Message of April 17, at the End of the General Congress

My dear children: may Jesus watch over my daughters and sons for me!

The Extraordinary General Congress has just ended and I want to write to thank you again for your prayers. During these days we have asked in a special way for the help of the Holy Spirit. We have seen clearly once again the ties of filiation and fraternity that unite us, as well as love for the Church and the Holy Father. At the same time, in the moments of family life, it was easy to thank God for so many initiatives of evangelization and service to souls throughout the world. With people from so many countries coming to Rome, it was also natural to keep all of Opus Dei very present, all the cooperators and friends, to pray for one another and, especially, for those of you who live in countries ravaged by war, or by various forms of poverty and need.

During the past few days, your sisters and brothers in the Congress have been able to work in depth on the suggestions coming from all the regions, and a proposal for adjustments to the Statutes was drawn up that responds to the request of the Pope in the motu proprio Ad charisma tuendum, which will be sent to the Holy See in the upcoming months.

As I told you in my previous message, the suggestions that were not applicable to what the Holy See was asking for now can be studied during the next Work Weeks and in preparation for the next Ordinary General Congress, which will be held in 2025. As I also told you, unlike other congresses in which some apostolic priorities are set, the sole purpose in this case was to prepare the aforementioned proposal. Therefore the final result can only be known after the Holy See, which has the final word, has reviewed it.

In our work during these days, we have been guided by two fundamental criteria: fidelity to the charism that Saint Josemaría received on October 2, 1928, and filial adherence to the will expressed by the Holy Father. As requested by the Pope in his motu proprio, efforts have been made to express more clearly the charismatic dimension of the Work (cf. Ad charisma tuendum, no. 4), which is lived and carried out in communion with the particular churches and with the Bishops presiding over them. The Prelature of Opus Dei is a family that is the result of bonds of paternity, filiation and fraternity.

These days of the congress have been marked by an atmosphere of serenity and also good humor, and by the active participation of everyone. Each has been able to express themselves with complete freedom, both in the working groups and in the plenary sessions. In addition, I want to emphasize that, when studying the suggestions, a great harmony has been noticed among many people from very diverse backgrounds, and with a varied formation and culture. It has been an eloquent manifestation of unity in the “gift of the Spirit received by Saint Josemaría” (Ad charisma tuendum, preamble).

Rome, April 17, 2023

Romana, n. 76, January-June 2023, p. 78-79.

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