Pope Francis writes a motu proprio to protect the charism with the reforms of Opus Dei

Pope Francis wrote the Apostolic Letter in the form of a “Motu Proprio” entitled “Ad charisma tuendum” (“To protect the charisma”) in which he established some reforms to the personal Prelature of Opus Dei, among them, that the Prelate will not be a Bishop.

This new Motu Proprio was signed by the Pope on July 14 and released by the Holy See Press Office on July 22.

In “To protect the charism” the Pope develops and concretizes the change produced by the Apostolic Constitution “Preach the Gospel”which transferred the competences in matters of personal prelatures from the Dicastery of the Bishops to that of the Clergy.

After the publication of the Apostolic Constitution “Praedicate Evangelium” on March 19, the Prelate of Opus Dei, Msgr. Fernando Ocáriz, sent a message to the faithful of the Prelature in the who explained that “Cchanges the ordinary interlocutor with the Holy See” since “Many of the matters that the Prelature habitually deals with the Roman Curia are related to its presbytery” However, on that occasion Don Fernando warned that “the substance of the Prelature of Opus Dei, made up of laity and priests, women and men, is not modified at all, as established in the Statutes that the Apostolic See gave to the Work”.

“On the Solemnity of Saint Joseph, Patron of the Universal Church, we entrust to the Lord the service that the Roman Curia renders to the Church and to the world. Let us also ask God that each lay person and each priest, each woman and each man of Opus Dei know how to live with an evangelizing attitude, with optimism, offering our friendship to all people and seeking above all friendship with Jesus Christ”, Bishop Ocáriz wrote then. .

“To protect the charisma”

In the text of this new apostolic letter, Pope Francis pointed out that this change is made to “To protect the charism, my predecessor Saint John Paul II, in the Apostolic Constitution Let it be, of November 28, 1982, erected the Prelature of Opus Dei, entrusting it with the pastoral task of contributing in a peculiar way to the evangelizing mission of the Church.

In addition, article 3 of the Motu Proprio described that due to changes in the Apostolic Constitution Ut sit, the statutes of Opus Dei will be updated “at the proposal of the Prelature itself, to later be approved by the competent bodies of the Apostolic See.”

For its part, Opus Dei explained that the fact that the Prelate will not be a Bishop “is an initiative and decision of the Holy See, within the framework of a restructuring of the government of the Curia, to reinforce – as the Motu Proprio says – the charismatic dimension”.

Along these lines, an official communication from the Prelature stressed that “the figure of the Prelate is given an honorary title and a treatment that, reaffirming the secular condition -which is central to the charism of Opus Dei-, unites him in a special way to the Holy Father, as part of the so-called ‘pontifical family’. It is said ‘supernumerary’, to distinguish it from those who are notaries in the Holy See”.

Letter to the faithful of Opus Dei

LikewiseBishop Fernando Ocáriz wrote this July 22 a letter to the faithful of the Prelature in which he insisted that “it is a concretion of the decision of the Holy Father to frame the figure of the personal prelatures in the Dicastery of the Clergy, which we affiliately accept”.

Later, Don Fernando highlighted that Pope Francis “encourages us to pay attention to the gift that God gave to Saint Josemaría, in order to live it fully” and urges care for the charism of Opus Dei “to promote the evangelizing action carried out by its members” and, in this way, “spread the call to holiness in the world, through the sanctification of work and family occupations and social”.

For this reason, the Prelate asks “that this invitation from the Holy Father resonate strongly in each and every one” because “it is an occasion to deepen the spirit that the Lord instilled in our founder and to share it with many people in the environment family, work and social.

Finally, Bishop Ocáriz commented that “regarding the provisions of the Motu proprio on the figure of the Prelate, I repeat what I have pointed out to you on other occasions: we thank God for the fruits of ecclesial communion that the episcopates of Blessed Álvaro have meant. and don Javier” and added that “at the same time, the episcopal ordination of the Prelate was not and is not necessary for the guidance of Opus Dei”.

“The Pope’s willingness to underline now the charismatic dimension of the Work invites us to strengthen the atmosphere of family, affection and trust: the prelate must be a guide, but, above all, a father”, concluded the Prelate of Opus Dei.