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New Custodian of the Holy Land

May 20, 2016. Friar Francesco Patton is the new Custodian of the Holy Land. He succeeds Fr. Pierbattista Pizzaballa, who was in office for the last 12 years. Friar Francesco Patton is 52 years old from Vigo Meano (Italy). He graduated in Communication Sciences from the Pontifical Salesian University of Rome and until now was the provincial minister of the Order of Friars Minor in Saint Vigilius of Trent.

Beatification for Alvaro del Portillo will take place in Madrid on September 27

2014-01-22

The successor of Saint Josemaría Escrivá will be beatified in Madrid, his native city, and where he met the founder of Opus Dei, and was ordained a priest. Alvalro del Portillo dedicated his life to teaching people how to find God in their everyday lives. 

He also worked in several departments of the Roman Curia, and participated in the Second Vatican Council. Plus, along his life he promoted social initiatives across the globe.

The beatification ceremony is expected for Saturday, September 27. Card. Angelo Amato, the prefect for the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, will lead the ceremony on behalf of the Pope.

The ceremony will cap his beatification process, which started in Rome in March 2004, ten years after his death.

Alvaro del Portillo studied civil engineering. He was among the first to follow St. Josemaría Escrivá, and soon became one of his closest collaborators. In 1944, he was ordained a priest, and two years later left for Rome.

After the death of St. Josemaría, del Portillo was elected president general of Opus Dei, and after 1982, he was their prelate.

Those who knew him remember him as a person that emanated peace and good humor, and who brought people closer to God.

Few people also know that del Portillo was the leading advocate to install the mosaic of the Virgin Mary that crowns St. Peter's Square. His idea was so well received that John Paul II asked him to oversee it.


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