Meeting Father Giussani nowadays. A modern faith through the meeting with the other

Press Meeting

With the presence of Gianni Riotta, Massimo Borghesi and Pietro Modiano

Rimini, August 22nd 2015 – “You all know how important was for Father Giussani the experience of meeting: not considered as an idea, but as a person, Jesus Christ”. Recalling Pope Francis words’ at the encounter with Comunion and Liberation on March 7th 2015, Alberto Savorana, spokesman of the movement, introduced the main theme of the convention that took place in room Eni B1. Three important exponents of different professionals boundaries talked about their different approaches, direct or indirect, with Father Giussani’s thought and they questioned on the actuality of the contribute that CL’s founder can suggest to contemporary man, relating to complex challenges in our society.

It was spontaneous to remember the figure of Father Francesco Ventorino, recently passed away. As Father Julian Carron remarked, with his life he was a witness of the fecundity in following the charm of the Lombard priest. Giussani’s vocation to meeting – marked Savorana – was fed by “a deep sympathy for the entire human experience he met during his life”, which gave him “a desire to embrace that didn’t exclude anyone”, he was sure what he was fascinated by had a universal range. “The greatness of Christian faith, without any other comparison – Giussani said – is this: Christ answered to human question. Feeling your own humanity, “the lack in your life, is the essential condition to understand that answer and locate every speech of the priest.
That necessity was remarked by the first relator, the columnist of “La Stampa” Gianni Riotta, who warned from the leaning, especially on the media, to presuppose possible answers of Father Giussani to episodes and contemporary problems. “The breath of founder’s of CL is wider – affirmed the journalist – since ‘70s it appeared focused on bigger perspectives – as for contents and duration – than the short-lived critics of his cultural opponents”. It will be fundamental, as Riotta said recalling Father Carron exhortation “to look at what Giussani said, not at what he would have said, at what Giussani did, not at what he would have done”.
In particular it will be useful imitating his behavior of questioning “the only possible antidote to that claim of demonize the other which dominates all Western society”, that in every sphere of life, points as an enemy who thinks or lives in a different way (“paradoxally reproducing the terroristic ideology”). The hope to react to that tendency, Riotta said, is evident in events such as the Meeting, opened since 36 years to dialogue with exponents of every kind of political and cultural current.
Massimo Borghesi, Philosophy moral professor at Perugia University, mentioning the subtitle of his recent book “Luigi Giussani. Amorous knowledge and experience of truth”, marked that the itinerary of the lombardo priest was a modern one. “This thanks to his ability of looking at reality which wasncharacterized by a reactive and opened sensibility to human problems”. Examples of this are the success of his educative line and the appreciation of atheist authors but deeply standing in their life. Two fundamental categories project Giussani’s thought beyond XX century, in a modern dimension: the religious sense and experience, that gave him the disposability to dialogue with everything that, even if different and unexpected, a man can face. He reintroduced that categories in Italian religious dialogue in an original way, releasing them from the suspects of modernism and reinserting them in church’s tradition, through truth’s principle, which Giussani considered the same as liberty. “The first, in an objective way, can’t exist without a personal existential and suffered path, and as for the second – specified Borghesi – it’s just the union of this two instance that can insert fully faith in history”.

A third category, the meeting, makes Giussani’s thought not only modern but also actual. “Being opened to the encounter – said the philosopher – allows catholic charm to face different challenges of present. The only possible attitude of reversion to evangelic origins, which is not traduced in conservatism, but in a complete historical judgment.
The importance of Giussani’s concept of “meeting” was testified by the third relator, Sea’s president (Airport exercises society) Pietro Modiano, who talked about his cultural and politic education. “An education set in Milan in a contest contemporary with CL’s story, but it apparently looked like very different”. His recent comparison with some friends belonging to the Movement grew from the recognition of a common unity even in differences, “an amorous knowledge”, which is identified in the “religious sense”. If, as Leopardi felt long before Giussani, it consists of the conflict between finite and infinite perceived from man of every time, the solution that Giussani proposes – the relator recognized – is the “encounter with friends that that trough love, teach you loving others and Other beyond them”.
Modiano could have experienced the Meeting, even if it’s often accused of being omologated and sectarian, is a perfect expression of Giussani’s penetration: “A place of liberty is where you can ask serious question, on the tendency of going beyond finite, questions that teaches looking an Other and wins the tendency to overpowering”.