by Edd Doerr
Opus Dei, Latin for "The Work of God", is a strange, secretive cultlike outfit within the Catholic Church, though most Catholics take a dim view of it. I have written about it for years and piles of books have been published about it, pro and con. If you read Dan Brown's thriller novel "The Da
Vinci Code" or saw the move of it with Tom Hanks you got a scary but inaccurate picture of it. In just recent months the Catholic bishop of Kansas City, Robert Finn, an Opus Dei member, was convicted of covering up clerical child sexual abuse. It has not been established but some people believe that justices Scalia and Thomas may be members.
Opus Dei was founded in 1928 by Msgr Josemaria Escriva de Balaguer and became powerful in Spanish politics in Franco's later years. It operate in the US and many other countries and is ultraconservative. Long ago I read Escriva's Opus Dei book Camino (The Way) in the original Spanish and found it quite bizarre. In the 1970s inrerviewed an Opus bigshot for an article in Church & State when I was its edtor.
My purpose here is to plug the Opus Dei Awareness Network (ODAN), based in Pittsfield, MA. Their web site -- ODAN.ORG -- has more info on this outfit than you can find anywhere. I urge you to check it out.