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Events throughout the world and Maria Voce’s message for the 14 March 2010, the Second Anniversary of Chiara’s departure.
‘Over the next few days the person and teachings of Chiara Lubich will be remembered in many countries throughout the world. This occasion gives us the opportunity to thank God for the great gift that Chiara is for humanity and to re-focus on the living strength of the charism of unity, which has touched the lives of people of different cultures, traditions and faiths.
Day by day we experience that Chiara hasn’t left us but is still at work, in a special way through the lives of our communities, in every corner of the world, illuminating and renewing today’s society.’ This is what Maria Voce, President of the Focolare Movement said in a message to everyone who will be attending the celebrations to mark the Second Anniversary.
A wide variety of events are being organised throughout the world, not just in remembrance of Chiara but also to share her legacy with many others in this current moment of global crisis, and of search for something new.
Ecumenical meetings in Moscow and Bucharest, an inter-religious meeting in Hong Kong (on the 40th Anniversary of the beginning of the Movement there). On Mount Sion, in Jerusalem, where tradition holds that Jesus prayed for unity, Christians, Jews and Muslims will participate in a ceremony where 8 olive trees will be planted in honour of Chiara Lubich.
Cultural Events: The City Councils of Rome and Milan are hosting two conferences with Civil and Religious leaders present, entitled respectively: ‘Seeds of fraternity for a more united world’, and ‘Chiara Lubich - a life lived for unity’, ten years after she was conferred with Roman Citizenship at Campidoglio.
The impact Chiara Lubich’s charism has made on the world of Economy will be studied in depth at the University of Reggio Emilia. In Parma the subject will be: ‘Communicating in the era of the New Media: Chiara Lubich’s Way’. There are also many artistic events planned - concerts and classical ballet.
There are many Masses planned, often celebrated by bishops and followed by meetings with testimonies and explanations of the spirituality of unity and of the re-discovery of God-Love, which was the starting point for everything. At St John Lateran’s Basilica in Rome Archbishop Gianfranco Ravasi, President of the Pontifical Council for Culture, will celebrate a mass; Card. Dionigi Tettamanzi in Milan; Card. Archbishop Francisco Javier Errazzuriz Ossa in Santiago, Chile; H.E. Mons Pelatre in Istanbul. Also in Santo Domingo (Dominican Republic) with Card. Lopez Rodriguez and Hong Kong with Card. Zen. To mention just a few other places where masses will be celebrated: Spalato (Croatia), Bucharest (Romania), Melbourne (Australia), Salvador de Bahia and Aracaju (Brazil), Iringa (Tanzania) and Montreal (Canada).
Following the mass celebrated by Archbishop Celestino Migliore, the Holy See’s Permanent Observer at the UN, at Hyde Park (near New York), USA, there will be a ceremony to award the 2010 Luminosa Prize for Unity.
Events of every type – more than 400 throughout the world – that show how far the spirit of unity has spread, and with what gratitude Chiara Lubich is remembered. ‘What is the best way to express our gratitude?’ – Maria Voce concludes her message – ‘Let’s go ahead together, in her footsteps, living the ideal for which Chiara gave her life: universal fraternity.’