The Prelate of Opus Dei had the opportunity to meet with faithful of the Prelature living in Rome. The get-togethers were held in ELIS, a formative center for workers located in the Tiburtino district in Rome. Among other things, Monsignor Fernando Ocáriz invited those present to take advantage of the liturgical season of Advent that has just begun. “Your whole day should in some way be like the time of Advent, a time of expectation, a time to foster the desire to find Christ.” The Advent season, he said, is an especially good time for trying to be more concerned about others and less concerned about oneself.
Our work should become service to others: “We can convert our work into apostolate, into help for others. We may find ourselves pressed for time, but we can always find an opportunity to smile at someone or exchange a few words. A person who works well is concerned about others.”
Franco, the father of a family, read a poem written by his grandmother about the happy and also the difficult moments found in family life, especially between husband and wife. “To be faithful,” the Prelate said, replying to a request from Franco for advice, “one needs to understand very well what love is. Faithfulness is perseverance in love, which has two key aspects: desiring union with the other person and, above all, desiring the other person’s good. Many people think that loving involves only the first part. But we have to renew our love each day, loving the others with their limitations and defects.”
Francesca, a twenty-one year old student, asked him how we can live the present moment well by putting the future in God’s hands. The Prelate stressed that “it is in the present moment where God is waiting for us.”
One of the people present asked him about the role of supernumeraries in Opus Dei. “You have to feel that Opus Dei is your own,” the Prelate said, addressing the supernumerary faithful there. “Each of you is just as much Opus Dei as the Prelate. The Work is a living reality, as Saint Josemaria used to say, and therefore you can’t remain passive waiting for someone to tell you what to do. You supernumeraries are not simply people who 'collaborate' intensely with Opus Dei. Each of you, wherever you are, has the entire Work in your hands. Therefore you have to be inventive in suggesting new ways to bring Jesus to everyone around you.”