The adventure led by Chiara Lubich was based on just one ‘text book’: the Bible, the Gospel, the Word of God. It was through the reading of the Gospel that she and her first companions discovered a way of life that led them to God. During that period, while still teaching, Chiara had an intuition which was quickly embraced by the Focolare world and beyond: the ‘Word of Life’. They lived a sentence from the Gospel and the novelty, for that time, was that Chiara and her first companions, to help one another and to grow together, told one another of the fruits they had experienced through living the Word.
Chiara wrote: ‘The War was still raging. Every time the air-raid siren sounded, all we could take into the shelter with us was one small book: the Gospel. We opened it and the words, even though we already knew them quite well, because of the new charism , were lit up as if they had a candle beneath them, they enflamed our hearts and pushed us to put them into practise straightaway. We were attracted to them all and tried to live them one after another. I read for example; “Love your neighbour as yourself” (Mt 19,19). Our neighbour. Where was our neighbour? There, next to us in the all the people who had been hurt by the War, wounded, without clothes, without houses, hungry and thirsty. We immediately dedicated ourselves to them in many ways.