and this article about Mortification: Opus Dei's practice of corporal mortification
It is one of the more dramatic and controversial aspects of the Catholic movement Opus Dei: corporal mortification.It's controversial, I suppose, because it seems that very few people (including Catholics) practice acts of mortification these days.
Mortification, which literally means "to make death," is a method of killing everyday temptations that distract from God. When a Christian gives up something for Lent, that is a form of mortification.
The Rev. Michael Geisler, spiritual director of Opus Dei in St. Louis, has written two articles this summer attempting to explain the theological purpose behind corporal mortification.It's nice to see articles explaining Opus Dei in a fairly positive light - especially in the Post.
"Self-denial helps a person overcome both psychological and physical weakness, gives him energy, helps him grow in virtue and ultimately leads to salvation," wrote Geisler in a defense of corporal mortification in the July/August issue of Crisis magazine. "It conquers the insidious demons of softness, pessimism and lukewarm faith that dominate the lives of so many today."