Guide on Preventing Opus Dei Infiltration
How to Prevent Opus Dei From Recruiting Within And Taking Over A Catholic Young Adult Group, College/University Campus Ministry Or Any Other Catholic Organization
Updated: Jan, 2003
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As part of its normal modus operandi, Opus Dei attempts to infiltrate and take over other mainstream Catholic organizations with the aim of turning them into recruitment fronts. Opus Dei will attempt to infiltrate both the leadership councils and the general memberships of any Catholic organization that it does not control. Such organizations can include, but are not limited to, young adult groups, CYO groups, college/university Newman Clubs, Campus Ministries, parishes, and schools. The purpose of this Guide is to provide tried and tested methods for maintaining the independence of Catholic groups and to prevent Opus Dei takeover and destruction of other organs of the Catholic Church. Please note that these methods have been sucessfully used by the young adult group Contemporary Roman Catholics (CRC), one of the largest young adult groups in Manhattan, New York City. The CRC has been over the past several years and currently is the target of an organized, intense and sustained campaign by Opus Dei to take it over and turn it into a recruitment front. However, through the effective use of these methods, the CRC has been not only been able to prevent an Opus Dei takeover, but also increase the size of its ministry, free from Opus Dei control. This Guide is being distributed under the GNU General Public License. This Guide can be customized and modified in any way to suit a particular situation to which it is being applied. Permission is granted for this Guide to be copied anywhere in the world, at any time, in any format. It has been reviewed by people who have had extensive experience with Opus Dei’s modus operandi.
Please note that many of these techniques can be used against similar Catholic groups that have been reported to use cult-like mind control techniques, such as Focolare, Neo-Catechumenate, Legionaries of Chirst/Regnum Christi, Communion and Liberation, Miles Jesu, Emmannuel Community
- One of the best ways to prevent Opus Dei from getting a strong foothold in a group is to meet regularly, preferably on a weekly basis, perhaps after a 5:30 PM Mass on Sunday. The primary reason for this is to establish and sustain a core community of people who are friends and know each other well. That way Opus Dei recruiters will stand out immediately, since they will be there for only recruitment purposes, not to socialize and build a Catholic community. It is important to note that many Opus Dei recruitment fronts will meet infrequently, generally around once a month, so that people intentionally will not get to know each other well. That will give the Opus Dei recruiters the first-mover advantage to hone in on people since they will be the only organized sub-group that knows what the overall situation in the organization is. By meeting only once a month, those outside of the Opus Dei orbit will find it difficult to get to know one another to provide a sustained counterweight to the Opus Dei recruiting onslaught.
- Since Opus Dei is an elitist group, try to make many of your functions no or low cost. This will allow the maximum number of people to attend your events on a regular basis, thereby diluting any Opus Dei incursions by sheer weight of numbers. It should be noted that Opus Dei recruitment fronts generally charge high admission fees to screen out those that do not have a great deal of expendable income, as Opus Dei looks only for people with wealth.
- As a group, try to organize labor-intensive apostolic works on a regular basis, such as painting schools, clean ups, etc. In addition to answering the call of God to serve the less fortunate, such activities also go a long way toward building up the friendships and community within of your group, which will again make it hard for Opus Dei to penetrate with its recruitment activities. Since Opus Dei is an elitist group, they generally, but not always, will be absent from such labor-intensive activities since these types of activities are considered beneath Opus Dei members and possible recruits. Opus Dei much prefers to recruit at intellectual discussion groups and talks.
- Make independent sources of information about Opus Dei easily available to your membership on an ongoing basis. One of the most effective ways of doing this is to distribute the Sample Opus Dei Informational Flyer throughout your group. This provides a concise but informational document for people, as well as providing additional websites to look at for more information. Such information provides excellent innoculation against Opus Dei recruitment and infiltration. In addition, it provides an understanding of how Opus Dei operates. Some places on the Web with information are ODAN and dmoz.org.
- In order to thwart Opus Dei recruitment in your group, prepare flyers with information about Opus Dei, including website links. When you see a person being targeted for recruitment, simply give the flyer to the person with the suggestion that the Opus Dei recruiter might be involved. Please feel free to use the Sample Opus Dei Informational Flyer. The key is to plant a seed in the person’s mind, and let them discover more from what has been given to them.
