Sanctification of the World:On Josemaría Escrivá's View of Sanctification Practice


Author: PENG Huanhuan, Ph.D. candidate, School of Philosophy and Religious Studies, Minzu University of China.


In the Catholic tradition of sanctification, the way of practicing sanctification is clearly defined, from separation from the secular world to solitary seclusion in the wilderness to the formation of the monastic tradition, all of which detach sanctification from secular life, with monastics being the subjects of sanctification practice. It was not until the 20th century, with the rise of Secular Institutes that secular consecrated groups were recognized by the Catholic Church for their work in sanctifying the secular. This represents an important change in the Catholic Church’s understanding of the view of sanctification practice, from an emphasis on monastic life to affirmation of the Secular Institutes. This paper will describe historic changes in the Catholic view of sanctification by examining the views on the practice of sanctification of the founder of Opus Dei, Josemaría Escrivá. Influenced by Vatican l, the prevailing view of sanctification overemphasized the transcendence of grace beyond history, which resulted in a separation between grace and nature, sacred and secular. This paper argues that the restoration of the grace received from the sacrament of baptism and the presence of Christ in the sacrament of the eucharist are the foundation and summit of sanctification. At the same time, the separation between grace and nature, the sacred and the secular can be bridged by a combination of prayer and secular work, and allow more laity to participate in the practice of sanctification.


Sanctification of the World, Josemaría Escrivá, practice of sanctification, laity

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