|Rooted in the 16th Century
VATICAN CITY, 11 MAY 2006 (ZENIT)
Here is the description of the
Christian Life Community, which appears in the Directory of
International Associations of the Faithful, published by the Pontifical
Council for the Laity.
* * *
Official Name: Christian Life Community
History: The origins of CVX date back to the Marian congregations
created in 1563 by the Jesuit priest Jean Leunis and a group of students
from the Roman College who wished to follow in the foot steps of the lay
groups that had developed since 1540 in different parts of the world
thanks to the work of St. Ignatius Loyola and his companions.
In 1584, Pope Gregory XIII approved the first congregation in his bull "Omnipotentis
Dei," and in 1587 Pope Sixtus V issued his bull "Superna Dispositione"
authorizing the institution of other congregations affiliated to the
original one and open to everyone.
The serious crisis which the Society of Jesus suffered in the 18th
century, leading in 1773 to its suppression by Pope Clement XIV,
weakened the congregations which became a mass movement that was quite
different from what the founder had originally intended.
It was not until 1948, following the publication of the apostolic
constitution "Bis Saeculari" in which Pope Pius XII laid down guidelines
for the lay apostolate, that the need was felt to renew the Marian
or sodalities as they are called in some countries
and to group them together into an international federation.
In 1952 the World Federation of the Marian Congregations was
established, and after changing its name to the World Federation of the
Christian Life Communities it was recognized by the Holy See in 1971 as
a Catholic international organization. Its present name dates back to
1979. CVX is a member of the Conference of ICOs and as a nongovernmental
organization it has consultative status with the U.N. Economic and
Social Council and UNICEF. On Dec. 3, 1990, the Pontifical Council for
the Laity decreed the Christian Life Community to be an international
association of the faithful of pontifical right.
Identity: CVX is made up of Christians
men and women, young people and adults of every social condition
who wish to follow Jesus Christ and cooperate in building up the
Kingdom, bearing witness to their faith in every area of life, committed
to taking the teachings of the Church into the heart of human culture to
build up a more just and more fraternal society.
Membership to CVX comes as a response to a personal vocation, and is
preceded by a period of formation and temporary commitment. Its
educational method, centered on Christ and participation in the paschal
mystery, is based on Scripture, the liturgy, study of the magisterium of
the Church, reading the will of God in the events of history and in the
signs of the times.
The source and the instrument of CVX spirituality are the Exercises of
St. Ignatius Loyola. A central position is given to Our Lady in the life
of the community, for her cooperation in the work of redemption is the
supreme model for the members on which to base their own cooperation
with Christ's mission.
Organization: CVX is governed by the General Assembly, made up of the
Executive Council and the delegates of the national communities. The
Executive Council, which is responsible for implementing the decisions
and policies adopted by the General Assembly, comprises the president,
the vice president, the secretary, the treasurer, ecclesiastical
assistant, the deputy ecclesiastical assistant and three council
Similar management bodies exist at the national level. Other
associations of people wishing to share its lifestyle, without being
full members, may also be affiliated with the CVX.
Membership: CVX has about 123,000 members in 52 countries, in Africa,
Asia, Europe, North America and South America.
Works: CVX, whose members take part in the activities promoted worldwide
by the Society of Jesus, manages schools in Chile and Hong Kong,
spiritual retreat houses in France and various kinds of institutions in
the Philippines and in Chile.
Publications: Progressio, a biannual magazine; Projects, a quarterly
Web site: www.cvx-clc.net
Comunità di Vita Cristiana
Borgo Santo Spirito, 8
Tel. (39) 06-68-68079
© Copyright 2006
Libreria Editrice Vaticana [adapted]