Randogne (Switzerland), 11 August 1982

For many years during the summer, and often in Switzerland, there was a traditional celebration on Chiara Lubich’s name day. On one occasion, after having asked Bishop Acacio to speak, Chiara’s gave a final greeting at the end as a thought for people to take with them. She invites everyone to learn from St Clare of Assisi how to abdicate ourselves completely and let Christ live in us.

Chiara Lubich after the Mass on the Feast Day of St. Clare:

... Today is the feast of St. Clare of Assisi. So this morning I read the Bull of Canonization of this great, very great saint of our Church. This Bull should be read because it’s wonderful! I don’t know how many times the word “clarity” was said, “light”, “clarity”, “brilliance”, “lamp”. All this means light, very bright light. But today it was not this aspect that impressed me, as it had on other occasions when I read the Bull of Canonization of St. Clare. Rather it was one word that was written there, that Clare of Assisi had abdicated, she had abdicated herself completely, denying herself, precisely because of her vocation to poverty, so as to let Christ live in her.

We too ought to lose everything, the bishop  said this. We must set aside everything today too. We too, even today. So what should we do? What is the point of our abdicating ourselves? It is for the Risen One who is in our midst. In order for the Risen Lord tolive in our midst, we must disappear, we should not exist.

Recently I read an essay by Father Arrupe on the mystery of the Trinity in the charism of St. Ignatius. It’s wonderful to see how he explains the life of the Holy Trinity, as it has also been understood by St. Ignatius, because of some special enlightenment. He says that the Persons of the Holy Trinity live in an ecstasy, which means they are always outside of themselves. For example, the Father finds himself while generating the Son, always ecstatic, always ecstatic.

In our small way, whatever way we can, we should imitate the lifestyle of the Persons of the Holy Trinity. We should live outside of ourselves, being ecstatic, not in an extraordinary, mystical ecstasy like some mystics have, but practically, by being what? By being the other, the will of God, if we need to pray, recollect ourselves or work. By being the other if we are in contact with our brothers and sisters.

So what can we say for today?

Today is the day of our total abdication.

We should do that... St. Clare teaches us to abdicate ourselves so as to be the will of God, wholly and completely. So if we are God’s will, which means to do this, or that, or to“live the other person”, then even today the Risen Lord is present among us. ...

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