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Piero Coda’s Trip to Germany

Piero Coda’s Trip to Germany

“Thoughts from the Charism of Unity’


January 25-27, 2013

 

On the initiative of the Spirituality Centre of the ecumenical Citadel of Ottmaring (Germany), represented by D. Wilfried Hagemann, with the presence of delegates from the Focolare Movement Renata Lauenroth, the provost of the IUS met with a group of 30 people of the Focolare Movement involved in various cultural fields.  Central to the meeting, the question on the cultural  incidence of the charism of unity in relationship to current situations, in many ways crucial, of the Church and of society in Germany.

 

Piero Coda a Ottmaring

Franz Sedlmeier, Matthias Sellmann, Piero Coda, Wilfried Hagemann, Renata Simon and Herbert Lauenroth

 

The evening of January 25, a first appointment by Piero Coda with prof. Matthias Sellmann (chair of Pastoral Theology at the Ruhr-University of Augsburg) took place, characterized by deep reciprocal listening and by an exchange of experiences and reflections at a spiritual and intellectual level.  The meeting concluded with a resolution to continue (once a year at Loppiano, Bochum or Augsburgh) these moments of sharing in view of a profitable and more intense collaboration between the different academic requests. 

 

The following day Coda met with a group of qualified cultural representatives of the Focolare Movement in Germany.  In answer to their evaluations about the phase of cultural passage we are undergoing, not without painful challenges – which evoke qualified voices, such as this theologian’s, Hans Urs von Balthasar, or the philosopher George Steiner, who spoke of a “Holy Saturday culture” – the provost from Sophia, underlined three fundamental aspects for a better reading of this moment in our time.

 

We are witnessing, according to Coda, to a “Kairos” which speaks of a new “birth” and a new “epiphany of God” in the midst of the world.  Starting with the daring affirmation by Chiara Lubich on the mystery of the abandonment of God in Jesus: “In Him is all of heaven with the Trinity and all of earth with Humanity,” Coda put in better evidence the “Focus” according to which one “enters” into the reality of God only in the measure in which one becomes one with the reality of man.  For this collocation in the story of Jesus – which Coda described with the German term  “Raum” (space) -, new spaces can be disclosed of “strategic” importance, to become, within the Church and lay culture, carriers and pioneers of the “Reign of God.”

 

Elisa Kroeger, doctoral student in the Faculty of Theology of the University of Munster, told of the existential path of her research, in which thought and life converge.  In the experience lived at Sophia, this research found completion: in a “style” and in a “methodology” of a new interdisciplinary and multicultural cut that introduces all of its protagonists to the articulated unity of knowledge.  A participant commented: “Until now I had a certain pre-comprehension, a suspicion regarding “Sophia”, which today has been taken away …”

 

Elisa Kroeger

 

During the two days a new space of communion opened up amongst all; experiencing the joy that springs from a culture based on an Easter dynamic: it is by starting from listening and by the welcoming of the other that one comes to a new form of thought and of life, a new “Denk” – and “Lebensform”, inspired on a Trinitarian vision of reciprocity.  A commitment described in extreme synthesis by Piero Coda, to conclude: “It is not so much the maturing of a thought on the charism of unity, but rather a thought that begins from the charism of unity.”

 

Text: Renata Simon, Wilfried Hagemann, Herbert Lauenroth

Foto: Ursel Haaf

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