Sainthood cause of Father Luigi Giussani: Milan Archdiocese to begin collecting testimonies

1960 Varigotti SV Father Luigi Giussani with students during the Tower Ray Credit Communication and Liberation Official Site CNA 1960. Varigotti (SV). Father Luigi Giussani with students during the Tower Ray. | Credit: Communion and Liberation Official Site

The Archdiocese of Milan announced on Monday that it will begin collecting testimonies for the canonization cause of Servant of God Luigi Giussani, the founder of the lay Catholic movement Communion and Liberation.

Archbishop Mario Delpini will hold the first public session of the testimonial phase of Giussani’s cause in the Basilica of Sant’Ambrogio on May 9, the solemnity of the Ascension. 

During this new phase in Giussani’s sainthood cause, people who knew the Italian priest will share their testimonies with a specially formed commission. 

Giussani (1922–2005) founded Communion and Liberation in the 1950s in Milan in response to “having felt the urgency to proclaim the need to return to the elementary aspects of Christianity.” 

In the 70 years since its founding, the movement has grown to have 60,000 members in 90 countries. 

During his life, Giussani encountered many young people as a teacher, author, and university lecturer and developed an educational method that emphasized encounter, as outlined in one of his many books, “The Risk of Education.”

Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, who delivered the homily at Giussani’s funeral in 2005, said that Giussani “understood that Christianity is not an intellectual system, a packet of dogmas, a moralism; Christianity is rather an encounter, a love story; it is an event.”

Giussani’s beatification process was first opened in 2012. Two miracles attributed to his intercession are required for him to be named a saint in the Catholic Church.

Communion and Liberation’s President Davide Prosperi welcomed the news that Giussani’s cause is advancing “with great joy” in a statement released on April 15.

“This is a fundamental step in the beatification process of our dear Father Giussani,” he said.

“We are also very grateful to Pope Francis for the attention and esteem that he has repeatedly expressed, also publicly, for the figure of Father Giussani and for the path that the movement is taking in this period,” he added.

Prosperi said that members of Communion and Liberation will continue to ask for Giussani’s intercession in prayer, “placing the irrepressible desire we carry in our hearts to soon see Father Giussani counted among the blessed and saints of the Lord in the hands of the Church.”

Chiara Minelli is the postulator for Giussani’s cause for the Archdiocese of Milan.

“I was given the gift of faith so I could give it to others, communicate it,” Giussani said.

“That people come to know Christ, that humanity comes to know Christ, this is the task of those who are called, the task of the people of God, the mission: ‘I have chosen you, that you may go forth.’”

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