Holiness found in “daily things of life”

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A member of Opus Dei reacts to Pope’s Francis’s teaching on striving for holiness in daily living in his new apostolic exhortation.
Pope Francis’ new apostolic exhortation Gaudete et Exsultate places a significant emphasis on the call to holiness in everyday life and refers to the witness of lay people in a particular way.
This call to imitate Christ in daily activities in the family, marriage and work is exactly the message promoted and lived throughout the world by the Personal Prelature of Opus Dei, founded by Saint Josemaría Escrivá in 1928.
Vatican News' Richard Marsden spoke to Jack Valero, the Communications Director of Opus Dei in the United Kingdom, on his reaction to Gaudete et Exsultate.

Valero said: “This is a wonderful document addressed to everyone, absolutely everyone, and telling them you don’t need to be a special person, or a priest, or a nun, or a pope to strive for holiness. Everybody should strive for holiness and it’s very easy: you just need to want and to allow God to do it in you – the grace of God is always available to everyone.

“It’s in the normal daily things of life that you are going to find that holiness. That really taps into the kind of spirituality that we’ve been talking about for many years in Opus Dei, to the many lay people that come to our activities.”

Valero said Pope Francis outlines the traditional ways of striving for holiness – prayer, fasting and almsgiving – with a particular emphasis on the third of these which involves “looking at the people around us and seeing that they represent Christ for us.”

As well as the importance of works of mercy to those in need, Valero also pointed out that striving for holiness involves “going to work, doing your work well, and relating to your colleagues at work.” He also emphasised the example Pope Francis uses of parents looking after their children. “So every action with regard to daily life with regard to other people is part of this striving for holiness,” Valero added.

Bambino Gesu reiterates offer to care for Alfie Evans

In an interview with the President of the Vatican’s Bambino Gesu pediatric hospital, Mariella Enoc says that the hospital is ready to admit him.

After Pope Francis met with Thomas Evans, Alfies father, the Vatican’s Secretary of State communicated to Dr Mariella Enoc the Pope’s desire that she to do everything possible to bring Alfie to the Rome-based Bambino Gesu pediactric hospital.

Dr Enoc says that the medical staff of Bambino Gesu has been in close contact since last July with the hospital in Liverpool where the 23-month old is currently hospitalized with a rare degenerative brain disease.

After meeting with Alfie’s father on Wednesday, Dr Enoc was struck by his determination to do everything possible to help his son.

In a letter she wrote to the Pope, Dr Enoc expresses her great esteem for the doctors and staff caring for Alfie in Alder Hey Children's Hospital in Liverpool.

What is not being proposed, she says, is to cure Alfie, since his condition is not curable, but to care for him.


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