IN LOVE WITH THE CHURCH
“The Catholic Church is Roman. I savor that word, Roman! I feel completely Roman, since Roman means universal, catholic. For it leads me to love tenderly the Pope, il dolce Cristo in terra, as Saint Catherine of Siena, whom I count as a most beloved friend, liked to repeat.
“‘From this catholic Roman center,’ Paul VI emphasized in the closing stages of the Second Vatican Council, ‘no one is, in theory, beyond reach; all can and should be reached. For the Catholic Church, no one is a stranger, no one is excluded, no one is to consider himself far away.’ I venerate with all my strength the Rome of Peter and Paul, bathed in the blood of martyrs, the center from which so many have set out to propagate throughout the world the saving word of Christ. To be Roman does not entail any manifestation of provincialism, but rather of authentic ecumenism. It presupposes the desire to enlarge the heart, to open it to all men with the redemptive zeal of Christ, who seeks all men and takes in all men, for he has loved all men first.
“Saint Ambrose wrote a few words which comprise, as it were, a song of joy: ‘Where Peter is, there is the Church; and where the Church is, not death, but eternal life reigns.’ For where Peter and the Church are, there Christ is; and he is salvation, the only way.”
ST. JOSEMARIA ESCRIVA
In Love with the Church, no. 11
This year, 2016, marks the 30th anniversary of the publication of In Love with the Church by St. Josemaria Escriva. The Rome Experience follows the Congregation for the Clergy’s Directory for the Ministry and the Life of the Priests, and is inspired by the thought and work of St. Josemaria Escriva, founder of Opus Dei, who dedicated many years of his life to caring for the spiritual and human needs of diocesan priests, and remains a spiritual guide for many priests today.