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Happy Birthday Chiara!

Happy birthday Chiara. You would have turned 100 today. I remember many birthdays celebrated together with you. Always simple, modest and private. Just like you, who much preferred small heart-to-heart meetings to big crowds and large conferences. The meeting with you and your 'Ideal' (the most beautiful of words) was the most important one in my life. I was 15, and 'saw' and 'touched' infinity. I did not encounter a movement, I heard a voice calling me by name, and I recognized it as the truest of voices, the most beautiful part of me. It was already there, inside of me, I recognized it. I started running, and never stopped again. I had the joy and privilege to work alongside you during the last ten years of your life, to give, together with many friends, scientific value to your Economy of Communion, and to study the spirituality of communion in the Abba School. Wonderful gifts, totally undeserved like all great gifts. Your legacy today has left me with three key concepts.

  1. Calling: it was so clear in you that life makes sense and is beautiful if lived as a vocation and therefore as a task and discipleship. We do not choose to Chiara Luigino rid 400be born, nor do we choose our most important encounters; we do not choose our calling, but once it arrives, we only need to say 'here I am'. And never cease to repeat it day after day, because once you begin to resurrect you should never stop; ;
  2. Jesus forsaken: This is the synthesis of your spirituality and your gift to humanity, its meaning (still to be fully discovered) was best expressed by Pier Paolo Pasolini: 'God is found where He is not'. A wonderful, unexpected, unprecedented intuition that in a world like ours, could teach us to find God where nobody imagines him to be. Infinite secularism, universality, beauty.
  3. Life: You were in love with life. You liked everything, you were enchanted by everything that was life, and you found the Spirit in everything that was alive. Everything is great on earth, and life is the greatest thing there is. This is why you were only fascinated by the present and the future, only by what you felt pulsating with life. You left me with this crazy love for life as an inheritance.

Today we can celebrate you by living and loving life. Just like you did. Finding God where He cannot be found. Repeating once more: Here I am.
Happy birthday Chiara. And thank you!

Yours, Luigino

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