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Mary, the Mother of God, has been present in the life of the Movement since the beginning, and even before that through an experience Chiara Lubich had in 1939 when visiting the little house of the family of Nazareth in the shrine at Loreto, Italy. Chiara very often recalled an episode when, during  heavy bombing in the Second World War, which could have killed her and her first companions, she understood something about Mary:

‘Covered with dust that completely filled the air, almost miraculously I was able to stand up, and in the midst of the cries of those around me, I said to my companions “ I had felt a deep sorrow in my soul as my life was in danger: it was the sorrow of no longer being able to recite on earth the Hail Mary”. At that time I could not grasp the sense of those thoughts. Perhaps it was to explain that being given life again, through the grace of God, we would be able to give glory to Mary with the Movement that was being born’. The fact that the official name for the Focolare Movement is the’ Work of Mary’ comes as no surprise. Nor is it so strange that we use the title Mariapolis (City of Mary) for many things: the main meetings of the Movement are known as Mariapolis as are the little towns. Each conference centre is known as a Mariapolis Centre and there is also a Mariapolis magazine.

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Mary Desolate
Monday, September 15, 2014 |
In the following text Igino Giordani reflects on Mary as the “collaborator” of the Redeemer who, through her desolation, became Mother of the human family.
Mary, as a heavenly sloping plane
Friday, August 15, 2014
"Mary is peaceful like nature, pure, serene, clear, temperate, beautiful—that nature which is distant from the world, in the mountains, in the open countryside, by the sea, in the blue sky or the starry heavens"... a writing of Chiara Lubich on Mary.
The Adventure of Unity/Summer of 1949
Sunday, December 15, 2013
This year, as the Movement marks its 70th anniversary we continue with a series on the history of the Focolare, presenting some foundational moments that were the cause of the birth, development and spreading of the Movement around the world.