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Their Kingdom Come: Inside the Secret World of Opus Dei [Hardcover]

Robert Hutchison
2.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)

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Book Description

June 23 1999
An explosive expose of one of the most powerful and secretive sects operating within the Roman Catholic Church-Opus Dei.

This book reveals that Opus Dei:

-Has become the Catholic Church's paramount financial power
-Influences its members through a combination of secret rites and insistence on absolute obedience
-Uses a strategy of discretion to cloud its real intentions
-Aims to prepare Christendom for the next crusade against Islam

Product Details

Product Description

From Amazon

Their Kingdom Come: Inside the Secret World of Opus Dei by Robert Hutchison purports to expose the inner workings of an extremely conservative Catholic organization headquartered in Rome, whose members include the Pope's personal secretary, his spokesman, and several of his close ministers. These leaders are supported by 80,000 other believers around the world. Opus Dei is Latin for "God's Work," and Hutchison believes that Opus Dei's divine devotions include the operation of a media network as large as Rupert Murdoch's; immense financial support of the Church; and the preparation for a new Crusade against Islam. Their Kingdom Come paints Opus Dei as a Catholic conspiracy to infiltrate the world's upper echelons of political, financial, and educational power, and suggests that the group especially prizes its Mafia connections. Hutchison, a Swiss journalist who has written for the Sunday Telegraph and Toronto's Financial Post, weakens some of his arguments with cheap shots (chapter titles include "Moneybags Theology" and "Opus Octopus"), and he leans too heavily on anonymous sources for his most scandalous accusations. The few Opus Dei members whom he does identify, do, however, evince a steely, dogmatic self-confidence: "We have been chosen by God to save the Church," says one; "We have an orthodox vision that is pure, certain, solid, assured of everything," intones another. Opus Dei is the pope's only Personal Prelature, a privileged bishopric with no geographical boundaries. Learning more about the group is worth a reader's time, and Their Kingdom Come is a fine, though flawed, way to begin that endeavor. --Michael Joseph Gross

From Publishers Weekly

Hutchison has chosen a tricky subject: a secretive Catholic organization that can easily provoke the old prejudices against Catholics involving secrecy and conspiracies. It's to his credit, then, that his report on Opus Dei ("God's Work"), a small, little-known but powerful lay organization within the Catholic church, is a responsible piece of investigative reporting. Both politically and theologically conservative (many would say reactionary), Opus Dei has, according to Hutchison, flourished during the papacy of John Paul II: "John Paul II's closest advisers were the men of Opus Dei... which, through his help, had become the Church's only Personal Prelature, that is to say, a privileged bishopric without a territory." The organization's aggressive recruiting of influential professionals in business, media, finance and government has enabled it to amass enormous backroom influence. Hutchison presents a mixed chronological and thematic account of Opus Dei's development, from the provincial family background of Spanish founder Josemar!a Escriv de Balaguer (1902-1975) to its present role intensifying lines of conflict with fundamentalist Islam. While Hutchison puts readers right in the middle of various complex financial/political scandals, his narrative slips rapidly from thread to thread, exacerbating the inherent confusion of such secretive dealings. He touches on important theological, philosophical and moral issues, but fails to use them systemically to illuminate Opus Dei's rivalries with others on the right or its profound hostility to progressives such as Pope John XXIII. Ultimately, while the book is packed with meticulous detail, Hutchison never weaves his findings into a coherent evaluative framework. Photos, illustrations not seen by PW.
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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ROME HAD RARELY SEEN ANYTHING LIKE THE MID-MAY 1992 INFLUX of pilgrims for gala beautification that paralysed traffic for days, causing greater mayhem than usual in the city that often knows little else. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars 1 Star because you cannot give 0 Jan. 14 2007
Seldom do I come across a book that turns me off so quickly, and so completely, as this book did. For a little over a year I have been researching Opus Dei with the goal of doing my Thesis on the organization. If even a tenth of what this book claims is true, then this group is the best in the world at keeping secrets, and the people I have known who are members are great deceivers, better than what the devil himself is given credit for being.

The cover of the book claims: "A responsible piece of investigative reporting ... packed with meticulous detail." from Publishers Weekly. Yet I find none of that in this book in comparison with other books on the same subject. Both this author, and Michael Walsh in his book The Secret World of Opus Dei, claim to have access to secret documents that are not reproduced or evidenced other than their claims given to their existence.

