Vocations

Layman, married, belongs to Opus Dei: "It reminds me that I can do something great with my life".

The prelate of Opus Dei recently recalled that the laity are "the raison d'être of Opus Dei". According to information from the prelature, about 92,000 belong to it. We spoke with one of them about what this path means in his life.

Juan Portela-August 14, 2023-Reading time: 2 minutes

Pablo García-Manzano is a layman who belongs to the Opus DeiHe has been married for 18 years and has 7 children. In this interview with Omnes, he tells us about his vocation within the Work and how he lives his faith in his parish and daily life.

What does it mean to you to be a member of Opus Dei, and how does it influence your life?

-It means for me to know that I am part of a small family within the Church. The call to Opus Dei reminds me, without anything strange, that I am a little child of God and that I can do something great with my life, despite all my failures, and help others to do the same. Especially at work it moves me to try to do well and offer it to God. It also influences my marriage and my family, because it gives it the meaning I mentioned before. I love St. Josemaría's phrase when he told married couples that "your road to heaven" is called by the name of each one's wife.

What is your relationship with the Prelate and with the priests of the Prelature?

-The relationship with the Prelate is very normal, I call him Father as we do in Opus Dei, because I know I can count on his prayer and encouragement to follow this path. I also pray for him. I go to confession regularly with priests of the Prelature, and they also guide me, give me advice, etc. I insist that he is very familiar to me and I remember that when I saw the Prelate for the first time (he was Don Alvaro del Portillo at the time), I felt a great tranquility, as if he had known me for a long time.

What is your relationship with the parish and the bishop where you live?

-I attend Mass in the parish or elsewhere, I'm just one of them. My wife and I know the parish priest, we invited him to tea when he replaced the previous one. The curate celebrated our wedding Mass with another priest. And the same with the bishop: I feel and I am one of the faithful of a huge diocese (archdiocese of Madrid), and when we participate in any celebration where he is, we try to greet him, tell him our names and those of our children. We pray for him every day, as we do in the Work.

How do you participate in the evangelizing mission of the Church?

-It seems to me that it follows from all of the above. On the one hand, it does not imply anything special or added. On the other hand, it changes everything because the way to participate in this evangelizing mission consists simply in trying to show that Jesus Christ is risen, that in spite of my personal failures he loves me; and this, in the midst of my family, friends, work and also of course in the midst of the good and the difficulties of every day. 

Could you add any additional information about yourself?

-I have been married to Monica for 18 years, and we have 7 children. I have been a Lawyer at the Council of State since 2002, although I am currently on leave of absence and I work as a lawyer. A few years ago I made a foray into active politics-administration, in the Ministry of Energy, and I keep a very good memory of that stage. I also worked for 4 years at the IESE business school. I love my job and my familywhich I consider to be my great hobby. I also enjoy good Spanish and English literature and I love classic movies, especially John Ford. Although I am a big fan of the amazing Spanish tennis players of the last years, my dream would be to play against Roger Federer at Wimbledon... and beat him. I'm an Atlético de Madrid fan, despite the odds.

The authorJuan Portela

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