Category Archives: Communion & Liberation

Giussani helps us to understand the struggle for meaning, purpose and beauty

In a recent article for the Our Sunday Visitor newspaper, Father Robert takes up the concept of the religious sense that Father Giussani taught, and that Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio –now Pope Francis spoke about. Shortly after the papal election I posted the chapter that Father Barron references in his article noted below, from A Generative Thought: An Introduction to the Works of Luigi Giussani (2003), where Bergoglio writes about our need to educate our religious sense and how Giussani influenced him in his method of dealing with ultimate questions.

You may read that chapter here that’s noted in a previous post on Communio.

Here is a paragraph of Barron’s OSV article. The full text is accessed here.

Part of Msgr. Giussani’s genius, Cardinal Bergoglio argued, was that he did not often commence his discourse with explicitly dogmatic or doctrinal language, but rather with an awakening of the often implicit religious sensibility that every person possesses. This sensibility expresses itself in terms of the most fundamental questions: What is my ultimate origin? What is my final destiny? Is there a meaning or logic that runs through the universe? Why, precisely, is there something rather than nothing? These interrogations lead ineluctably to God, for God alone can answer them.

Father Robert Barron

OSV Newsweekly, 5 May 2013

Doing School of Community

“How does School of Community become a point of comparison? First of all, it must be read by clarifying the meaning of the words together –not an interpretation of the words, but the literal sequence […] Secondly, space must be given to the exemplification of a comparison between what one lives and what one has read. One must ask himself how what he read and tried to understand literally judges life.”

Fr Giussani (published in Traces, 1992) and quoted in Fr Julián Carrón’s notes for his March 20, 2013 School of Community

Communion and Liberation’s prayer on St Benedict’s feast

passing of Benedict.jpgThis day blessed Benedict in the presence of his brethren ascended directly from his cell toward the East into heaven; this day, his hands raised, he breathed forth his soul in prayer; this day he was received by the Angels into glory. (Vespers Mag. Ant.)

Our prayer today is for all who follow the Rule of Saint Benedict and the gifts given to the Church and world by the Benedictines. Most especially our prayer today is with the Fraternity of Communion and Liberation who counts Saint Benedict as one of the co-patrons of the movement. May we who live the path given by the Servant of God Father Luigi Giussani to “incline our heart” unto the Lord’s.
Father Giussani once said to the Benedictine monks of Cascinazza (Milan), “Christ is present! The Christ announcement is that God became one of us and is present here, and gathers us together into one body, and through unity, His presence is made perceivable. This is heart of the Benedictine message of the earliest times. Well, this also defines the entire message of our Movement, and this is why feel Benedictine history to be the history to which we are the closest.”

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Pope Francis writes about Fr Luigi Giussani: he “helped me to pray”

JM Bergoglio.jpgResearch is running on steroids in the hours since Jorge Mario Bergoglio was elected to be our new Roman Pontiff, Francis. This is especially true with members of Communion and Liberation who are eager to see what connection they can make with the new Pope. Who could blame us?

In the first paragraph Bergoglio writes about a lecture he gave on the Religious Sense where he says, “…I was not simply performing  a formal act of protocol … I was expressing the gratitude that is due to Msgr Giussani. For many years now, his writings have inspired me to reflect and have helped me to pray. They have taught me to be a better Christian, and I spoke at the presentation to bear witness to this.”

Pope Francis on the Religious Sense.pdf

(From, Eliza Buzzi, A Generative Thought: An Introduction to the Works Luigi Giussani, McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2003).
Yesterday afternoon I posted here on Communio a Traces article, “The Attraction of the Cardinal.”

Father Julián Carrón: Pope Francis has an “awareness of his ministry as Bishop in communion

Father Julián Carrón wrote to members of CL on the election of Pope Francis as the Bishop of Rome.


Within the irrepressible joy of having a new guide for our community of believers, I am struck by how he managed to communicate to us, from his very first movements, with simple gestures comprehensible to everyone, where his gaze is fixed. With his choice of name, Francis, he shows us that he has no other wealth but Christ. He trusts no modality of communicating this if not plain and simple witness to Christ.

Pope Francis’s disarming request expressed the awareness that this witness is pure grace and that we must beg for it: “I ask you to pray to the Lord that He will bless me.” In the Pope’s prayer, together with the crowd in St. Peter’s Square, the miracle of the life that is the Church–whose heart is Christ Himself–took shape before the eyes of the world.

I am struck by the profound harmony, founded on faith in Jesus Christ, between the realism of Benedict XVI, who with his gesture reminded the world that the Church is Christ’s, and the humble realism of Pope Francis, who immediately expressed the consciousness of his ministry as a Bishop in communion and on a journey with the people of the Church of Rome, “which presides in love over all the Churches,” according to a fitting expression by the great Saint Ignatius of Antioch.

Moved by the invitation to start the journey together, Bishop and people, we ask Our Lady to grant each of us the abandonment to Christ that Francis witnesses to us in this moment.

Grateful to the Spirit, who gave a guide to His Church, we therefore start the journey desiring to follow and to serve the Pope with all of ourselves, according to the teaching that we received from Fr. Giussani: “The face of that single man [Christ] today is the unity of believers, who are the sign of Him in the world, or as Saint Paul says, who are His Body, His mysterious Body–also called ‘the people of God’–guided and guaranteed by a living person, the Bishop of Rome.”

Father Julián Carrón
President, Fraternity of Communion and Liberation
14 March 2013

About the author

Paul A. Zalonski is from New Haven, CT. He is a member of the Fraternity of Communion and Liberation, a Catholic ecclesial movement, and an Oblate of Saint Benedict. Contact Paul at paulzalonski[at]
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