Josemaría Escrivá

Josemaría Escrivá: A Life of Virtue and Dedication

In the heart of Madrid, on a brisk January day in 1902, a child was born who would grow to sow seeds of faith across the world. His name was Josemaría Escrivá. This article seeks to shed light on the remarkable life journey of this Catholic saint, his trials, his triumphs, and his enduring legacy.

The Early Years

As a young boy, Josemaría showed an uncommon sensitivity towards the sufferings of the poor. He often gave up his meals to assist those in need. The seed of calling was planted when he declared he wanted to become a priest.

The path to priesthood was not an easy one for Josemaría. He faced numerous obstacles but was undeterred. He believed that God was guiding him, encouraging him to press forward despite the hardships. His unwavering conviction eventually led to his ordination as a priest in 1925.

The Birth of Opus Dei

On October 2nd, 1928, the vision of Opus Dei (The Work of God), a personal prelature of the Catholic Church, was revealed to him. The goal was to help ordinary Christians find holiness in their daily activities. This echoed his belief that everyone is called to lead a holy life, regardless of their vocation or circumstances.

"Don’t let your life be sterile. Be useful. Blaze a trail. Shine forth with the light of your faith, and the light of your love."

- St. Josemaria Escriva

Tireless Advocate of Faith

Josemaría devoted his entire life to spreading his message of faith and holiness. He worked tirelessly, despite facing numerous challenges, including the Spanish Civil War which forced him into exile for a time. During these difficult years, he never lost sight of his divine mission, continuing to spread the word of God and nurturing Opus Dei.

The Life of a Saint

The devotion to his mission and his inspiring way of living the Christian life eventually led to his canonization by Pope John Paul II in 2002. He was known as Saint Josemaría Escrivá, the saint of ordinary life.

"We have to be contemplative souls in the middle of the world, who strive to turn every conceivable situation into an occasion for loving God and serving our fellow men."

- St. Josemaria Escriva

The Legacy of Josemaría Escrivá

Today, the teachings and influence of Saint Josemaría Escrivá continue to flourish in the hearts of many faithful around the world. His life serves as an enduring reminder that sanctity can be achieved in everyday life.

An Inspiration to All

Whether you are familiar with Josemaría Escrivá or just getting to know about his life and work, his teachings can inspire and challenge us all. His life stands testament to the power of faith, love, and dedication. He remains a beacon of light for all who seek to live a life of Christian virtue.

"May you seek Christ. May you find Christ. May you love Christ."

- St. Josemaria Escriva

Through the life of Saint Josemaría Escrivá, we are reminded of God's call for each of us to lead a holy and service-oriented life. We are called to shine our light in our corner of the world, no matter how small or insignificant it may seem. He encourages us to see the beauty in the mundane, the extraordinary in the ordinary, and the hand of God in every moment of our lives.

May this exploration of the life and teachings of Saint Josemaría Escrivá inspire you to live your faith boldly and courageously. Pray for his intercession, that you may find the grace to see God in all things, to strive for holiness in daily life, and to become 'contemplative souls in the middle of the world'.

Un encuentro con san Josemaría en Brasil

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Glimpses of the preaching of St Josemaria Escriva - Brafa, 1972 / San Josemaría en Brafa, 1972

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El Intermedio: La verdad sobre el Opus Dei

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What is Saint Josemaria Escriva known for?

Saint Josemaria Escriva is known as the founder of Opus Dei ("Work of God" in Latin), an organization that seeks to help people discover and live out their call to holiness in their everyday lives. He was canonized by Pope John Paul II in 2002.

Born in Barbastro, Spain, in 1902, Escriva felt a calling to priesthood at a young age. He was ordained a priest in 1925, and in 1928, he founded Opus Dei. His vision was to encourage lay people, not just priests and nuns, to aspire to sainthood. He believed that everyone is called by God to become a saint, and that this could be achieved through carrying out one's daily work and activities with a Christian spirit.

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Escriva wrote various spiritual works, most notably "The Way", which has been translated into many languages and has millions of copies in circulation worldwide. In these writings, he encouraged a deep, personal relationship with God in the context of ordinary life.

Escriva's teachings have shaped the spirituality of countless individuals and have left a significant impact on the Catholic Church. He is seen by many as a key figure in the universal call to holiness— the belief that all people, no matter their state in life, are called to be saints.

Why is Josemaria Escriva patron saint of diabetes?

Saint Josemaria Escriva is not officially recognized as the patron saint of diabetes by the Catholic Church. It's important to note that the designation of patronages is often based on the saint's life, miracles, or the areas they are known to intercede for.

