ARLINGTON, Virginia (CNS): An FBI agent, arrested in the United States on February 18 and accused of spying for the Russians, was a member of Opus Dei, according to news reports.
Robert Philip Hanssen was on the surface a typical suburban father.
He commuted daily to his Washington office from his home in northern Virginia, struggled to put his six children through Catholic schools and colleges, and attended church in Arlington diocese.
At the same time, the US Government now claims, Hanssen was a spy for the Russians for 15 years. He reportedly received more than US$1.4 million for revealing the FBI’s deepest counter-intelligence secrets. He could face the federal death penalty if convicted of treason.
Reports in the secular press said Hanssen, a 56 year-old native of Chicago, and his wife, Bonnie, are members of Opus Dei, a Catholic organisation that Pope John Paul II made a personal prelature in 1982.
Opus Dei is Latin for “work of God”. Blessed Josemaria Escriva de Balaguer established the organisation of primarily lay Catholics in Madrid, Spain, in 1928. Members promote the Church’s universal call to holiness through their ordinary professional lives.
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