remarkable man? What was the path he took, first of all to the priesthood and then to the founding of this Work of God, which he developed at God’s pace? What were the joys and the obstacles he encountered along this journey?
These questions are answered here. This book will also help toward a deeper understanding of the true nature of this institution of the Church, and toward recognizing the reasons for its rapid development: when the founder died there were 60,000 member of Opus Dei.