"John Paul II was groomed for the Papacy, long before he was elected Pope, by the ultra-right-wing sect Opus Dei.
"This secret organization was founded by Monsignor Escriva, a Spanish priest who was formerly a private confessor to General Franco, organizing spiritual meetings for the Spanish fascist leadership. Opus Dei chose John Paul as the candidate for Pope very early in his career, when he was bishop of Krakow. His conservatism and anti-communism were very attractive to this sect.
"John Paul traveled extensively at that time on trips organized and funded by Opus Dei, developing a very close working relationship with the sect. Opus Dei was the organization that developed the strategy to make him the Pope, assisted by the bishop of Munich, Joseph Ratzinger; the U.S. cardinals close to Opus Dei, and others.
"The center of operations for this campaign was Villa Tevere, the Opus Dei headquarters in Rome.
"Immediately after his election as Pope, John Paul designated Opus Dei as a special order directly accountable to him, not to the bishops. He surrounded himself with members of the order, the most visible being Navarro-Valls, an Opus Dei journalist who had worked for Abc, an ultra-conservative Spanish paper that had been supportive of the Franco regime....