Traces N.5, May 2018

A Journey We Walk Together

Dear friend, what you have in your hands is the new Traces. The changes are substantial, as you can see. We thought this was the right moment to go from the periodical to which you–and we–were accustomed, to a “news magazine” style. The nature of the magazine has not changed, but it will aim at going even deeper than before, presenting new content to help get to the bottom of a major theme selected each month, followed by additional articles, interviews, encounters, and first-hand reporting. The rhythm of the daily life of the Movement around the world will still be documented on the new English CL website ( and through social media.

We are setting out on a new journey, along with all of you, full of joy and the awareness that it is but an attempt. And so we begin with a topic that is especially urgent today: youth. In fact, Pope Francis is about to dedicate an entire Synod to this topic. In October, he will ask the universal Church to discuss “Young People, the Faith, and Vocational Discernment”; in other words, how people should choose their road in life in a world that’s increasingly complex and confusing. His first step is to ask for the input of young people, giving precedence to what they have to say, ready to listen to their questions, hopes, and dreams.

The first steps taken by this new Traces aim at contributing something to this project, accepting the challenge of an “exciting adventure” for the Church–as Julián Carrón, the international leader of CL, wrote in the introduction to his book recently published in Italy (La voce unica dell’ideale [The one voice of the ideal]) about “verifying if the Christian proposal still finds a place in the hearts of young people.” It’s a crucial question, because the future of the Church (and not only the Church) depends on this. It’s an adventure that’s not just for our children or our students, but–above all–for us, the adults. How willing are we to make this journey with them? What do we have to offer them? Young people “aren’t satisfied with words,” Carrón notes. “They need something at the same level of the desire in their hearts.”

Traces is, and will always be, an attempt to seek, study, and tell the tale of this “something.” A number of years ago, at the beginning of another change, we commented that, deep down, the nature of our magazine is simple: “It’s a friend that tells you: Look! Look at the great things Christ is doing in front of our eyes,” so we can get to know Him and He can be our companion on the journey. This is what we hope to do even better, in a format that is somewhat streamlined, and in which the common thread consists not of words and ideas, but of life itself–there can be no other way. It’s about life: witnesses and facts we can look at in order to comprehend their true depth and discover their origin. Happy reading and let’s enjoy this journey together.