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From West to East: Growing in Communion

The 5th meeting of entrepreneurs and leaders of the European EoC has ended in Croatia

by Gina Perkov

141017-19 Faro 05 ridWe shall live or die, but we’ll be together!’ A great applause followed the words of Augustin from Congo who chose these words to express his own gratitude for the possibility to be part of the EoC project. This is how the 5th meeting of entrepreneurs and leaders of the European EoC ended in Križevci, Croatia.

150 people from 23 countries were present; from Europe:  Croatia, Slovenia, Serbia, Macedonia, Romania, Bulgaria, Moldavia, Poland, Hungary, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Russia, and also Germany, Austria, Belgium, France, Switzerland, Italy, Portugal were represented, but there were participants even from Brazil, Argentina, the Democratic Republic of Congo and India.

The group of young people from 7 countries that participated in the exchange project 141017-19 Faro 07 rid"Together we grow: youth towards an inclusive economy" funded by the European Community participated all through the programme.

 In the morning we started by rolling the “company cube” on the sides of which there are “mottos” to be realised during the day. On Saturday morning this starting exercise was especially lively thanks to the performance of the children (Gen 4).

It was repeated several times that the Economy of Communion is not “a fact”, but “a process”. This meeting, too, has been a process, a communion being created day after day.

141017-19 Faro 12 ridThe suggestions received from Anouk Grevin and Luigino Bruni have been very important. What is the EoC today, at what stage are we right now and what is our prospect like? ‘To understand what this is one has to return to the year it was born, 1991’, said Luigino Bruni and he recalled three elements: the crown of thorns, the poor and the entrepreneurs. He then went on revealing that this is not enough, one has to return to '43 when Chiara's charisma was born. Chiara and her friends who offered lunch to poor people in their house using the best tablecloths and silver, are the first image of the EoC. In this image the poor person is inside their house and this is what is called fraternity.

The challenges that the EoC has to face were synthesised in 3 points by Luigino Bruni: a great ideal has to be launched and re-launched to all, the first of the poor are the youth today because they have no jobs and finally, the importance of doing things together with others (because God has granted the charisma of unity to the EoC).

In his conclusion he affirmed that history was always made by minorities, small but motivated groups – and since the EoC is also a small group, it may move the world. His words were echoed in many ways in the interventions of the 141017-19 Faro 06 ridentrepreneurs present. Moved by the affirmation that the youth are the firsts of the poor today for their lack of jobs, German entrepreneur Ludger Elfgen felt the urgency to offer an internship at his company to one of the young people present.

The three days at Mariapoli Faro were rich in testimonies of the entrepreneurs present. Nico Daenens from Belgium presented his company providing services of domestic assistance, with 3000 collaborators: Nico tries to place the person to the centre and to give dignity to this type of work every day. Koen and Chris from Belgium and Atila and Boglarka from Serbia told us about the cooperation born from the meeting of Ottmaring last year and has been realised in a company in Serbia.

Chantal and José Grevin from France talked about the importance 141017-19 Faro 09 ridof the industrial Poles, presenting the French "virtual pole" in which the businesses are interconnected in a spiritual way as they are located far away from the Little Town itself. Entrepreneurs from other countries spoke up, too and it all added up to a gift. The contribution of the Little Town of Faro was also felt: it hosted this very colourful and heterogeneous group composed of representatives from Eastern to Western Europe, and even 3 other continents. The young people showed a great interest in all the things they saw and discovered new visions. But their experience is going to continue until 22nd October.



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