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Chiara Lubich/Focolare

Founder, Focolare Movement

Chiara Lubich (1920-2008) was founder of the Focolare Movement (The Work of Mary). Born in Trent, Italy, her baptismal name was Silvia. In 1943, when she entered the Third Franciscan Order, she took the name Chiara because she was attracted by St. Clare of Assisi’s radical choice of God. 1943 also marks the year that Chiara Lubich made a vow of chastity, and it has become the year associated with the birth of the Focolare. In the course of her life, she saw the spirituality of the Focolare – the spirituality of unity – grow around the world. She was awarded 15 honorary doctoral degrees, numerous civic awards, the Templeton Prize for Progress of Religion, and the UNESCO Peace Prize. She has published more than 50 books in 29 languages.

Today, the Focolare Movement that she founded is present in 182 countries. It has approximately 2 million adherents and people who are sympathetic to its goals – the majority being Roman Catholic. There is a growing number of non-Catholics from 350 churches and ecclesial communities. The Movement also includes many from other world faiths for example Jews, Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus and Sikhs. Then there are also those in the Movement who do not adhere to any particular religious faith.

The biographical information above was gleaned from several excellent websites, which you may want to visit for additional information. These links will open in a new window.

Books about Chiara Lubich and The Spirituality of the Focolare Movement

  • Chiara Lubich
  • Focolare Movement