Today is the feast of St. Josemaria Escriva, founder of Opus Dei. As a saint who died less than 50 years ago, many people around the world have found St. Josemaria’s life and writings to be an inspiration in their daily lives. Father Rocky, Executive Director/CEO of Relevant Radio®, is a priest of Opus Dei, and he stopped by Morning Air® recently to discuss this modern saint’s spirituality, charism, and legacy.
“Opus Dei is Latin for the work of God,” Fr. Rocky explained. “It’s a relatively new organization, as the Church goes. It was founded in 1928 in Madrid, Spain by Father Josemaria Escriva, who is now St. Josemaria Escriva.”
Though Father Rocky is a priest of Opus Dei, most of Opus Dei is comprised of lay people. Father Rocky told Morning Air host John Harper, “About 98% of the members of Opus Dei are lay people, and our charism (or special gift from the Holy Spirit) is to discover how to become a saint in the middle of ordinary activities.”
One of the things that makes Opus Dei so diverse is that ordinary activities can look different for different people. But no matter your state in life, your vocation, or your job, your daily activities can help to do the work of God in the world.
“What could be more ordinary than living as a family, or working in business, or teaching in a school?” Fr. Rocky pointed out. “What could be more ordinary than being a husband and a father, or a mother, or a wife, or a child, or a student? And so we have a spirit that allows us to embrace the secular realities of the world.”
Despite being in the world, members of Opus Dei learn from St. Josemaria Escriva how to find and live in the presence of God no matter where they are or what they are doing.
Father Rocky said that Opus Dei helps its members, “To be equipped with this deep and profound sense of the presence of God, no matter where you are. Whether you’re walking down Fifth Avenue in New York, whether you’re in a crowded subway in Brooklyn, whether you’re in O’Hare airport, or you’re riding a tractor in the middle of the field, you know that you’re not alone. So St. Josemaria helps us develop and foster this awareness of God’s presence.”
Living in the presence of God means weaving prayer and the sacraments into the fabric of everyday life. Fr. Rocky explained, “The members of Opus Dei try to get to Mass daily and pray the Rosary every day. They go to Confession regularly and live an interior life, which allows them to be sowers of peace and joy in the middle of the world. And to live with confidence, no matter what the situation is, because they’re very much glued to Christ.”
In that spirit, and in honor of St. Josemaria Escriva’s feast day today, Relevant Radio will feature a special Solemn Mass today at Noon Central Time in honor of this influential saint.
“I’ll celebrate his Mass on June 26 because that’s the day he died, that’s his feast day,” Fr. Rocky said. “And I’m very, very blessed with the support I’ve received from Opus Dei, the spiritual direction, the formation, and all the rest.”
Listen to the full conversation with Father Rocky below, and tune-in to the Solemn Mass in honor of St. Josemaria Escriva today at Noon CT.