14 Public Life and Apostolate

"Greater love has no man than this,
    that a man lay down his life for his friends.
No longer do I call you servants,
    for the servant
    does not know what his master is doing;
but I have called you friends,
    for all that I have heard from my Father I have made known to you.
You did not choose me,
    but I chose you
    and appointed you
    that you should go and bear fruit
    and that your fruit should abide;
    so that whatever you ask the Father in my name,
    he may give it to you."
(Jn 15:13, 14-16)

"There are no secrets between friends:
Christ tells us all that he hears from the Father;
he gives us his full trust and with trust, also knowledge.
He reveals his face and his heart to us.
He shows us the tenderness he feels for us,
    his passionate love
    that goes even as far as the folly of the Cross.
He entrusts himself to us,
he gives us the power to speak in his name:
    "This is My body , "I forgive you He entrusts his Body, the Church, to us. ...
Thank you, Jesus, for your friendship!"
(Joseph Card. Ratzinger, Homily Pre-conclave Mass, 18 April 2005)

"How much there is to love today!
How great a need for love is felt in all classes of people!
You have a marvelous task to accomplish:
    you can love, help, lift up, comfort and enlighten
    with the divine 'grace' which always accompanies you."
(John Paul II, Homily, Mass at Castel Gandolfo
for more than three hundred participants
in Opus Dei's summer formation courses, Sunday, 28 August 1983)

"If we were truly Christian
    there would not be a single pagan left."

"One loving heart sets another on fire."
(St Augustine)

The apostolate is "an overflow of your life within" (St Josemaria):
it is an overflow not only of the life of prayer,
but of our charity,
    our hope,
    our faith,
    our fortitude,
    our temperance,
    our prudence,
    our justice
in other words,
it springs from the abundance of the graces
    we receive through the sacraments
and from the virtues that we strive to practice
at home, at work, at play,
or in any other place where we live our lives
    as loving children of such a loving Father in heaven.

"[R]eturn to your work
    with renewed resolution
    to live intensely your spiritual life:
- may your light always shine
    with a total and convinced orthodoxy of Christian and Catholic doctrine,
    with humility and courage,
    in the perfect competence of your professional activity;
- may you be bearers of peace,
    with your love for all,
    based on understanding, respect, sensitivity and patience,
    knowing that every man bears within himself
    his own suffering and his own mystery;
- may you be, finally, sowers of joy
    with your practical charity
    and your serene abandonment to Providence,
    remembering what Pope John Paul I so affably said
    "Remember that God always has his eyes upon us,
    even when it seems to be night." (10 September 1978.)"
(John Paul II, Homily at Mass in the Audience Hall at Castel Gandolfo
for over three hundred university teachers and students of Opus Dei
from various Italian universities, 19 August 1979)

"'Rise, Let us be on our Way!', is the title of his next-to-last book.
'Rise, let us be on our way!'
-- with these words he roused us from a lethargic faith,
    from the sleep of the disciples of both yesterday and today.
'Rise, let us be on our way!', he continues to say to us even today."
(Card. Ratzinger, Homily, Funeral of Pope John Paul II, 8 April 2005)

"Dear young people, go confidently to meet Jesus!
And, just like the new saints,
    do not be afraid to speak about Him!
Because Christ is the true answer to all the questions about man and his destiny.
It is necessary that you young people become apostles of your peers.
I know very well that this is not easy.
Many times you will be tempted to say like the prophet Jeremiah:
    fA a a, Lord! I do not know how to speak, because I am a child. (Jer 1:6)
Do not be discouraged, because you are not alone:
the Lord will never cease to be with you, with his grace and the gift of his Spirit."
(John Paul II, Homily, To the Youth, 3 May 2003, Madrid, Spain)

Queen of Apostles,
    intercede for us.
Holy Spirit,
    enkindle in us the fire of Your love.
Move us,
    inspire us,
    set us aflame,
    so that we may lead others to the Father
    with the clear light of faith,
    the encouraging flame of hope,
    and the warmth of human and supernatural charity.