It seems that Opus Dei's efforts to explain itself during the Da Vinci Code is still paying off. Another seminar for journalists was held at Santa Croce this September 8-14, 2008 with the title The Church Up Close.
"We were pretty bad at communications, we were forced to learn and now we are giving courses on it," said Jack Valero, of Opus Dei, the organisation that ran the seminar at its Pontifical University of the Holy Cross in Rome.
A few years ago, before the Da Vinci Code phenomenon, a flyer about a seminar for journalists organised by Opus Dei would have been greeted with howls of derision and binned. One of the many ironies of the post-Dan Brown Catholic Church is that Opus Dei has moved into the mainstream, perhaps because the novel was too far-fetched even for the most credulous of anti-Catholic conspiracy theorists. And at least the organisation is trying to help.
The London Times sent their own religion correspondent Ruth Gledhill, and she seems to have had a blast.
You can read the rest of the Times article and all the fun that Ms. Gledhill seems to have had in the Eternal City. The title of her piece is "The Pope finally gets the message: it's good to talk". No kidding. It is a great article and worth the read.