Josemaría Escrivá Obras
51

It is generally believed that, as an organisation, Opus Dei wields considerable economic power. Since Opus Dei does engage in activities in the field of education, social welfare, etc., could you explain how Opus Dei conducts these activities, i.e., how does it obtain funds, how does it coordinate and use them?

In all countries in which it works, Opus Dei does carry out social, educational and welfare projects. They are not, however, its main function. Opus Dei's aim is to help men and women to be good Christians, and therefore witnesses of Christ in the midst of their everyday occupations The activities you mention are directed precisely towards that goal. The effectiveness of all our work is, therefore. based on the grace of God and on a life of prayer, work and sacrifice. But undoubtedly any activity in the field of education or social welfare needs to make use of a certain amount of money.

Each centre is financed in the same way as any other of its type. Student residences, for example, through providing the room and board for the residents, high schools by providing the pupils' tuition, agricultural schools from the sale of their products. But these funds are hardly ever sufficient to cover all the expenses of a centre, especially if you consider that the activities of the Work are all planned with an apostolic outlook and that the majority of them are designed for people with very limited economic resources who, in many cases, pay only, a nominal fee for the training they receive.

Another important source of funds is the members of the Work who donate part of the money they earn through their professional work. But most important of all is the generous support of many who do not belong to Opus Dei but want to contribute to these social and educational undertakings. The personnel in charge make an effort to arouse an apostolic zeal and a social concern which will move many people to collaborate actively. Since the centres are conducted with a high degree of professional competence and are planned to meet actual needs of the community, in most cases the response has been very generous. You probably know that, for example, the Association of Friends of the University of Navarra has some 12,000 members.

The finances of each centre are autonomous. They are operated on an independent basis and look for ways to find the necessary funds among people interested in their activities.

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