Hutchison claims that Josemaria Escriva, the founder of Opus Dei, was not really interested in the spiritual life of his followers. He states: "Escriva was interested in power. He was a schemer. God's schemer. And he wanted to control higher education, and later government ministries." p.87 This book makes such wide and varied accusations against Opus Dei that it is hard to believe the author has not been charged with libel and slander. Hutchison claims that Opus Dei has overturned governments, controlled the FBI and the CIA, bankrupted the Vatican so that Opus Dei could bail them out, and orchestrated assassination attempts including the one against Pope Paul VI.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
In my opinion, this book is another compilation of calumnies against Opus Dei, or "The Work". The author silences many facts about Opus Dei. For exmaple, that all the Popes have supported the Work, not just John Paul II. Even John Paul I, who ruled the Church just for 33 days, and was described by many as a "liberal" or "progresist" Cardinal, was an admirer of Monsignor Escrivá, the founder of the Work, and one month before being elected Pope, wrote an excellent article about the Work and it's founder, which compares with St. Francis of Sales. Mr. Hutchinson silences also that Opus Dei is an important part always in the interreligious dialogue. In my country, the Work's university's is the only one which allows jew students, to stay at home on saturday, their sacred day. The most incredible accusation of the author, is that the Work is preparing another crusade. I think no one can believe that, seriously, today, that someone is thinking about a new crusade. If you are of the kind of people imagining conspiracies, corruption an secrecies everywhere, this is the book for you. If you want to read something more objective, I would recommend you Vittorio Messori's one, which is also sold by Amazon.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Category for the book: FICTION!! Oct. 6 2002
By A Customer
Here we go, again. Someone sensationalizing what the
Catholic Church purportedly teaches. This book couldn't be
further from the truth.
The simple truth of the matter is St. Escriva founded Opus Dei
to help Catholic Christians live out their faith in every area
of their lives, especially the workplace.
Big secret there, huh?
This book is not worth the paper it's printed on. Don't waste your money.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Believing in a nonsence is the modern way June 21 2001
By A Customer
American education does not provide the people the knowledge to distinguish between right from wrong, fictions from facts. They believe what they feel somewhat agrees with their prejudices. Their mind cannot think what is reasonable and what is not; that is why, they believed in talkative politicians more than the trustfull ones. Believe in a new crusade, believe in a plot!!? I think they want to paint bad on Opus Dei because they are liberal, modernism who want to destroy the Catholicism, and the Catholic Church.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars ideology: pretending to possess the truth Dec 31 2001
The classical example of pre-judice: litterally a judgment already decided. The thesis of this book were there before even trying to understand this institution. The pages were written only to denigrate Opus Dei and the Cathloic Church. A true example of "tollerance": if your ideas are not in line with mine, then I need to destroy you. A book which don't worth even the paper on which it has been printed. Full of lies and manipulated reality to picture the author's own world.
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2.0 out of 5 stars Onward...Catholic Workers! Sept. 18 2002
Expedited sainthood for Father Jose Maria Escriva is but one theme Robert Hutchison develops in this 486 page work. Less apparent to the reader is the personality of the energetic founder of Opus Dei. The author may have caught a profound and intimate glimpse of him and chose not to convey it. Father Jose as an organizer, religious figure, flagellante and scholar is depicted only briefly. Unfortunately, some aspects of his life and personal qualities, which had to be sizable, if not larger than life, are not fully conveyed here. Apparently, it was not at all easy to be regarded fondly by Father Escriva. Some saints may not be as cordial as one would think.
Of course, the book purports to focus on Opus Dei not its founder. In preparation to read this, one might wish to read at least a primer on the Spanish Civil War.Those with specialized interest and knowledge of this important period of modern European history will best be able to judge if Hutchison got it right! Considerable detail , some tangential, is provided on a very complex piece of Spain's history. Founded in 1928 with direct revelations received by Father Escriva, the organization was born in the fateful years leading up to the Civil War.
Certainly the impact of Opus Dei is being felt in the corridors of the UN and is sometimes seen as unseemly. Its outreach is worldwide. The author provides sparce information about the OD in the United States with a membership of 5,000 reported in 1995. We are told R. Sargent Shriver and wife Eunice of the Kennedy clan "became active Opus Dei operators (sic)." Little else is said by Hutchison about OD in America. He does say the former head of the FBI, Louis Freeh, was an Opus Dei supernumerary. Amazing if true!
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Most recent customer reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars opus dei secrets of the church
opus dei is said to mean work pd god ,yet why is it that it refers to oedipus, . the one man who was ably to answer the riddle. Read more
Published on March 1 2004
1.0 out of 5 stars False book
This book has very high biased opinion over the Opus Dei. I don't believe in anything I've read in it.
Published on Feb. 24 2004 by Pedro Oliveira Jr.
5.0 out of 5 stars Superbly Researched and Written
This is an excellent book - superbly researched and written. I would imagine that any previous negative reviews were submitted by Opus Dei sympathizers. That's fine, of course. Read more
Published on Oct. 7 2003
3.0 out of 5 stars Thy Kingdom Come, Thy will be done
THe writer rightly intuits that Opus Dei have a major role to play in the new world order, but had no access to their divine guidance. Read more
Published on Nov. 6 2002 by Mr. C. M. Fitzpatrick
2.0 out of 5 stars How sensationalism can replace realism
This book is loaded with sensational "revelations" - all you have to do is replace rational thought with gullibility and have a rollicking read. Read more
Published on July 10 2002 by Bill O'Chee
3.0 out of 5 stars God's Work? The New Templars.
This book is a lot of salacious rumor and scandal involving Opus Dei and the secret maneuverings of the Vatican. Read more
Published on Jan. 20 2002 by New Age of Barbarism
4.0 out of 5 stars major negative aspects covered, essence of opus dei elusive
As always, the fundamental issue in any description of Opus Dei is truth. In this respect, I believe that in covering the negative aspects of Opus Dei, Hutchinson has written one... Read more
Published on Nov. 10 2001 by los desaparecidos
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