- DNE – DO NOT ENGAGE! Under ANY circumstances, do not engage in an argument directly any Opus Dei recruiter, representative, spokesperson or priest verbally, in writing, via email or over the phone. Opus Dei does not negotiate and sees individuals in one of two ways: recruits or enemies. In Opus Dei’s mind, there is no middle ground. If one is engaged directly in an attempt to defend one’s group from infiltration, Opus Dei will seek to harass and/or force you into a confrontation of some kind whereby they can go to an authority figure (such as the police, university administration, or parish pastor) say that they are the victim of harassment and intimidation. DO NOT FALL FOR THIS TRAP. Opus Dei specializes in character assassination of its enemies to destroy their reputation, knows the limits of the law and how to manipulate those limits to its advantage. Remember, Opus Dei will only respect one thing, and that is the force of the legal system. (see next point)
- When Opus Dei is getting aggressive and intimidating and refuses to back down, (or preferably, even before) modify and mail this Cease and Desist letter to get them to back down. It is key that the letter is mailed with a record of delivery and receipt. This record is necessary to prove to the police that the person has been served a Cease and Desist Order should the person not back down after the Order has been sent. In the US, the letter can be sent via the US Postal Service’s Priority Mail with Delivery Confirmation. Please note that it is suggested that you do not send the Order via Certified Mail/Return Receipt, since the Opus Dei operative will be instructed to refuse delivery of the Order. However, Priority Mail/Delivery Confirmation does not require a signature and cannot be refused. Be sure to keep a copy of the letter, your record of Delivery Confirmation. In addition, you may want to send a copy to the local police precinct, via Certified Mail, to alert them to the harassment you are receiving from Opus Dei elements. Opus Dei members are under tremendous pressure to recruit new people and destroy their enemies, so please remember they will not be rational and will only back down in the face of legal force.
- Listen to the women of your group. It has been observed that women are generally the first ones to pick up on the presence of Opus Dei within a given group. Since Opus Dei members (mostly men) are under cult-like mind control, they will generally have a very different feel to their personalities than those who are not under the influence of mind control. Women will generally describe that there is a feeling of „oddness” or „strangeness” in the room that they can’t quite pinpoint. This is generally also associated with a strong sense of unease. If there are several women in your group reporting feelings like this, it is best to listen to them and investigate further as to the source. (PS – this was written by a man)
- In a university or college environment, Opus Dei will generally view the Catholic Campus Ministry and/or Newman Club as a major recruiting target. Please note that Opus Dei does not believe in working together with the mainstream Catholic groups on campus for the betterment of the overall Catholic community. They only view mainstream groups as pools of potential Opus Dei recruits and nothing more. They will seek to siphon off as many members as they could and remove them from regular Catholic activites. Also, Opus Dei may have one or several recruitment fronts in the form of intellectual Christian and/or apologetics groups. Their mission statements may sound something like: „XYZ Group is a student organization dedicated to the study of the Christian intellectual tradition and its approach to the modern world — the issues and ideas of the day. The members believe that the diverse approaches of Christian thinkers throughout history offer an invaluable contribution to intellectual discourse on campus. The Club is intended for any and all students, regardless of religious affiliation, interested in exploring the truth behind the moral and social issues of our Modern World without adopting the common secular practice of arbitrarily excluding the voice of Christianity from public debate.”
- In addition to focusing on Catholic campus groups, Opus Dei will also seek to recruit almost anywhere within the college community: students they work with, live with, go to classes with, etc. Some places where they are trained to find people are after daily and/or Sunday Masses, particularly those that choose to spend time alone in prayer for a few minutes afterwards. In addition, Opus Dei recruiters generally hone in on people who appear to be alone, for example, as a social function or in a dining hall. Finally, a key demographic that they look for are entering freshmen because they are new to the university enviornment, may not have any experience dealing with Opus Dei, and are also probably away from home for the first time, and therefore are vulnerable because they are looking to put down roots. A drastic change in a person’s environment, such as moving away from home for the first time, can make a person much more suggestible to outside influences, particularly from high-pressure cultic organizations like Opus Dei.
- Opus Dei also runs a large number of residence halls near college campuses around the world. The purpose of these residence halls is not to provide housing, but to provide a pool of potential recruits for Opus Dei. In the atmosphere of a residence hall run by Opus Dei, they have the opportunity to apply with maximum pressure the cultic mind-control techniques upon the non-Opus Dei residents for a sustained period of time. It is best if your organization avoids any and all contact with Opus Dei-run residence halls.
- Try to limit the number of single-sex events that your group has, such as discussion nights, talks and retreats. Single-sex events serve as a magnet for Opus Dei recruiters, since there are no people of the opposite sex to distract potential recruits. Please note that Opus Dei tries to get its members to take a vow of celibacy, so it will be naturally attracted to those who attend single sex events. Co-ed events provide additional barriers (though not innoculation) to aggressive Opus Dei recruiting.
- Trust your instincts. If you are reading this page, then that means something is not quite right. That „something” is Opus Dei and its vicious mind-control tactics. Remember that your love of your friends and family is stronger than the proclamations of a hierarchy that has as its primary goal its own survival which says Opus Dei is a „good” thing.
- Finally, don’t give up. God gave you a mind to think, to reason, to question, to seek answers. If you are questioning Opus Dei, that means you are using the gifts God gave you for good. Remember, faith is one thing, blind obedience is quite another and they are not the same. Opus Dei is here to stay, but that does not mean you have to let them have everything their way. Opus Dei is not a form of spirituality, but a form of cult-like mind control. It is not what Catholicism or religion in general is about.
The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want…
He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of rightousness for His name’s sake.
Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil:
For thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.