Devotion throughout the world
A Statue of St. Josemaría in the Corpus Christi Procession of Elche
On June 9 the images for the new Corpus Christi Tabernacle were shown for the first time at the Eucharistic procession celebrated for the feast. They are made of silver and are about a foot high. Among other saints, there are four saints from the last two centuries: St. Josemaría Escrivá, St. John Bosco, St. Candida Maria de Jesus, and the Blessed Francisco Palau.
St. Josemaría Escrivá and Blessed John Paul II in the Basilica
of Santa Engracia in Saragossa
The basilica-parish of Santa Engracia, in Saragossa, Spain, now has two new statues: that of St. Josemaría Escrivá and that of Blessed John Paul II. Molded in bronze, the life-sized statues have been installed in the sanctuary of the Church.
The blessing of the statues took place on July 1. At the request of Archbishop Manuel Ureña of Saragossa, the Prelate of Opus Dei presided over the ceremony. In the Mass which followed, two bishops emeritus, Carmelo Borobia and José Luis Redrado, joined Archbishop Ureña and Bishop Echevarría as concelebrants.
St. Josemaría and Ovindoli
Ovindoli, a town in the region of Abruzzo, Italy (the site since the 60s of the Casale delle Rocche conference center directed by faithful of Opus Dei) has dedicated a plaza to St. Josemaría. The inauguration ceremony took place on the afternoon of October 1, with the participation of Bishop Pietro Santoro of Marsi, the Prelate of Opus Dei, and the mayor of Ovindoli.
In his address Mayor Pino Angelosante expressed his gratitude for the work carried out for more than forty years by the Centro Elis Association, on which Casale delle Rocche depends, and particularly for its role after the 2009 earthquake in coordinating various initiatives in assistance of the local population: providing aid to children and elderly who lost their homes; installing a multimedia classroom in the Ovindoli school and a language laboratory in the nearby town of Rocca di Mezzo; repairing the heating system in the parish; obtaining scholarships for young people, etc.
Michele Crudele, director of Rome’s Centro Elis, recalled briefly the history of the Casale Antico (the old villa) the first building of the present complex, which was almost in ruins when it was donated by a benefactor, Alessandro Gerini, and the history of the Casale delle Roche constructed in the 90s. The Casale Antico, after its renovation by volunteers from Centro Elis, began to be used as a center for formative activities in 1967. Some years later, that small building was honored by a brief stay by John Paul II, who lodged there during one of his excursions to Abruzzo.
The Prelate of Opus Dei, in turn, recalled the first time St. Josemaría passed through that small plaza, where the highway that runs through Ovindoli makes an abrupt curve. It was in November 1949, on a trip from L’Aquila on the way back to Rome. As he always used to do, he prayed for all the people living there.
Finally, the Bishop of Marsi, the diocese to which Ovindoli belongs, expressed his appreciation for the formative, social and charitable work that the Centro Elis carries out in the area, and had words of ardent thanks for the founder of Opus Dei.
The addresses were followed by a moment of prayer, and then the unveiling of a bas-relief of St. Josemaría with a commemorative plaque.
The day ended in the auditorium of Casale delle Rocche with the showing of a filmed catechetical get-together with St. Josemaria in Brazil in 1974, and the testimony of Maria Rita Ronchetti, one of those who in 1964 began the SAFI school of hotel management in Rome, also sponsored by the Centro Elis Association.
A Commemorative Stone for the Fortieth Anniversary of St. Josemaría’s Stay in the Colegio El Prado, in Madrid
On October 1 a stone plaque was blessed and inaugurated commemorating the 40th anniversary of the visit of St. Josemaría to the El Prado School. Presiding over the ceremony was Fr. Pedro Alvarez de Toledo, Vicar of the Delegation of Opus Dei in West Madrid.
Attending the ceremony were parents, administrators, professors, employees of the center, and alumni. Some of the parents had been students when St. Josemaría held a get-together in El Prado on October 17, 1972, and now have sons who are studying or have studied there. The parents made a video for the website www.opusdei.es expressing their gratitude for the influence that St. Josemaría’s teachings on the family, marriage and the education of children have had on their lives.
A Reliquary in Carigliano Calabro
On October 13, many inhabitants of the city of Corigliano Calabro welcomed, in the church of Mary Immaculate, a reliquary of St. Josemaría Escrivá. At the Mass celebrated by Fr. Alfonso Guijarro, a priest of the Opus Dei Prelature, the city’s mayor and the entire city council were present.
On the shores of Lake Garda
On November 16 Delia Castellini, mayor of Toscolano-Maderno sul Garda in northern Italy, and the Vicar General of the diocese of Brescia, Msgr. Gianfranco Mascher, inaugurated a movable pedestrian bridge over the Toscolano River and a new public recreational path a half-mile in length along the shores of Lake Garda, both dedicated to St. Josemaría. Following some words by the mayor and Msgr. Mascher, Roberto Zambiasi, who was born in Toscolano-Maderno and now resides in Milan, spoke to the residents of his native town about the Founder of Opus Dei, whom he knew personally.
Following the ceremony, a film of a catechetical gathering with St. Josemaría was held in the conference room of the local parish. In honor of Pope Francis, the organizers chose one of the get-togethers in Buenos Aires in 1974.
Romana, No. 57, July-December 2013, p. 276-278.