Decree of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints by which are recognized the heroic virtues and the reputation for sanctity of the Servant of God Guadalupe Ortiz de Landázuri (May 4, 2016)
CONGREGATIO DE CAUSIS SANCTORUM
BEATIFICATIONIS et CANONIZATIONIS
MARIAE GUADALUPE ORTIZ DE LANDÁZURI
Y FERNÁNDEZ DE HEREDIA
Praelaturae personalis Sanctae Crucis et Operis Dei
DECRETUM SUPER VIRTUTIBUS
«Hilarem enim datorem diligit Deus» (2 Cor 9, 7).
Dei Serva Guadalupe Ortiz de Landázuri y Fernández de Heredia
laeto animo se dedit totam in Dei eiusque Ecclesiae servitium atque divinum amorem fortiter experta est.
Ultima ex quattuor filiis Emmanuelis et Eulogiae, Guadalupe nata est Matriti, in Hispania, die 12 mensis Decembris anno 1916. Pater eius erat praefectus militum quapropter non semel ab uno in aliud locum translatus est et ab anno 1927 usque ad annum 1932 in Africa Septentrionali sedem habuit cum uxore et filia Guadalupe, quae scholam frequentavit Religiosorum Societatis Mariae in civitate Tetuan. Dei Serva a pueritia forti et alacri animo praeditam sese praebuit.
Anno 1933 lycaei studia Matriti complevit seque inscripsit Facultati Chimiae in eiusdem civitatis Universitate. Paulo post initium belli civilis Hispaniae, nempe mense Iulio anno 1936, Servae Dei pater prehensus et capite damnatus est in processu summario. Guadalupe, cum matre sua et fratre, patri solacium afferre potuit ante eius ex pyroballista internecione eumque iuvavit ut christiano spiritu mortem acciperet. Dei Serva eis ignovit qui patris morti causam dederant.
Bello civili ad finem adducto, Guadalupe studiis diligenter incumbere perrexit, et anno 1941 doctoris gradum adepta est atque in lycaeo quodam docere coepit. Die 25 mensis Ianuarii anno 1944 ipsa primo novit Sanctum Iosephmariam Escrivá, Operis Dei conditorem, quem suae vitae spiritualis moderatorem habuit. Ex tunc Dei Serva impensius vitae orationis vacavit et, post aliquos dies recessus spiritualis, die 19 mensis Martii eiusdem anni, postulavit ut, “coelibatum apostolicum” servans, in Opere Dei admitteretur. Ipsa bene intellexit se a Deo vocari ut Ecclesiae Sanctae serviret per laborem amore peractum et per apostolatum in ordinariae vitae adiunctis.
Sanctus Iosephmaria munera eidem concredidit moderandi quaedam Operis Dei incepta evangelizationis Matriti et Bilbai. Mense Octobri anno 1947 Guadalupe in Universitatem rediit, ut doctoratum pervestigationis in Chimia adipisceretur. Exeunte vero anno 1949 ab ea quaesitum est an parata esset ad sese in Mexicum transferendam, ut ibi inchoaret actuositatem apostolicam Operis Dei.
Novo huic muneri Guadalupe cum fiducia et animi ardore sese paravit et die 5 mensis Martii anno 1950 cum duabus aliis Operis Dei mulieribus iter inivit Mexicopolim, ubi, mense Aprili eiusdem anni, ipsae domum paraverunt mulieribus Universitatis alumnis hospitio recipiendis, quae alumnae memoria recolunt humanitatem et deditionem quibus Serva Dei christianam formationem eisdem impertiri curabat. Cum ipsis enim in pauperrimis suburbiis cathechesim pueris tradebat et aegrotis opitulabatur per erraticum quoddam valetudinarium, cui adiutricem operam conferebat Servae Dei amica, quae medici professionem exercebat.
