“The Work of Mary” otherwise known as “The Focolare” is a world-wide spiritual movement within the Catholic Church, founded by Chiara Lubich, who consecrated her life to God with a perpetual vow of chastity in 1943, and a dedication to the charism of unity and love of neighbor. Since these founding days, The Focolare has become active across the globe in 194 countries, in an array of different ethnic, religious, and national settings.
Mariapolis’ (Little Cities of Mary), where communities of congregants live together in 33 of these actual little towns, are located throughout the world. Adherents may live there with consecrated members for several months or longer, living in the faith filled setting with others who have found meaning in community and love of neighbor. Formation centers in Italy provide the substance and studies for those interested in fully dedicating their lives to this movement. And Focolare centers and groups are accessible almost everywhere traveled.
Within the movement, many are on the list for beatification. One of our youngest contemporary saints, Blessed Chiara Luce Badano (1971-1990), was beatified by Pope Benedict on September 25, 2010. And the petition for the beatification of Chiara Lubich was submitted earlier this year.
Following the example of Jesus, who gave everything in the supreme redemptive love of all people (including those who crucified Him), the charism of Unity, and Love of Neighbor is established as the beacon guiding us all to the wish of Jesus, “that they may all be one.”
In 2014, St. Mark became one of the first parishes in the world to have The Focolare as one of its established ministries. Everyone desiring a deeper understanding of scripture and the love of neighbor is invited to attend the meetings on the third Sunday of each month, from 3-5 pm in rooms 201 and 202, in Christopher Hall.
Our monthly meetings explore the dynamics of living the words of scripture pertaining to life, community, neighbor, and love. This same scriptural passage is the focus of “Word of Life” groups meeting throughout the world during any particular month.
In addition to the Word of Life monthly meetings, city centers have larger seasonal gatherings, regions have annual retreats for members and families, and National and International events offer opportunities to gather with the wider Focolare Family. In recent years, youth members of the San Antonio Focolare Community have traveled to Rome for the Beatification of Chiara Luce Badano, to Budapest and Rio de Janeiro for World Youth Day.
For additional information about The Focolare (either for adults or children), please call:
Kay Parker .. 494-4517, Jim Lee – 403-0696 or Nick Young .. 402-6109