Castel Gandolfo, 7th January 1996

During a profound dialogue with the married focolarini, answering one of their questions, Chiara Lubich shared with them how Mary Desolate was her “teacher” in knowing how to lose (so as to follow Jesus).

I would like to say a few words about Mary Desolate. Mary Desolate is our teacher in losing. Since I must communicate my soul to you, my practice is that when something useless comes to mind, I lose it, because... this useless thing bothers me. At this point our soul is accustomed to things that are light, gentle and beautiful. When something else comes in, a bit of the world... we feel uneasy, so then we understand: there’s an attachment here, a bit of pride there... an attachment to something.... We’re aware of this. So then, the only thing to do is to lose like Mary Desolate. We lose it and plunge ourselves into loving, into going ahead.
So let’s live this too.

However, during these days, I’ve realized something: by embracing Jesus forsaken and Mary Desolate, it’s as if I am fully clothed as a Christian in order to follow Jesus. I have put on my uniform and am ready to follow Jesus. In fact Jesus says: “Whoever wants to come after me...”, that is, whoever wants to follow me should do this and that, which means to live Mary Desolate and Jesus forsaken.
I realized that I am dressed and following Jesus step by step, but I want to see where He is leading me. I felt I had not yet reached where He was leading me. I know it from experience, in theory – because the Ideal has already told us everything.
So I said: ah yes, where is He leading me? He is leading me to love, to love Him, and He is telling me that in order to love Him, I must keep His words, His commandments, which are summed up in just one, which is the New Commandment, as Gérard also explained to you. Yes, that is where it is going; all the commandments have this goal, to fulfil the New Commandment.
I said to myself: Yes of course I want to follow Jesus, but I also want to love Him. So it is not enough to be dressed, to have the uniform of a Christian - I have the Christian uniform, I can follow Jesus. I also need to do what He wants. What does He want? He wants me to love Him and in order to love Him we need to love one another.

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