«That all may be one» (Jn. 17,21)
We were born for these words, for unity, to give a contribution to its realization in the world. Chiara Lubich
|Publications and Media|
|Websites in the world|
|New City Press|
|In the Beginning - The first intuition|
|Written by admin|
|Thursday, February 07, 2008|
Page 2 of 12
A first sign. It was 1939. I was invited to go to Loreto, the famous Marian town and shrine located in central Italy, for a gathering of Catholic students. Loreto was to be the starting point of my spiritual experience.
I attended the meetings with all the others. As soon as I could, however, on the first breaks, I ran to the Little House, which is now encased in a fortress-like church and which people think was part of the house of Nazareth. I did not have time to check whether historically this was the place which housed the Holy Family or not. I used to kneel down beside a wall blackened by the smoke of the candles. I could not utter a word. Something new and divine enveloped me, almost overwhelming me.
I contemplated in my mind the life of virginity of those three people. So Mary would have lived here. Joseph would have walked across the room, from here to there. The child Jesus in their midst would have known this place for years. The walls would have echoed with the voice of this child… tears fell uncontrollably. That is what happened the first time. But then, at every break between meetings, I always hurried there. That dwelling together of virgins with Jesus present among them attracted me irresistibly.
Then came the last day. The church was filled with young people. A thought flashed through my mind, one which I will never forget:“you will be followed by an array of virgins.”
Once back in Trent I met with my students ─ I was a primary school teacher ─ and the parish priest. He saw how happy I was and asked:"Have you found your way in life?" "Yes," I said. ""Marriage?" "No." "The Convent?" "No." "A life of virginity in the world?" "No," I said, "it is a fourth way". But I knew nothing more.
Four years went by.
One day, while doing an act of love I realized that God was calling me to give myself to him forever. I asked a priest for permission to do this and obtained it. It was December 7, 1943. The inner joy I experienced was boundless, secret, but contagious. Through different circumstances I came to meet young people my own age. They wanted to follow my way.