Power and Mystery

ALBERTO CONTI/CONTRASTO for TIME

KEEPING FAITH Archbishop Julián Herranz, the highest-ranking Opus Dei member in the Roman Curia, says the group has no hidden agenda

This Sunday, Pope John Paul II is set to declare the Spanish-born priest Josemaría Escrivá a saint. The canonization ceremony in St. Peter's Square — expected to draw some 250,000 faithful — will in effect bestow the church's most sacred honor on the movement Escrivá founded in 1928: Opus Dei, the conservative lay group that preaches strict Christian piety as the only path through the storms of modern life. It will be an unusually public moment for an organization that has long been accused of wrapping its power in a shroud of secrecy. And the holy recognition will also fuel...

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