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The Parish Movement

An expression of Focolari's Movement
at local Community service


Parish Movement is born in 1966 as fruit of encounter between come Focolarini's Movement spirituality and local Church, starting from that His alive cells who are parishes.

In that year, during an audience, Paolo VI invites priests and religious men adherent to Focolari's Movement to animate local Church articulations with his typical community spirit. This invitation is tuned with "passion for Church", that the promoter, Chiara Lubich, conveyed to all the Movement.

It answers also the experience of many priests and laymen": in Focolari's Movement spirituality they understood a charisma that can not only renew their personal life, but also provoke an alive community in their parishes, with that authenticity and evangelic freshness stamp that characterised first Christian Communities.


In a few time parish Communities arise and multiply, revived by Movement spirit: from America to extreme Orient, from Africa to Australia, and in European countries with major capillarity. At present they are more than one thousand, with tens of thousands of adherent people.

There are also other Churches Communities, animated by this spirit, in keeping with ecumenical dimension of parish Focolari's Movement.


In 1986, in Nervi classroom of Vatican, the first international congress of parish Movement takes place, which more than 7.000 animators took part in, arriving from about forty nations of all the continents.

On that occasion Chiara highlights as Movement spirituality is particularly suited to renew parish according to Council and Church documents indications.

The Holy Father confirms it who, addressing to the participants, says: "By making an effort to assimilate faithfully the particular characteristic of spiritual life proper of your Movement... and by remaining at the same time kept steadily together with your bishops, you could be authentic yeast in your parishes, you could help them to discover and develop more and more their community vocation".

Parish Movement wants to provoke in parishes - today in search of a renewed identity and vitality - a more alive community sense. Its first commitment is forming people - of every age and category - able to put at parish service as "communion builder", inside the very Community.

Its members operate inserted in various parish activities and structures, and they diffuse evangelic unity sense with lived witness, developing fraternal communion relationships all around parish priest.

This is in fact an experience verified in Parish Movement scope: the more Community is united for the charity that animates her, the more she witnesses God presence inside His people and she makes herself capable of irradiating, opening and dialoguing. If she can incarnate love in all its needs, parish is not only a cult Community, but it becomes place in which Gospel stimulates with Its perpetual novelty family, work scopes, social life; it becomes able to offer an humanity advance in which "loving civilisation" reigns.


Essential bibliography:

Focolari's Movement is on Web. See their site

edited by
fr. Paolo Benvenuto <donpaolo@gsi.it >
Via Salgari 4/4 - 16156 GENOVA PEGLI

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May 1998