From a Memory, a Presence; From the Memory, the Presence

Notes from Luigi Giussani’s address to the Assembly of Responsibles of Communion and Liberation. Milan, January 7, 2003.

Luigi Giussani

Thank you for the chance you are giving me, not only to greet you, but also to insist on what we are saying to each other, because if we take away the words that express it, if we took these words away from our life, we would go back to being nothing, just as we were in our mother’s womb.

Do not be afraid, do not be timid, do not be impatient.

I was moved by your talks. There was not one of them that did not call forth something in me.

I would summarize everything, the problem in its entirety, in two things to stress–in words that express these two stressed things. And a problem that touches man in his entirety is a “human” problem, we say: what man is, what man must be, what he is and what he must be, because everything spurs him on to something new.

Presence. Something has made itself present in the world and we “bear” it on ourselves, like a triumphal chariot, on our thoughts or in the painful depths of certain moments.

Christ is presence, He is present. A presence!

It is a presence that changes the world which emerges in front of our eyes, for which our heart beats. It is a different presence that makes different–we say “converts”–the things we do, that makes our actions different, in other words, the self-awareness expressed in acts, in attitudes, so that our life too becomes presence.

May a presence make us present with patience, with a faithfulness that pierces through the error of so many moments, the distraction of so many days!

My wish for you is that Our Lady may make you feel, our wish for ourselves is that Our Lady may make us feel this difference of the presence that we become for all the world–a presence that is different because Christ is there; a “Christian” presence.

Thank you!