Chiara simply

libro_chiara-semplicementeBy T. Klann, M. Pochet and M. Vandeleene, was released by the Città Nuova Publishing House. A book of photos that recounts the 88-year life of the foundress of the Focolare Movement: it is the first work edited by the Chiara Lubich Center.

In addition, it contains largely unpublished photos which show Chiara as very human and approachable, without the diaphragm of microphones, cameras and stages. They show her in spontaneous attitudes, in different moments, in the simple depth of her relationships. The photos are captioned by comments from people with her in those moments, often allowing us to step into the intimacy of her thoughts, actions and soul.

Eli Folonari wrote in the introduction:

“Many have gotten to know Chiara – Chiara Lubich – by reading her books, by participating at a gathering or through seeing one of her videotaped talks in a distant city. ‘We only saw her behind a microphone’ some say with regret.

“Now, through this small volume of photographs, almost all unpublished, we want to allow the reader get to know another Chiara: the one in daily life, who writes, who welcomes her family at Christmas time… Chiara in moments of relaxation, in the intimacy of our focolare, during vacations in the mountains.

“But is it really another Chiara?

“For us who lived with her, there is no doubt that it’s the same person.

“To address a crowded stadium, to talk to an important world figure was the same for her as playing with a child, showing interest for the family next door or remaining in silence during a car trip.

“There was always something that drove her on, always, ‘from inside’ I would say. Every one of her actions seemed to be ‘guided’ by Another, and for this reason, every gesture, every step was like a decisive, sure answer. Her life was lived in Two, which led her through unforeseen circumstances to build a work of God. It simply happened like this, by obeying with dignity the voice of the Spirit in her, on the example of Mary.

“May these photos help us to understand Chiara from within: a mystery of love, accessible to everyone.

Rocca di Papa, 10 January 2009"

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