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Archbishop Oscar Romero: Letter to the Pope on Escriva's death

Archbishop Oscar Romero

Tags: Canonization, Pope John Paul II, Holiness
A letter written to the Pope by El Salvadorean Bishop Oscar Romero on July 12, 1975, requesting the opening of a cause for St Josemaria’s canonization. Bishop Romero was killed while celebrating Holy Mass in 1980.

"Most Blessed Father,

I regard the still-recent day of the death of Monsignor Josemaria Escriva de Balaguer as contributing to the greater glory of God and to the well-being of souls, and I am requesting of Your Holiness the quick opening of the cause for beatification and canonization of such an eminent priest.

"I had the good fortune of knowing Monsignor Escriva de Balaguer personally and of receiving from him support and fortitude to be faithful to the inalterable doctrine of Christ and to serve with apostolic zeal the Holy Roman Church and this land of Santiago de Maria, which Your Holiness has entrusted to me.

"I have known, for several years now, the work of Opus Dei here in El Salvador, and I can testify to the supernatural sense that animates it and to the fidelity to the ecclesiastical magisterium that characterizes the work.

"Personally, I owe deep gratitude to the priests involved with the Work, to whom I have trusted with much satisfaction the spiritual direction of my life and that of other priests.

"People from all social classes find in Opus Dei a secure orientation for living as sons of God in the midst of their daily family and social obligations. And this is doubtless due to the life and doctrine of its founder.

"In this stormy world overrun by insecurity and doubt, the superb doctrinal fidelity that characterizes Opus Dei is a sign of special grace from God.

"Monsignor Escriva de Balaguer was able to unite in his life a continuous dialogue with Our Lord and a great humanity; one could tell he was a man of God, and his manner was full of sensitivity, kindness, and good humor.

"There are many people who since the moment of his death are privately entrusting him with their needs.

"Most Blessed Father, I humbly repeat my petition for a quick opening of the cause for the beatification and canonization of Monsignor Escriva de Balaguer, for the greater glory of God and for the edification of the Church.

"With filial affection and submission, I kiss Your Ring."


A letter from Archbishop Oscar Romero to to the Pope, dated 12 July 1975; published in Un mar sin orillas, Rialp, 1999.