11th August: Feast of St Claire of Assisi

Extract of a talk given by Chiara Lubich, to members of the Focolare Movement, on the Feast of St Claire, 11 August 1987.

“When we were young we were always greatly struck by a phrase that Saint Claire told St Francis when the latter drew her into following his way. St Francis asked her: “My child, what do you want?” One could expect all kinds of answers, like: “I would like to follow you in the way of poverty; I want to become a nun; I want to enter a convent,” and so on. Instead to the question “My child, what do you want?” she answered: “God”. She wanted God because she was choosing God as God had chosen her.

It’s the same choice that we also made at the beginning of the Focolare Movement. We made only one choice: God! Beyond the bombings and everything else, God emerged. We believed in God and we chose God as the ideal of our life.

This choice of God makes us put aside all those riches  that we may accumulate, perhaps even without realizing it. We might be rich of our work with the Focolare Movement, our possessions, our ideas, our studies, our relatives (…). Our ideal, which is Jesus Forsaken, who made himself nothing, makes us put all of this aside so as to have God first and do all the rest as an expression of the will of God.

This is what St Claire reminds us of again today. She did it by choosing the way of poverty; we do it by choosing the way of unity, always having Jesus in our midst, the Risen One, through our love for Jesus Forsaken.”

Chiara Lubich
Mollens (Switzerland), 11 August 1987

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