Friends of God

First published in 1977, this is the first posthumous work of St. Josemaria. Collecting in one volume 18 homilies given between 1941-68, the book seeks to lead the reader to a deeper friendship with the "God who is close to us."

The author's filial dialogue with God is guided by his reflections on a number of human and supernatural virtues. Over 400,000 copies have been sold. It has been published in 13 languages.

Bishop Alvaro del Portillo writes in the foreword: "In this second volume of homilies we have gathered together some texts that were published while Msgr. Escrivá de Balaguer was still with us here on earth, and others from the many which he left for later publication, because he worked unhurriedly and kept working to the end.

"These eighteen homilies present a broad picture of the basic human and Christian virtues for all who wish to follow closely in the footsteps of our Lord…With Msgr. Escrivá de Balaguer words turn into a colloquy with God - prayer - but without ceasing to be a heartfelt conversation completely in tune with the concerns and hopes of his listeners. The homilies contain living doctrine and combine a theologian's depth with the evangelical clarity of a good shepherd of souls. They are, therefore, a lesson in doctrine and in Christian life in which God is not only spoken of but spoken to. Perhaps this is the secret of his great power of communication, because he is always speaking about the Love of God: looking at God without needing rest or feeling tired.

"Together with a great simplicity, there runs through all these writings the constant counterpoint of a passionate, expansive love. The path to sanctity that St. Josemaria invites us to take is paved with a deep respect for freedom. The Founder of Opus Dei relished those words of St Augustine where the great Bishop of Hippo stresses that God 'judged that his servants would be better if they served him freely.'"

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