The Traditionalist Catholic Remnant editor Michel Matt has shown his problems with "the 'conservative' 'watchdog of orthodoxy', Opus Dei" saying "Meanwhile, back at the Circle O (Opus Dei, that is), it's business as usual... As long as they have their pristine place in the Church with tons of money and are left alone, they will cheerlead whatever The Argentinian [Francis] says.":
Yes, that's right-- the "conservative" "watchdog of orthodoxy", Opus Dei, our sentry at the gate, is still keeping the sheeple in the dark about what's really going on here. As a friend recently noted, "They will not only go along with, but boldly champion whatever the man in white says, no matter what. They willfully ignore all problems--including heresy, approving adultery, banning death penalty, not answering credible sex abuse cover up allegations--the whole nine yards. As long as they have their pristine place in the Church with tons of money and are left alone, they will cheerlead whatever The Argentinian says." [https://remnantnewspaper.com/web/index.php/headline-news-around-the-world/item/4095-opus-dei-promoting-pope-farrell-s-synod-on-young-people]
The popular Catholic blogger Laramie Hirsch said that Opus Dei is Cult-like and apparently its promoters such as Michael Voris and One Peter Five publisher Eric Sammons are refusing to look at the evidence that their beloved Francis may be an antipope because of possible Opus Dei monetary support (It appears that Opus Dei Promoter 1P5 Publisher Sammons would not let Hammer of Antipopes St. Bernard write for One Peter Five). Hirsch shows that their name calling appears to not be supported by the theological facts:
“Finally, one cannot consider as schismatics
those who refuse to obey the Roman Pontiff because they would hold his
person suspect or, because of widespread rumors, doubtfully elected (as
happened after the election of Urban VI), or who would resist him as a
civil authority and not as pastor of the Church.”
(Wernz-Vidal, Ius Canonicum [Rome: Gregorian 1937], 7:398,)
Does Voris---or his Opus Dei cult mind-controllers---even care? [https://www.thecatholicmonitor.com/2021/10/wernz-vidal-one-cannot-consider-as.html]
Is Opus Dei cult-like?
The conservative Catholic Damian Thompson claims some commenters on the rich organization go too far in their attacks on its seemingly cult-like ways:
“It is nearly a decade since Michael Walsh’s excellent book The Secret World of Opus Dei revealed the true face of ‘the Work’, the time would seem ripe for a proper update. Sadly, Their Kingdom Come is nothing of the sort. Although it scores a few direct hits – quoting a Vatican archivist, for example, on the way Opus researchers dig their way into official records and rewrite them – most of its serious charges are supported by nothing more than innuendo. Robert Hutchison detects the hand of the Work in every financial scandal or political initiative involving the Vatican since the Second World War, but he is frustratingly unable to prove his points, stitching together a crude tapestry of allegations with phrases ‘said to be’ and ‘reportedly’.”
The biggest mistake Pope John Paul II has ever made, by Damian Thompson, The Daily Telegraph, 6 September 1997 [https://roberthutchison.ch/books/their-kingdom-come/their-kingdom-come-reviews/]
But, Thompson isn't afraid to reveal its problematic ways:
With all this phone hacking around, I think it’s time electronic eavesdroppers had their own patron saint, don’t you? As it happens, I have the perfect candidate: St Josemaria Escrivá, founder of Opus Dei, who died as recently as 1975 and was canonised by Pope John Paul II in 2002.
A few years ago, I interviewed a distinguished priest who, as a young man, had been a member of Opus Dei and close associate of Escrivá. My jaw dropped when, half way through our conversation, he mentioned casually that “The Father” had installed bugs in Opus’s Rome headquarters in order to tape-record the conversations of visitors waiting to see him. I asked him how he knew.
“Because I helped him do it,” came the reply.
The Vatican refused to hear this priest’s testimony when Escrivá was being assessed for sainthood; conveniently, the role of Devil’s Advocate had been abolished. Of course, all saints had flaws. It’s just that you don’t expect them to share the same ones as Richard Nixon (a far more sympathetic character than Escrivá, in my book).
Anyway, the reason I’m bringing up Opus Dei is that this controversial organisation – comically misrepresented in The Da Vinci Code but still secretive and slippery – is planning to open two independent secondary schools in south-east England.
Or, to adopt the official party line, a group of parents, some of whom happen to belong to Opus Dei, are opening schools “inspired by the teachings” of St Josemaria. Hmm. Don’t get me wrong, Escrivá was undoubtedly holy, but he was also vain, a snob and a spiritual control freak. While some of his followers are exemplary Christians, the saturnine ethos of Opus bothers many Catholics, including some outstanding clergy.
A priest I know used to hear the confessions of primary school children at an Opus Dei school. “It was disturbing,” he told me. “I’d hear seven-year-olds riddled with adult scruples, worried that their disposition towards the sacrament wasn’t sufficiently pure and their sin wouldn’t be forgiven.”[https://opusfrei.org/show.php?id=360]
Wikipedia presents evidence that Opus Dei may be cult-like:
Opponents allege Opus Dei uses cult-like practices in recruitment. For instance, Jesuit priest and writer James Martin wrote that Opus Dei puts great emphasis on recruiting, and pointed to Escriva's writings which say "You must kill yourselves for proselytism." David Clark, a consultant who specialises in helping people leave cults, claimed in 2006 that Opus Dei used a cult-like recruitment technique called "love bombing", in which potential members are showered with flattery and admiration by members of the organization in order to entice them into joining. The mother of a member at Harvard University claimed the group separated her daughter from her family, and in 1991 founded Opus Dei Awareness Network, a group that aims to provide information and critique on the group's practices. [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Controversies_about_Opus_Dei]
The strange thing about supporters of the wealthy organization is that they come from both left-wing and right-wing Catholics such as Robert Royal and John Allen as well as others:
Messori, a journalist associated with Opus Dei, also identifies political ideology as the root of some controversies involving some Jesuits. After Vatican II certain sectors of the Church became politically and theologically "liberal," including Jesuits in Latin America who were experimenting with "liberation theology." In contrast, some Opus Dei laymen had been working for the far-right Franco regime in Spain and similar regimes in Latin America. Escrivá himself gave a spiritual retreat to Franco, and the numerary priest and bishop Juan Luis Cipriani Thorne was reportedly friendly with Peru's president Fujimori and unsupportive of human rights advocates. Messori emphasizes, however, that Opus Dei has also had members from left-wing parties such as the UK Labour Party (see Opus Dei and politics).
"Nothing attracts criticism like success," says author Robert Royal, "In the seventy years since its founding, the Work has grown to almost eighty thousand members, over half in Europe, another third in the Americas, and the rest scattered throughout the world. As Vittorio Messori notes, this movement, which was once thought of as a pre-Vatican II fossil by progressives, has not only survived the heyday of progressive Catholic movements, but continues growing while the left in general, religious and lay, is shrinking."
According to Time magazine, "church liberals, once riding high, have understood for decades that Rome does not incline their way. They feel abandoned, says John L. Allen Jr., 'and whenever you feel that way, there's a natural desire to find someone to blame.'" [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Controversies_about_Opus_Dei]