01-02-2006 - Traces, n.2

Sisters of Charity of the Assumption

Fr. Luigi Giussani Founder of the Sisters of Charity of the Assumption, along with Fr. Pernet
The Sisters of Charity of the Assumption announce that their General Chapter, held last November, declared Fr. Giussani founder of the Institute along with Fr. Pernet, and that the Holy See approved and confirmed this decision on January 17, 2006.

The religious Institute of the Sisters of Charity of the Assumption was erected in 1993, by Pontifical Decree, as an autonomous institute which separated from that of the Little Sisters of the Assumption in which many young women from CL entered during the 1960s. Fr. Giussani was very struck by the simplicity and the charity that those sisters were living and had acknowledged a correspondence with his way of understanding and living the Christian life. He therefore directed those vocations more sensitive to the aspect of charity that arose in his movement towards that experience. Historical developments in the Church following the Vatican Council gave rise to a progressive differentiation, and led to the birth of a new religious family, which found in Fr. Giussani the guide for living in today’s world the charism of the founder Fr. Stephen Pernet, who had lived in the 19th century. Struck by the material and moral poverty in which working-class families were living, and their distance from the Church, Fr. Pernet gave birth to a community in which consecrated women dedicated themselves to service of the family, sharing their concrete needs through care for the sick and service in the home, thus witnessing the love of Christ present in the Church and reawakening the faith through charity. From the start, it was an apostolic work, intent, as the founder said, on “rebuilding the people of God.” The Sisters of Charity of the Assumption carry on today the same mission, keeping in mind the changes in society that often make it necessary to insert themselves with their own identity in the network of local organizations. Their work is aimed at the family, through home help for the sick, for children in need, and old people, bearing in mind always the dignity of the person, to be respected for the very fact of its existence. This gives rise to a fascinating adventure of sharing, in which the person is valued because wanted and loved by Christ and his life has a meaning because it has a destiny of hope. The institute today is made up of about one hundred members. The course of formation, though faithful to the characteristics proper to religious life, follows closely, in its methods and contents, that of the Memores Domini, recognizing in the latter the wealth that Fr. Giussani’s charism offers for the varied forms of virginity. The sisters are present in Milan, Turin, Trieste, Rome, Naples and Cordoba (Spain).