A Guide to Religions, Religious Information and Help in Search for God


Focalare (an Italian word meaning hearth or family fireside) is a religious movement that was founded by Chiara Lubich (born on January 22, 1920) and her friends in Trent, Italy in 1943 (during World War II). In the beginning, it involved only members of the Catholic Church. In 1958, it included all Christians and later, also included members of all religions and those with no religion. The Focalare Movement was approved by Pope John XXIII of the Roman Catholic Church in 1962. The Focalare movement has an estimated 70,000 members and 1,200,000 friends.

A passage from the Gospels is chosen each month and used as a guideline for living. Participating in the Focalare movement is to live the Gospel on a daily basis.

There are "mini-cities" or communities inhabited by core members throughout the world. Over 100 meetings called "Mariapolises" are held during the summer at these "mini-cities".

The first permanent Mariapolis was established at Loppiano, Italy in 1964 and now has about 500 inhabitants. In the North America, the Mariapolis is held at Hyde Park, New York and named "Mariapolis Luminosa".


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