Communi consilio cum Episcopo Tacambarensi promovendis puellis rusticis illius regionis in sociali consortione impense incubuit, curavitque ut ipsae discerent artem quamdam operosam et litterarum ignorantiam debellarent. Vehicula quaecumque adhibens prout ei in promptu erant, in loca dissita se conferebat ut familias inviseret illarum puellarum, mira fortitudine pericula ac difficultates obiens. Cum affectu et patientia magna, iis puellis impertiebatur formationem fundamentalem et humanam et christianam. Hae apostolicae actuositates cito in alias Mexicanae Rei Publicae civitates propagatae sunt. Anno 1952 Guadalupe adiutricem contulit operam ineundis apostolicis inceptis in vetere quodam fundo dicto Montefalco, qui magno cum sacrificio et obtenta multorum cooperatione, conversus est in domum pro recessibus spiritualibus complectentem quoque scholam cum agris colendis necnon centrum formationis professionalis atque alphabeticae institutionis.
Anno 1956 Dei Serva vocata est ut Romam rediret ad adiutricem operam praestandam Sancto Iosephmariae in moderamine apostolatus mulierum Operis Dei. Paucis vero post mensibus Guadalupe gravi cordis aegritudine laboravit, cuius causa, mense Iulio anno 1957, ipsa subire debuit periculosam chirurgicam sectionem. Ab anno 1958 habitavit Matriti, in Hispania, ubi denuo docuit in lycaeo ac deinde in Schola Mulieribus Peritis Industrialibus efformandis. Anno 1965 Guadalupe adepta est doctoratum pervestigationis in Chimia et quidem plenis votis atque addito praemio pro thesi doctorali. Aegra valetudine non obstante, Dei Serva apostolicae actuositati cum puellis sollerter et ardenti animo operam dare perrexit et centrum studiorum de scientiis domesticis necnon alia incepta moderata est.
Ab anno 1970 Dei Servae cardiopatia in peius vertere coepit et die 1 mensis Iulii anno 1975 chirurgicam sectionem valde periculosam subire debuit; dum convalescebat subitanea supervenit crisis, et, die 16 eiusdem mensis et anni, Beatissimae Virgini Mariae de Monte Carmelo dicata, animam Deo piissime reddidit.
Eminent in Dei Serva gaudium quod contagionis instar aliis transmittebat, fortitudo ut ardua quaeque oppeteret, christianus optimismus in difficilibus adiunctis et sui donum ad alios. Fides eius theologalis elucebat praesertim in amore erga Sanctissimam Eucharistiam et in laeta acceptatione voluntatis Dei. Spem colebat annorum decursu temperatam et heroice caritatem exercuit erga Deum et erga proximum. Pietatis exercitia devote colebat et frequenter coram tabernaculo orabat. Divina gratia ducta, ad harmonicam vitae unitatem pervenit et Deo offerebat diversa officia suae vitae quotidianae. Magno affectu Beatissimam Virginem Mariam alloquebatur eamque invocabat praesertim sub titulo de Guadalupe.
Sollicitam se exhibebat erga aliorum necessitates et eadem urbanitate ac comitate erga omnes se gerebat, nempe erga mulieres Universitatis alumnas, puellas rusticas, alumnas scholarum in quibus docuit et amicas.
Parata semper fuit ad agendum in aliorum utilitatem et ad oboediendum. Quamquam multis ornabatur qualitatibus et humanis et professionalibus, numquam tamen se iactavit, immo parata erat ad serviendum aliis et humiliora munera suscipere quaerebat. Sobrie admodum vixit et laeto animo accepit privationes quas frequenter passa est cum apostolica incepta in nova aliqua civitate inchoabat. Tenaciter munera sibi commissa perficiebat et subsicivis temporibus utiliter utebatur, manens tamen semper affabilis et parata ad alios adiuvandos. Cum Servae Dei salus infirma evenit ipsa perseveranter munera sua implere perrexit.
Circa Servae Dei vitam, virtutes ac sanctitatis famam, apud Curiam Archidioecesis Matritensis Inquisitio dioecesana instructa est a die 18 mensis Novembris anno 2001 et clausa die 18 mensis Martii anno 2005; eius iuridica validitas ab hac Congregatione de Causis Sanctorum per decretum diei 17 mensis Februarii anno 2006 approbata est. Exarata Positione, disceptatum est consuetas secundum normas an Serva Dei virtutes heroum in modum exercuisset. Die 7 mensis Iunii anno 2016, positivo cum exitu, Peculiaris Congressus Consultorum Theologorum locum habuit, Patres Cardinales et Episcopi Ordinaria in Sessione diei 2 mensis Maii anno 2017 congregati, me Card. Angelo Amato moderante, Servam Dei heroicum in gradum virtutes theologales, cardinales et adnexas exercuisse agnoverunt.
