Like thousands of others, Iyad’s family had to unexpectedly abandon their home in Mosul and their country Iraq. A painful exile, made significant by the welcome in France of those who live the same ideal of unity.[more]
At the time that Chiara and her first companions began their adventure in Trent (Northern Italy) the town had a population of about ten thousand. The girls’ actions had a real effect on the people and also on the Church. Both the elderly and the young were left speechless seeing the unusual life lived by the girls living in the ‘little house’ in Piazza Cappuccini, the first ‘focolare’. In this humble apartment the poor were at home. In fact the social problems of the city, ruined by the War, were problems the girls made their own. They believed that they could solve the problems by simply believing the truth in the words of the Gospel. By loving each neighbour one after the other.
Chiara wrote: ‘Among all the Words in the gospel we noticed immediately all those for our charism concerned specifically with evangelical love towards each neighbour, not only the poor, as when we read in the Gospel that Jesus had said “Whenever you did this for one of the least important of these brothers of mine (and that means everyone), you did it for me.” (Mt 25,40). Our old way of understanding our neighbour and loving them crumbled. If Christ was in some way in everyone, discriminations couldn’t be made, nor could preferences. Our normal way of reasoning of classifying people was thrown into the air: fellow country man or foreigner, old or young, beautiful or ugly, likeable or not, rich or poor, Christ was behind each one, Christ was in each one. “Another Christ” really was each neighbour – if grace enriched his soul – or “another Christ”, a Christ proud – if he was still far from Him.
Living like this, we realised that our neighbour was our way to reach God. It seemed that our neighbour was an arch we had to pass under in order to meet God. We experienced this right from the start. In the evening, during prayers or in a moment of recollection, after we had loved God in our brothers all day we had such union with God. Who gave us that consolation, that interior balm which was so new, celestial if not Christ who, from His Gospel lived “give and you shall be given”? (Lk 6,38) We had loved Him all day in those brothers and now He loved us. This inner gift was such a benefit! They were the first experiences of the spiritual life, of the reality of a kingdom which is not of this earth. So, in the marvellous way that the Spirit showed us, love for our brother was a new cornerstone of our spirituality.’
From the heart of Shiite Islam a group of six female students visited the international town of the Focolare to deepen their knowledge of the spirituality of unity.[more]
A project that assists adoptive families, organised by the New Families Association, is implemented with support from the Banco di Napoli Foundation. The importance of supporting families during and after the adoption process.[more]
The cause for the canonisation of Chiara Lubich is open on 27 January. Igino Giordani, in his inedited writings of 1974, testified to how the encounter in 1948 with Chiara and her charism had changed his life, stirring up in him a totally new concept of sanctity.[more]
A harsh guerrilla group has been terrorizing some areas of Nigeria for some time now. The States of Adamawa, Borno and Yobe are those most affected by the attacks and for more than a year have been living in a state of emergency. A trip to the borders of the world to share the sufferings of the refugees.[more]
Chiara Lubich on two different occasions in 2000, first in Castel Gandolfo (Italy) and then in Fontem (Cameroon), responds to questions of teens of the Focolare Movement. Two answers that are still very relevant today.[more]