On 3 July 2021, in the Italian  town of Cortona, an escalator will be named after and an event will commemorate  the civic and political commitment of Spartaco Lucarini, politician, writer and journalist, one of the first married focolarini.  

This year marks the centenary of the birth of Chiara Lubich, founder of the Focolare Movement. All over the world a series of events are planned to remember this great woman of the twentieth century. Cortona will also remember her by naming the most modern access structure to the city, the escalators, after one of her early followers: Spartaco Lucarini, one of the first married focolarini. Spartaco loved his home town very much.” With these words Walter Checcarelli, president of the Cortona Christian Association, one of the promoters of the initiative, explained to the local newspaper L’Etruria the homage that Cortona will pay to Spartaco Lucarini, writer, politician and man of culture.

The naming ceremony for the escalators will take place on 3 July 2021 at 10.30 am (Italian time). This will be followed by a meeting at the Teatro Signorelli in Cortona to remember Lucarini and his social commitment to the political and cultural scene of the 20th century.

Lucarini was born in Cortona on 6 May 1924. In his home town he was always committed to social and civic life. He was a Town Councillor and one of the founders of the Tourist Board and the National Antique Furniture Exhibition. He met the Focolare Movement in 1949 through Silvana Veronesi, one of Chiara Lubich’s first companions, when they were both studying in Florence.

He was one of the first married focolarini, together with Igino Giordani and Danilo Zanzucchi. He was very close to the founder of the Focolare Movement, and it was she who suggested to Spartaco and his wife Iolanda Castellani (known to everyone as Lalla)  that they move with their five children from Cortona to Rome to work at the international headquarters of the Focolare.

Spartaco edited the magazine “Città Nuova” for several years. He contributed to the development of the “New Families” and “New Humanity” Movements and to the growth of  Loppiano, a little but international town of the Focolare near   Incisa and Figline in Valdarno, Italy. In particular, his involvement led to the start of the agricultural cooperative and the international school for families that are still based there today.

Anna Lisa Innocenti