Communion and Liberation is an ecclesial movement whose purpose
is the education to Christian maturity of its adherents and collaboration
in the mission of the Church in all the spheres of contemporary life.
It began in Italy in 1954 when Fr Luigi Giussani established
a Christian presence in Berchet high school in Milan with a group
called Gioventù Studentesca (Student Youth), GS for short.
The current name of the movement, Communion and Liberation (CL),
appeared for the first time in 1969. It synthesizes the conviction that
the Christian event, lived in communion, is the foundation of the authentic
liberation of man. Communion and Liberation is today present
in about seventy countries throughout the world.
There is no type of membership card, but only the free participation
of persons. The basic instrument for the formation of adherents
is weekly catechesis, called “School of Community.”
The official magazine of the Movement is the international monthly,
Traces – Litterae Communionis
The essence of the charism given to Communion and Liberation can be signaled by three factors.
- first of all, the announcement that God became man (the wonder, the reasonableness, the enthusiasm for this): “The Word was made flesh and dwells among us.”
- secondly, the affirmation that this man – Jesus of Nazareth dead and risen – is a present event in a “sign” of “communion,” i.e., of unity of a people guided, as a guarantee, by a living person, ultimately the Bishop of Rome;
- thirdly: only in God made man, man, therefore only in His presence and, thus only through – in some way – the experienceable form of His presence (therefore, ultimately only within the life of the Church) can man be truer and mankind be truly more human. St Gregory Nazianzen writes, “If I were not Yours, my Christ, I would feel like a finished creature”. It is thus from His presence that both morality and the passion for the salvation of man (which is mission) spring up.
Addresses and countries where the Movement is present
Documents By Luigi Giussani
Fr Giussani’s letter to John Paul II on the occasion of the fiftieth anniversary of the birth of Communion and Liberation. January 26th, 2004
Fr Giussani’s letter to the Holy Father, Pope John Paul II, on the occasion of the twenty-fifth anniversary of his Pontificate. Panorama, October 30th, 2003
Fr Giussani’s letter to the Fraternity following the annual pilgrimage to Loreto. June 22nd, 2003
Fr Giussani’s letter to the Fraternity for the twentieth anniversary of the Pontifical recognition of the Fraternity of Communion and Liberation. February 22nd, 2002
Fr Giussani’s testimony as presented at the Pontifical Council for the Laity’s Seminar, “Ecclesiastical movements and the new communities in the pastoral care of the Bishops”. June 18th, 1998
How a movement is born. 1989