However, some people might pray to Saint Josemaria Escriva for intercession in relation to diabetes because of his approach to suffering and sickness. Josemaria Escriva preached about finding holiness in everyday life and offered a powerful example of uniting personal suffering with Christ's passion.

Although not officially declared, the connection between Saint Josemaria and diabetes could be attributed to the fact that he personally suffered from diabetes. He could empathize with the difficulty and suffering that comes with this disease.

He taught about "sanctifying work," meaning to offer up one's daily tasks and struggles - including illness - to God, thereby transforming them into moments of prayer and opportunities for spiritual growth. Therefore, those struggling with diabetes might be inspired by his teachings to unite their sufferings with Christ's.

In summary, the association of Saint Josemaria Escriva with diabetes is more based on personal devotion rather than on an official recognition from the Catholic Church. People may choose to pray to him due to his personal experience with the illness and his teachings on suffering. But it's essential to remember that the Catholic Church has not officially designated him as the patron saint of diabetes.

Who was Josemaría Escrivá and what is his significance in the Catholic Church?

Josemaría Escrivá was a Spanish Roman Catholic priest who founded the Catholic lay organization Opus Dei, which holds significant influence in the Vatican and globally. He is revered as a saint in the Catholic Church.

Born in 1902, Escrivá felt a strong calling to the priesthood at a young age, and was ordained in 1925. During a retreat in Madrid in 1928, he was inspired to start Opus Dei, a movement that advocates for the sanctification of ordinary life or finding God in everyday activities. The name 'Opus Dei' translates to 'Work of God' in Latin.

Escrivá dedicated his life to establishing and developing Opus Dei. He also wrote several books on spirituality, including "The Way", which has sold millions of copies worldwide and has been translated into dozens of languages. His teachings emphasized that everyone is called to holiness and that they can achieve it by fulfilling their daily duties with Christian spirit.

After his death in 1975, Escrivá's cause for canonization was opened. In 1992, he was beatified by Pope John Paul II and was eventually canonized as a saint in 2002. Saint Josemaría Escrivá's feast day is celebrated on June 26th.

Saint Josemaría Escrivá's significance in the Catholic Church lies largely in the impact of Opus Dei. Today, the organization boasts a large membership across the world, and its teachings have influenced many Catholics' understanding of their faith. Despite controversy over its practices and influence, Opus Dei continues to play an important role within the church, thanks in large part to the work of Saint Josemaría Escrivá.

What are some noteworthy accomplishments of Saint Josemaría Escrivá during his lifetime?

Saint Josemaría Escrivá was a Roman Catholic priest from Spain, known primarily for founding Opus Dei, an organization dedicated to the spiritual development of laypeople in the Church. His life was marked by various notable achievements.

Founding Opus Dei: In 1928, he established the Prelature of the Holy Cross and Opus Dei, an institution within the Catholic Church that teaches that everyone is called to holiness and that ordinary life is a path to sanctity. This institution has played a significant role in the spiritual lives of numerous people around the globe.

Teaching on the universal call to holiness: Saint Josemaría had a persistent message that all men and women are called to a life of holiness, regardless of their status or occupation. At a time when there was a tendency to consider holiness the exclusive domain of the clergy and religious, he emphasized that all work, no matter how mundane, can be sanctified and can sanctify.

Development of the Priestly Society of the Holy Cross: In 1943, he started the Priestly Society of the Holy Cross, aimed at supporting diocesan priests in their spiritual life and pastoral ministry.

Significant influence on Vatican II: Although he was not a participant of the Second Vatican Council (1962-1965), his teachings on the universal call to holiness were considered instrumental. These teachings went on to form part of the most important documents of the council, specifically the Dogmatic Constitution of the Church, Lumen Gentium.

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Canonization: After his death in 1975, his cause for canonization was initiated. After a thorough examination of his life and miracles attributed to his intercession, he was canonized as a saint by Pope John Paul II in 2002, demonstrating the Church's recognition of his saintly life and significant contributions to Catholic thought and spirituality.

Can you elaborate on the teachings of St. Josemaría Escrivá and how they have impacted Catholicism?

St. Josemaría Escrivá was a Spanish Roman Catholic priest who founded Opus Dei, an organization of laypeople and priests dedicated to the teaching that everyone is called to holiness and that ordinary life is a path to sanctity. St. Josemaría Escrivá was canonized by Pope John Paul II in 2002 and he is best known for promoting a return to the early Christian tradition of recognizing the value of work and the everyday activities of human life as a path to sanctity.

