October 7, 1997 - Luigi Giussani laiškai

October 7, 1997

On the occasion of the beginning of the School of Community after the summer interruption

Dearest friend,

At the beginning of this new social year I was particularly impressed as I said Night prayer on Friday by this text of Jeremiah "You are in our midst O Lord and we are called by Your name, don't desert us, Lord our God" (Jer 14:9).

After His resurrection Jesus Christ, the mystery of God made flesh in the man Jesus is fulfilled, realised in time and space, that is in human history, binding in unity to Himself and among them all those who acknowledge Him. This unity is called the mysterious Body of Christ, and in history all this mysterious method of relationship between God and man is revealed as a people different from all the others, called also Church of Christ, just as in the Old Testament it was called Israel.

Thus God stays in our midst, so much so that the whole world calls us Christians, and this is the truest and greatest responsibility of our life. This is why, taking inspiration from the Bible, we also say that wherever a companionship of Christian men is consciously acknowledged and lived it is called God's dwelling among men.

The great company of Christ's people which is the Church thus subsists existentially in every place where a companionship of Christian men and women lives, a companionship that can even be small (cf. Mt 18:20), as the initial form of the great community with the bishops and the Pope.

Each of our Fraternities is made of persons who freely help one another to understand and live life's greatest responsibility which is to witness to Christ in faith: witnessing to Him before ourselves and the whole world.

Each dwelling lived as companionship in the vocation as each family made of parents and children, each monastery or convent, each house as companionship of consecrated people constitute the extreme terminal - locus where we are educated to this Fraternity.

Each group of Fraternity, as every form of our companionship, must tend to realise this fraternity; thus each Fraternity is a capillary aspect of the dwelling of God's real presence among men, which is the Church in all its levels. The presence of Christ, the Mystery made flesh in Jesus of Nazareth, is thus witnessed to concretely in society by companionships of persons who seek that change in their lives and in their participation in the life of society that makes the event of Christ and of His Church experienceable, here and now. It is, if it changes.

This new year I pray to Jesus that the whole Fraternity of CL may multiply and make more intense the local groups of fraternity, so that the world be lit more and more capillarily by a dwelling of God among men.

Let's remember that making the offer of ourselves a habit transforms the person that lives in any situation or circumstance; and others are moved by this change to a question and an acknowledgement. Holy Mass is a fundamental gesture in this education and therefore in the living of the community.

Do not desert us Lord our God. He never forsakes anyone who acknowledges Him. We can desert Him, even by forgetting about Him, or by ignoring the reminders through which He meets with our life.

Wishing you all the gladness of which a Christian is capable, with impassioned hope more in each of you than in myself,

Yours affectionately,
Fr Luigi Giussani

Milan, October 7, 1997

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