Facta de hisce omnibus Summo Pontifici Francisco accurata relatione ab infrascripto Cardinali Praefecto, Beatissimus Pater, accipiens rataque habens Congregationis de Causis Sanctorum vota, hodierna die declaravit: Constare de virtutibus theologalibus Fide, Spe et Caritate tum in Deum tum in proximum, necnon de cardinalibus Prudentia, Iustitia, Temperantia, Fortitudine, iisque adnexis in gradu heroico, Servae Dei Mariae Guadalupe Ortiz de Landázuri y Fernández de Heredia, Christifidelis Laicae Praelaturae Sanctae Crucis et Operis Dei, in casu et ad effectum de quo agitur.
Hoc autem Decretum publici iuris fieri et in acta Congregationis de Causis Sanctorum Summus Pontifex referri mandavit.
Datum Romae, die 4 mensis Maii a.D. 2017.
Angelus Card. Amato, S.D.B.
L. + S.
X Marcellus Bartolucci
Archiep. tit. Mevaniensis
The following is our translation of the Decree.
CONGREGATION FOR THE CAUSES OF SAINTS
BEATIFICATION and CANONIZATION
OF THE SERVANT OF GOD
MARIA GUADALUPE ORTIZ DE LANDAZURI
of the Personal Prelature of the Holy Cross and Opus Dei
DECREE ON THE VIRTUES
“God loves a cheerful giver” (2 Cor 9:7).
The Servant of God Guadalupe Ortiz de Landazuri surrendered herself completely and joyfully to God and to the service of his Church, and intensely experienced divine love.
Guadalupe was born in Madrid, Spain, on 12 December 1916. She was the youngest of the four children of Manuel and Eulogia Ortiz. Her father was an army officer and as such was repeatedly posted to different places. From 1927 to 1932 he, Eulogia and Guadalupe lived in North Africa; Guadalupe went to the school run by the religious of the Company of Mary in Tétouan, Morocco. From her childhood onwards, the Servant of God was endowed with a strong, courageous character.
In 1933 she completed her secondary schooling in Madrid and enrolled at Madrid University to study Chemistry. In July 1936, shortly after the outbreak of the Spanish Civil War, her father was arrested and summarily sentenced to death. Guadalupe, her mother and her brother, were able to speak to her father before he was shot, consoling him and helping him to accept death in a Christian spirit. The Servant of God forgave those who had caused her father’s death.
After the Spanish Civil War ended, she continued her studies with great application and diligence. In 1941 she began studying for a doctorate in Chemistry, while teaching at a secondary school. On 25 January 1944 she first met St Josemaría Escrivá, the founder of Opus Dei, who became her spiritual director. From that point on Guadalupe dedicated herself intensely to prayer and, after a spiritual retreat lasting several days, she asked to be admitted to Opus Dei on 19 March that same year, living in apostolic celibacy. She understood clearly that God was calling her to serve Holy Church through work done for love and through apostolate in the circumstances of ordinary life.
St Josemaría put her in charge of some evangelization projects in Madrid and Bilbao. In October 1947 Guadalupe returned to the university to pursue her doctoral studies. At the end of 1949 she was asked whether she would be willing to move to Mexico to begin Opus Dei’s apostolate there.
Guadalupe prepared for this new undertaking with faith and enthusiasm. On 5 March 1950 she and two other women of Opus Dei moved to Mexico City. In April that year they opened a hall of residence for women university students, some of whom still remember the care that the Servant of God dedicated to their Christian formation. With them, she taught catechism classes to children from deprived areas. She also cared for the sick at a mobile clinic she set up with the help of a friend of hers who was a doctor.
