WINNIPEG, Feb. 18, 2010 – The League’s Manitoba region sponsored a presentation February 16 at St. Paul’s College, University of Manitoba with Sonia Mata of Opus Dei, a well known but little understood Catholic organization. The League’s apostolate focuses on combating media and other public defamation of Catholics and other faith-based issues.

 “Opus Dei has probably been the subject of more media misinformation than any other Catholic group,” commented Francine Lee, League director and parishioner of Our Lady of Mount Carmel in Carman. “We were pleased to invite Sonia to present the truth about the organization and its work.”

Dr. Mata agreed the movie, Da Vinci Code, misrepresented the organization and, yet, at the same time, helped members realize they need to do more to communicate what they do. Their work includes many social initiatives, solidarity with the poor, and programs for women to improve their life skills and sense of self-worth. Locally, Opus Dei organizes a project that teaches high school students at the Berens River First Nation (about 430 km north of Winnipeg) how to provide community assistance and service.

Opus Dei serves the Church by fostering the responsibility of lay people to live fully their Christian vocation. Dr. Mata discussed how the organization helps people integrate their faith with their family life, work and friendship networks into a seamless whole. Student residences, medical and dental clinics, and family centres, especially in developing countries, are among the institutions Opus Dei operates.

Based at the Canadian headquarters of Opus Dei in Montreal, Dr. Mata is a medical doctor who received her training in Spain. She has held various research positions at McGill University and has been on the Board of Directors for university residences in Montreal and Ottawa. She leads seminars for parents on teen issues. Dr. Mata is senior consultant and manager for leadership programs and social projects designed for high school and university students, currently directing and implementing these projects in five Canadian cities. She is also a consultant for the Foundation for Culture and Education and serves on the board of an independent school for girls in Toronto.

For information about League speakers available in your area, contact Joanne at

Our Windsor-Essex chapter is responding to numerous local issues, including a mid-February panel at the University of Windsor Law School that misrepresented the League’s participation in the national court case on prostitution laws. (Our views were dismissed as a juvenile attempt to impose “our” morality on society.) For information about chapter events and activities, contact president Bob Baksi at

Antigonish chapter meets the first Tuesday of each month and is active in media and public school issues. For more information, contact president Don MacLellan at