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"My father is always working"

Paus Benedictus XVI spreekt op deze foto
op 25 december 2005 tot tienduizenden pelgrims die
zich op een regenachtig Sint Pietersplein hadden
verzameld om aanwezig te zijn bij de eerste Urbi et Orbi
van de paus. De paus drong er op aan om eensgezind
te strijden tegen het terrorisme, armoede en de aantasting
van het milieu. Ook riep Benedictus op tot een
‘nieuwe wereldorde’ om de economische ongelijkheid
in de wereld te corrigeren.
(foto: L'Osservatore Romano)

In maart 2002, nam de toen nog kardinaal Joseph Ratzinger deel aan een boekpresentatie in Rome van een boek met de titel Opus Dei – Il Messaggio, le Opere, le Persone (Opus Dei – de boodschap, de werken, de mensen), geschreven door de Italiaanse schrijver Giuseppe Romano. Bij deze gelegenheid gaf de huidige paus Benedictus XVI zijn meest uitgebreide commentaar over de stichter van het Opus Dei. Ratzinger begon met een beschouwing over de naam die de heilige Jozefmaria Escrivá koos voor zijn nieuwe realiteit, “Opus Dei” – Gods Werk, niet de zijne.

While I was pondering this fact, there came to mind the words of the Lord reported in the Gospel of John: "My father is always working." These are words spoken by Jesus in the course of a discussion with some religious specialists who did not want to recognize that God could act even on the Sabbath. This is a debate that is still going on, in a certain way, among people and even Christians of our own time. Some people think that after creation God "retired" and no longer has any interest in our everyday affairs. 

According to this manner of thinking, God could no longer enter into the fabric of our daily life. But the words of Jesus affirm the opposite. A man open to the presence of God discovers that God is always working and still works today: We should, then, let him enter and let him work. And so things are born which open to the future and renew mankind. . . .

In this sense, the theocentrism of Escrivá de Balaguer, in accordance with the words of Jesus, means this confidence in the fact that God has not retired from the world, that God is working now and we ought only to put ourselves at his disposal, to be ready, capable of reacting to his calling. This, for me, is a message of greatest importance. It is a message which leads to overcoming what could be considered the great temptation of our times: the pretense, that is, that after the "big bang," God retired from history. . .

From all this I have better understood the inner character of Opus Dei, this surprising union of absolute fidelity to the Church's great tradition, to its faith, and unconditional openness to all the challenges of this world, whether in the academic world, in the field of work, or in matters of the economy, etc. The person who is bound to God, who has this uninterrupted conversation, can dare to respond to these challenges, and no longer has fear. For the person who stands in God's hands always falls into God's hands. And so fear vanishes, and in its place is born the courage to respond to today's world.

Bron: John L. Allen. Opus Dei. Secrets and Power inside the Catholic Church. Penguin Books, Londen (2005)

 

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