In agreement with the Bishop of Tacambaro, she devoted her best efforts to improving the living conditions of the young countrywomen of the area, enabling them to learn manual skills, reading and writing. Despite the precarious means of transport available, she would travel to different locations to visit these young women’s families. She faced dangers and difficulties with admirable fortitude, and showed affection and great patience in providing the young women with basic human and Christian formation. Soon these apostolic activities spread to other townships in Mexico. In 1952 Guadalupe helped with the beginnings of the apostolate being done at an old farming estate called Montefalco. At the cost of great sacrifices, and with the help of many people, the dilapidated estate was transformed into a retreat center, plus a farm-school and a center for job skills training and basic literacy.
In 1956 the Servant of God was called to Rome to help St Josemaría in the governance of the apostolate of the women of Opus Dei. But a few months later Guadalupe fell ill with a serious heart problem, and in July 1957 underwent major surgery. From 1958 onwards she lived in Madrid, Spain, where she taught at a school and afterwards at an industrial training school for women. In 1965 she gained her doctorate in Chemistry and was unanimously awarded a prize for her doctoral thesis. Despite her poor health she continued to dedicate herself with care and enthusiasm to the apostolate with young women. She was also in charge of a catering training center and other projects.
In the early 1970s her heart condition worsened, and on 1 July 1975 she had a high-risk heart operation. During the recovery period she suffered a sudden crisis and on 16 July, the feast of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, she devoutly surrendered her soul to God.
Guadalupe’s outstanding characteristics were her contagious cheerfulness, her fortitude in the face of adversity, her Christian optimism in difficult circumstances, and her self-giving to others. Her theological faith shone out in her love for the Blessed Eucharist and her joyous acceptance of God’s Will. She cultivated the virtue of hope, constantly refining and purifying it with the passage of time. She practiced charity for God and her neighbor to a heroic degree. She put great piety into devotional exercises and would often spend time in prayer before the Tabernacle. Impelled by divine grace, she achieved a harmoniously unified life and offered all the various tasks of her daily life to God. She prayed with love and affection to the Blessed Virgin Mary, especially under the advocation “Our Lady of Guadalupe”.
She had a lively concern for the needs of others. She treated university students, farm-girls, schoolgirls and her friends with the same sensitivity and friendliness.
She was always ready to be useful to others and to obey. She was endowed with many human and professional gifts, but never boasted of them; on the contrary, she was quick to serve others and chose the humblest tasks for herself. She lived with great sobriety and cheerfully accepted the privations she often encountered on beginning the apostolate in a new place. She carried out the tasks entrusted to her with tenacity and perfection, and used her free time on worthwhile occupations, being approachable and always ready to make herself available. When she fell ill, she did all she could to persevere in fulfilling her duties.
The diocesan process concerning her life, virtues and reputation for holiness was carried out in the Curia of the Archdiocese of Madrid. It opened on 18 November 2001 and was concluded on 18 March 2005. The Congregation for the Causes of Saints issued a decree of its validity on 17 February 2006. Once the Positio had been completed, the next stage, according to the established procedure, was to examine whether the Servant of God had practiced the virtues heroically. On 7 June 2016 the special Congress of theological consultors took place, and answered this question in the affirmative. The Cardinals and Bishops, in an ordinary session held on 2 May 2017, presided by myself, Cardinal Angelo Amato, recognized that Guadalupe had exercised the theological, cardinal and related virtues to a heroic degree.
The undersigned Cardinal Prefect presented to the Supreme Pontiff Pope Francis a detailed account of all the phases listed above. The Holy Father, receiving and ratifying the evaluation of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, with today’s date, has solemnly declared that: Proofs exist of the theological virtues of Faith, Hope and Charity, towards both God and neighbor, and also of the cardinal virtues of Prudence, Justice, Temperance and Fortitude, with their annexed virtues, in heroic degree, of the Servant of God Maria Guadalupe Ortiz de Landazuri, laywoman of the Prelature of the Holy Cross and Opus Dei, according to the requirements of the case.
The Holy Father has ordered that this Decree be published and transcribed in the Acts of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints.
Given at Rome, on the 4th day of the month of May in the year of Our Lord 2017.
ANGELO CARDINAL AMATO, S. D. B.
L. + S.
X MARCELLO BARTOLUCCI
Titular Archbishop of Bevagna
Romana, n. 64, January-June 2017, p. 45-52.