Looks of surprise come my way when people learn of my devotion to St. Josemaría Escrivá (1902-1975), the Spanish priest who founded Opus Dei. What might be even stranger is that I would write a book highlighting his role as a spiritual “coach.”
Since I am a religious priest, a Norbertine, it might seem odd that I would find inspiration and guidance from a saint whose hallmarks include secularity and lay holiness, finding God in the midst of the world and not in a monastery. Now, I live in a monastery. I can tell you that God is here and may be found here by anyone with even a marginal interest in finding Him. Monasteries make it easy to find Him. They exist for that reason: Not only are they places for living the vowed life, consecrated to prayer for the Church and world, but they also stand as beacons to attract anyone and everyone, with or (as yet) without faith, to find the Lord.
What does St. Josemaría Escrivá have to do with all of this?
When we look to the saints for inspiration, we should focus mainly on how they responded to God in their lives. Everything else, it seems to me, is secondary to that. What did their “yes” look like? Did they ever struggle or resist His will? Where did their surrender lead them, and what fruits did that surrender yield? These are daily questions for all Christians, and daily points of examination of conscience for those who, like me, are especially consecrated to His service.
I know how to answer these questions for St. Josemaría: His surrender to God led him to attract multitudes of people from all walks of life to follow the Lord in daily and professional life, without change of location or profession, but with structure, discipline and the intentionality to grow in holiness by means of the work and relationships of their state in life.
Fr. John Henry’s book, “Coached by Josemaría Escrivá” is available through Scepter Publishers or from Amazon.
From OC Catholic