Promulgation of the Decree on the heroic virtues of the Servant of God Alvaro del Portillo
On June 28, the Holy Father Benedict XVI authorized the Congregation for the Causes of the Saints to promulgate decrees relating to 16 causes of canonizations. Among them was the decree on the heroic virtues of Bishop Alvaro del Portillo (1914-1994), Prelate of Opus Dei. As a result, Bishop del Portillo received the title of Venerable.
On April 2, 2009, the Congregation for the Causes of the Saints had decreed the validity of the informative processes, and on June 12 of that same year had named, as relator of the positio, Father Cristoforo Bove, OFM Conv., who presented it on February 19, 2010. This comprised three volumes (Informatio on the virtues, Summarium and Biographia documentata), with a total of 2,530 pages.
On February 10, 2012, the special Congress of theological consultors of the Congregation for the Causes of the Saints gave a unanimous positive response to the question about the heroic exercise of the virtues by the Servant of God Bishop Alvaro del Portillo.
Upon learning the news, announced by the press office of the Holy See, Bishop Echevarría said:
“The declaration of the heroic virtues of Bishop Alvaro del Portillo is a motive of thanksgiving to God: gratitude for this exemplary pastor who loved our Lord and his Church and those around him, and who prayed for all mankind. He strove at every moment to fulfill faithfully God’s will.
“Don Alvaro is remembered by so many men and women as a person, a priest of peace and loyalty to his commitment of love for God; he was closely united to the Church and the Roman Pontiff. He served St. Josemaría Escrivá with joy and total generosity; his brothers and sisters—later his sons and daughters—in Opus Dei; his relatives; friends and colleagues. With his preaching he helped hundreds of thousands of people from many different countries to which he made pastoral trips to find happiness in faithfulness to Jesus Christ.
“I also have received abundant testimony to the fact that many people go to him all over the world to ask for help for their personal needs, and those of their family, work situation and friends. All unanimously attest that he radiated peace, joy, simplicity, a Christian spirit, and apostolic outlook.”
Romana, n. 54, January-June 2012, p. 124-125.