Every beginning of the year, nothing is the same as it was at Loreto School. It’s been that way ever since 1982 when the school was found, because of the different places the families come from each year. Their reasons for going to Loppiano are also different. They rhythm of the course and the work are also adapted to their languages and cultures. Celebrations are enriched by their sounds and colours. The course focuses on topics related to the family within the context of the spirituality of unity and coincide with the children’s scholastic year in the local public schools.
Eight families that are currently attending the school come from Japan, Korea, Mexico, Brazil, Colombia, Italy, Argentina and Vietnam. They have one thing in common: the desire to grow in Gospel mutual love. This is the only law that reigns in the Focolare town where the families have come to have a full immersion in the spirituality of unity.
“Why did we come here?”, Indian Henke and Emilio di Pelotas try to explain. “To seek the essential in life. We didn’t want to get stuck in the vicious circle of profit, so we inserted our business in the Economy of Communion project (EoC). We sold the car, gave away half of our clothing to the poor along with a few electrical gadgets for the house. It was a drastic move and, as a consequence, we felt the irresistible urge to be formed as a family together with our children in the spirituality of unity.”
“In order to come here,” says Bao Chau, Vitenamese and father of two boys, “we had to wait four years because of family reasons. We were about to withdraw our enrolment when the obstacles were overcome and we strongly felt that God was waiting for us in Loppiano.
We’ve been here since 2016, but because of the language we weren’t able to understand everything that was discussed in the course, so we decided to stay on for another year. I asked me employer; I asked my brothers to help me with the home loan and I asked the school director. Two months later, all the answers came back affirmative.” “We’re glad to stay on,” his wife Bao Vy adds, “to enter more deeply into the life of the Gospel and, when we return home, to share it with other families in Vietnam, so that we can continue to grow together in love.”
“We come from Korea, and this is our daughter, 13 year old Maria Grazia. Irema and Michele are the owners of an institute that Michele founded fifteen years ago, to answer to the widespread need for better university preparation.
“From the first ten students,” they recount, “in three years there a thousand units. We were overtaken by the work and our plan of building a harmonious and united family began to feel the effects.”
After a deep communion among them, in the first days of June the decision was made to look for another kind of work. Then Michele had an idea: “If we sell the Institute we can go to Loppiano for a year!”
It was an idea that Irema had right after their wedding, but back then it wasn’t possible. “We had to get sold before vacations. We prayed a lot and, on the last Saturday of June, the Institute was sold. God really wanted us to be here!”
Francesca, 34 years old from Italy, and Roberto, 37 years old from Argentina are also a part of the mosaic.
After several experiences in other countries,” they recount, “we are now residents of Italy, in Loreto. In our journey as a family, which has been brief but intense, we were never spared from problems: the different family contexts, several external affairs that were foreign to us and our way of doing things that blocked us a bit, but love and the will to build a healthy open family are strong.
So we nurtured the decision to come to Loreto School with three year old Isabel, to learn how to prioritize and grow as parents and people. By living and sharing and being confronted by others, who knows? Maybe one day we will be able to testify to the Gospel out in the world.”