Álvaro del Portillo bigraphy, stories - Catholic bishop

Álvaro del Portillo : biography

March 11, 1914 - March 23, 1994

Álvaro del Portillo, or Álvaro del Portillo y Diez de Sollano, (March 11, 1914 - March 23, 1994), was a Spanish engineer and Roman Catholic bishop. He served as the prelate of Opus Dei between 1982 and 1994. He was declared Venerable by Pope Benedict XVI on 28 June 2012. On July 5, 2013 Pope Francis published a decree from the Congregation of the Causes of the Saints declaring the miraculous character of a cure of a Chilean boy attributed to the intercession of the Venerable Alvaro del Portillo, which will allow for his beatification.http://www.sacbee.com/2013/07/05/5547328/john-paul-ii-and-john-xxiii-to.html


He was born in Madrid. He studied civil engineering and after obtaining his doctorate at the University of Madrid taught at its School of Engineering. He briefly worked with the Bureau of Highways and Bridges in the provinces crossed by the rivers Júcar, Duero and Ebro.

In 1935, he joined Opus Dei and was subsequently ordained to the priesthood on June 25, 1944. He continued his studies to obtain two additional doctorates: Philosophy and Letters; and Canon Law. He then dedicated himself exclusively to the ministry and government of Opus Dei as its Secretary General. During the pontificate of Pope Pius XII (1939–1958), he worked in several Dicasteries of the Holy See.

In 1963, he was named by Pope John XXIII as a consultant on the Pontifical Commission for the revision of the Code of Canon Law. Pope Paul VI named him consultant on several post-Conciliar commissions. In 1975, he was chosen general president of the Opus Dei and successor of Josemaría Escrivá de Balaguer, and in 1982, the Holy See appointed him as the first Prelate of Opus Dei. In 1991, he was consecrated a bishop by Pope John Paul II.

He has written extensively about pastoral and ecclesiological matters that examine among others, the role of the lay faithful in the Roman Catholic Church, the human side of priestly formation, the dynamics and functionality of pastoral structures. As Prelate, he also served as Grand Chancellor of the University of Piura in Peru.

Shortly after his 80th birthday, he returned to Rome on a pilgrimage from the Holy Land. He died shortly thereafter.


On his death, John Paul II recalled del Portillo's "zealous priestly and episcopal life, the example he always gave of fortitude and of trust in divine providence and his fidelity to the See of Peter.”

Then Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger referred to del Portillo's "modesty and availability in every circumstance,” in his work at the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, which del Portillo "enriched in a singular way with his competence and experience.”

On December 6, 2002, Msgr. Javier Echevarria Rodriguez ordered an investigation into the cause for canonization of Msgr. del Portillo.

In 2004, the Cardinal Vicar of Rome, Cardinal Camillo Ruini, said “The rather frequent occasions that I had to meet Bishop del Portillo imprinted on my soul the conviction that I found myself in the presence of an exemplary pastor.” He added: “In the firmness of his adherence to the doctrine of the Church, in his union with the Pope, in his pastoral charity, in his humility, and in his balance, he exhibited an extraordinary interior richness.” According to the Cardinal, “the service that Don Alvaro always provided to the Church of Rome and the prompt and effective way that he supported the Holy Father’s pastoral initiatives in this diocese showed the love of the Church that he had learned from St. Josemaría.”

Cardinal Ruini said that there is a desire for a “quick beginning of this cause of canonization” on the part of “so many members of the ecclesiastical hierarchy and of the people of God.” Also that there is “an abundant store of testimonies of people who knew him, among them, those of quite a few cardinals and bishops,” he said. He then added: “The Bishop’s Conference [of Italy] has unanimously expressed its favorable opinion” on beginning the cause.

On June 28, 2012, the Vatican announced that his life had been recognized as one of "heroic virtue". Vatican Information Service, June 28, 2012. - a major step towards an eventual beatification. From this time on, Msgr. del Portillo is styled "Venerable Servant of God".

Living octopus

Living octopus

In countries which are located near sea coasts, sea food is an important part of national cuisine