Teachings of St. Josemaría Escrivá

1. The Universal Call to Holiness: He emphasized that every person, regardless of their status or vocation in life, is called to be holy. Holiness is not just for priests and nuns, but for everyone.

2. Sanctification of Ordinary Work: St. Josemaría taught the importance of transforming ordinary work into a means of connecting with God. This teaching was revolutionary at its time, strongly emphasizing on the sanctity of work. This provided a new perspective on how people can serve God through their daily tasks.

3. Living a Christ-centered Life: He promoted the notion that to be truly happy, we must live a life centered on Christ. This includes finding Christ in everyday moments and using those moments to deepen our relationship with Him.

Impact on Catholicism

The teachings of St. Josemaría Escrivá have had a profound impact on Catholicism by providing a practical approach for lay people to grow in holiness without having to abandon their ordinary occupations and responsibilities. His teachings emphasized that all aspects of life, even the most mundane, can be suffused with divine grace.

His teachings sparked a spiritual renewal in Catholicism, re-emphasizing the Church's traditional teachings on holiness while also acknowledging the importance of the laity. His teachings have helped to inspire millions of people globally to seek holiness in their daily lives.

Opus Dei, the organization he founded, has also been influential within Catholicism. It promotes a form of Christian living that is grounded in one's daily activities, fostering spiritual development through ordinary work and life. Today, Opus Dei has tens of thousands of members worldwide, testament to the lasting influence of St. Josemaría Escrivá's teachings.

Why was Josemaría Escrivá canonized as a saint, and what miracles are attributed to him?

Josemaría Escrivá, a Roman Catholic priest from Spain, was canonized as a saint because of his holy life and the miracles attributed to him after his death. He is the founder of Opus Dei, an organization that teaches that everyone is called to holiness and that ordinary life can be a path to sanctity.

The process of his canonization started in 1980, ten years after his death, and he was beatified by Pope John Paul II on May 17, 1992. He was then canonized by the same Pope on October 6, 2002.

There are two miracles that played a significant role in his canonization:

1. The cure of Dr. Antonio Sedano Madrid, a 73-year-old Spanish doctor who suffered from cancerous tumors in his neck. After intercessory prayers to Escrivá, the tumors disappeared without any scientific explanation, which made the Rome's Sacred Congregation for the Causes of Saints declare it a miracle in 1992. This led to Escrivá's beatification.

2. The second miracle involved the cure of Manuel Nevado Rey from Valencia, Spain. He had chronic radiodermatitis, which later developed into skin cancer due to his occupational exposure to X-rays. After praying to Escrivá, Nevado Rey found his condition cured without medical explanation. This miracle, recognized in 2001, paved the way for Escrivá's canonization.

Escrivá's canonization attracted a great deal of attention worldwide, attracting hundreds of thousands of pilgrims to Rome, and was seen as an affirmation of his teaching on the universal call to holiness.

How does the work of Saint Josemaría Escrivá continue to influence the contemporary Catholic Church?

Saint Josemaría Escrivá, the founder of Opus Dei, significantly influences the contemporary Catholic Church through his teaching on sanctification of daily work and ordinary life. He passionately believed that all people, regardless of their station in life, can find holiness in their everyday experiences. This simple yet transformative view of daily life continues to inspire millions of Catholics worldwide.

Escrivá's teachings bring about a closer connection between faith and work. He emphasized the idea that work is a path to holiness, not separate from it. Today, these teachings translate into an increased focus on living out faith authentically in every aspect of life, which has greatly influenced the way modern Catholics approach their faith.

Furthermore, through Opus Dei, his influence has extended to the spiritual formation of lay people, priests, and bishops in the Church today. Opus Dei’s concept of personal prelature, where clergy and lay people dedicate themselves to the mission of the prelature, has given rise to new models of pastoral care and evangelism.

Another significant impact lies in the promotion of universal call to holiness. This concept, central to the Second Vatican Council, was profoundly influenced by Escrivá's teachings. He championed the belief that everyone, not just the clergy or those in religious orders, is called to holiness.

Lastly, Escrivá's writings, particularly "The Way," offer practical wisdom on living the Christian life in today's world. These texts have been translated into multiple languages, helping spread his teachings globally.

In conclusion, Saint Josemaría Escrivá's legacy continues to influence the contemporary Catholic Church profoundly, shaping its understanding of work, daily life, spirituality, and the universal call to holiness. His teachings offer practical ways to live out the Gospel in the modern world, making him a significant figure in contemporary Catholic thought and practice.