Statements on Josemaría Escrivá by Catholic leaders

A selection of statements about the founder of Opus Dei from Catholic leaders around the world.

Cardinal Francis George, Archbishop of Chicago (St. Mary of the Angels Church, Chicago, January 9, 2002)

"A hundred years ago today, Josemaría Escrivá was born—a man who fell in love with the Lord, whom he recognized in faith as our Savior and the Savior of the world, a man who was called by Jesus to the work of a preacher of God’s Word, and a fisherman—an evangelizer."

Rev. Brian Kolodiejchuk, M.C., Postulator of the Cause of the Canonization of Mother Teresa of Calcutta (Rome, February 26, 2002)

“The variety of charisms and characters of the saints of the Church is remarkable. But when you get to know the life and spirit of each one, you discover a common denominator that unites them: being an image of Christ, the Saint par excellence. This is the case of two of the greatest saints of the 20th Century, Blessed Josemaría and Mother Teresa. Among the things they have in common, I would have to mention their love for the Church, the Pope, sacramental confession…. In both the founder of Opus Dei and Mother Teresa, the root of their commitment was their faith, which led them to discover Christ in each person.”

Archbishop Adam Exner, Vancouver (Holy Rosary Cathedral, January 9, 2002)

"I deeply feel that Blessed Josemaría is a special gift to the Church and to the world of our times. I believe that his charism is particularly relevant for our world of today."

Msgr. Ricardo Ruotolo, Director of the Casa Sollievo dell Sofferenza and Gerardo Di Flumeri, Vice-postulator of the Cause for the Canonization of Padre Pio (S. Giovanni Rotondo, April 26, 2002)

“We thank our Lord for the gift his holiness John Paul II has wanted to bestow on us this year with the graces of the canonizations of Blessed Padre Pio and Blessed Josemaría Escrivá. This happy coincidence presents these extraordinary figures of the 20th century for veneration by the faithful all over the world and singles them out as spiritual guides and witnesses."

Cardinal Jaime Sin, Archbishop of Manila (Cathedral of Manila, January 9, 2002)

“More important than the many miraculous cures are the countless interior conversions attributed to his intercession. So many people were moved by Blessed Josemaría's message of discovering God in the circumstances of ordinary life. Blessed Josemaría is indeed a powerful intercessor before God. I encourage you to turn to him for your spiritual and material needs.”

Cardinal Christoph Schönborn, Archbishop of Vienna (Vienna Cathedral, January 9, 2002)

“God has given man the power to shape reality. Blessed Josemaría took this fundamental message to task: work, understood not only as a means of self-fulfillment, but also of sanctity.”

Cardinal Cahal B. Daly, Archbishop Emeritus of Armagh, Ireland (Church of the Holy Rosary, Dublin, January 9, 2002)

"The truths brought out by Josemaría Escrivá are as old as the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and yet as new as the post-modern age of the new millennium. They are wide-ranging, but one may single out some of the core principles. Escrivá reiterated the New Testament teaching that every Christian is called to be a saint."

Cardinal Antonio María Rouco, Archbishop of Madrid (Cathedral of Almudena, Madrid, January 9, 2002)

“We give thanks to the Lord and ask, God willing, that in this year we may soon see the day when the Church canonizes Blessed Josemaría.”

Archbishop George Pell of Sydney (St. Mary’s Cathedral, Sydney, January 4, 2002)

"Blessed Josemaría considered himself an 'inept and deaf instrument,' saw himself when an old man 'as a stammering child.' I pray to the good God that he will raise up among us many other men and women, who are equally 'inept and deaf,' and who allow God to work in and through them as He wishes."

Cardinal Joachim Meisner, Archbishop of Cologne (Cathedral of Cologne, January 19, 2002)

“Beatifications and canonizations are a de-privatization of the person, who becomes part of the common heritage of the Church. Blessed Josemaría is and always will be the founder of Opus Dei, but he now belongs to all of us in the Church. Therefore, we all rejoice with the members of Opus Dei because he will soon be canonized.”

Carla Cotignoli, the Focolari Movement (Rome, February 26, 2002)

"We share the great joy of Opus Dei at the canonization of Msgr. Escrivá. As the Pope has said so many times: 'Charisms are a gift of God and a hope for mankind.' The charism of the founder of Opus Dei, which is the search for holiness in work and ordinary life, is becoming even more a patrimony of the whole Church."

Cardinal Jean-Marie Lustiger, Archbishop of Paris, France (Church Saint-Honoré d' Eylau, Paris, January 8, 2002)

"Josemaría Escrivá is one of those timeless figures who shows the attentive observer what the Spirit is carrying out in the Church."

Cardinal Norberto Rivera, Archbishop Primate of Mexico (Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe, Mexico City, January 9, 2002)

“This long awaited announcement has filled the whole world with joy, and especially us Mexicans. I am also happy that Our Lady of Guadalupe has again united Juan Diego and Josemaría Escrivá: both pilgrims of Tepeyac with a great love for Our Lady. She has united them on their path to the altars, since they were both declared Venerable on the same day in 1990, when the decrees on their heroic virtues were recognized.”

Bishop Juan José Omella, Barbastro, Spain (Barbastro, native city of Blessed Josemaría, December 22, 2001)

“This event brings with it a great joy and pride for the city in which he learned the Christian faith; it is a motive of profound satisfaction for the diocesan Church. It is also a stimulus for those who live in this diocese because it reminds us that we are all called to holiness, which is an attainable goal.”

Dr. Giancarlo Cesana, Communion and Liberation (Rome, February 26, 2002)

“'All work is an occasion for sanctity'. In this phrase of Blessed Josemaría's, which is at the same time an affirmation and a proposal, I feel the attraction and the force of Christianity, which is an experience that transforms and gives meaning to all the circumstances of our lives, even those that are routine or prosaic.”

Cardinal Franz König, Emeritus Bishop of Vienna (December 21, 2001)

“Escrivá belongs to the treasury of the Church…. I met Blessed Escrivá de Balaguer in Rome during the Second Vatican Council. He was a man who transmitted an enormous greatness of spirit. He was interested in the Council, and I heard he traveled vastly and was interested also in the apostolate of lay people. He spoke a lot about what was happening all over the world, and I soon realized that he was an example of the living Church.”