An Immersion into the International Center of the Focolare Movement

15 Dec 2023 | Life, News, Training

From November 12 to 24 of last month, just over a month after the end of their course, the members of the Focolare Movement at the Loppiano School visited the International Center of the Focolare Movement in Rocca di Papa (RM) During their visit, they explored the work, life, and people associated with the Center.

“Being physically present and engaging with the individuals working there, learning about their life experiences, and gaining insight into specific services they offer, has allowed us to deeply immerse ourselves in their daily lives. It has provided us with a better understanding of the diverse contributions they make to the Focolare Movement on a global scale,” explains Joaquín, an Argentine, as he attempts to encapsulatethe immersive experienceof a two-week stay (from November 12 to 24) at the international center of the Focolare Movement in Rocca di Papa, in the province of Rome. In a few days, Joaquín and the other 20 young Focolare members from the class of 2022-23 at the Loppiano Formation School will embark on their first assignments around the world. As a culmination of their preparation journey, this complete involvement in the life of the center, where the majority of offices representing and supporting various branches and expressions of the Focolare Movement at the international level are situated, becomes crucial.



“The experience has been incredibly enriching! We toured the offices that serve families worldwide, volunteers, and the headquarters of the Non-Governmental Organization of the Movement, New Humanity,” explains Matilde, an Italian. Our understanding of the centers dedicated to the younger generations has expanded through various workshops, and we were able to explore the educational paths they implement!.”

Another significant moment was the meeting with the working group that prepares the famous leaflet of the Word of Life, which, every month, translated into approximately 90 languages and dialects, reaches, also through various media, millions of people. “For me, it was a surprise! We know that the Word of Life exists; we take it for granted! But I had never wondered how it originated. Discovering the working method of this team was powerful,’ admits Agnès, an Indian. ‘We saw that it arises from unity, dialogue, and communion among people of different vocations, not from a single “thinking” person. That’s why, in my opinion, it can be lived by everyone. It made a very beautiful impression on me.”

As a completion of the immersive experience in the life of the international center, the members of the School of Formation of the Focolare Movement were able to spend the two weeks integrated into local Focolare communities. ‘It was a kind of internship, so to speak,’ explains Eric, a Burundian. ‘I was struck by how they welcomed me. We had the experience of living in a Focolare with people of different ages from our twenties. I felt right at home. I saw them as if they were my brothers; each one got up, went to school or work, and I also had my training commitment. I took it as an experience that was preparing me for the life that awaits me shortly!”

Agnès adds, “For me, living in the Focolare was also about becoming aware of the work that, during these 80 years of the Movement, God has done with humanity and humanity with God. I feel that I lack the practice, the experience. But what I lack, I found in the Focolare communities where I lived these days. After these weeks, I feel even more trusting in the greatness of God and also in the dream of our founder.”

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