Fondacio. Christians for the World
ALSO KNOWN AS
Fondacio was established in France under the name of Christian Formation Community, in the wake of Catholic Charismatic Renewal and at the initiative of Jean-Michel Rousseau, a young married layman. It was originally intended to provide Christian instruction for young adults, but from 1980, with the admission of people with social responsibilities and lay persons engaged in parish activities, it decided to broaden its sphere of activity and to become international in character. It was in those years that the new name was adopted, Foundations for a New World. In 1991, following a serious internal crisis, Rousseau and some of the membership quit the association. Many others were convinced that it was a work of God, and under the guidance of Gérard Testard they revived it with a more collegiate government. The Foundations were given recognition as an association of diocesan right by the Bishop of Versailles in 1995, the Archbishop of Santiago de Chile in 1996, and by the Archbishop of Brussels in 1998. Fondacio. Chrétiens pour le monde, the present name which it adopted in 2002, is a member of the Catholic Fraternity of Charismatic Covenant Communities and Fellowships (see page 27).
Fondacio is a Catholic association with an ecumenical dimension, bringing together members of the laity, married and unmarried, who are committed to a pathway of personal growth and conversion giving pride of place to their relationship with God, human and spiritual development, and community life. Its missionary work, which aims at evangelising men and women of our age, revolves around five focal points: young people, to whom the association offers the experience of God’s unconditional love; couples and families, with guidance for deepening their faith in order to discover the presence of God at the centre of their lives; seniors and older people, whom it invites to share their experience and their wisdom; people with social, political, entrepreneurial, and educational responsibilities, whom it helps to combine their professional commitments and their family, personal and spiritual life; forms of affective, psychological, spiritual and material poverty, with reference to the words of St James, "Faith without works is dead" (Jas 2: 26).
Fondacio is headed by a President elected by the International Congress, which convenes the delegates of the countries in which the association is present every four years, to lay down its guidelines for action. The decisions of the Congress are implemented by an International Council, which expresses the unity of all the component parts of Fondacio. The national branches are autonomous in the way they operate and in their missionary choices, and are each headed by a Council and by a Pastoral Assembly. There are fellowship members who wish to experience a living relationship with God and form small groups, through which they take part in the association’s missionary activities; community members, who wish to learn more about the faith and to strengthen their membership of the association, concluding a covenant with God and their fellows, and committing themselves to implementing specific missionary projects; permanent members, who respond to their calling to follow the school of Christ by placing all their energies and skills at the service of the mission for one or more years; members committed for life, who after a period of at least seven years’ membership of the association fully take on its spirituality, living a radical Gospel life in key areas of human existence.
Fondacio has about 3000 members in 20 countries, as follows: Africa (7), Asia, (4), Europe (5), Middle East (1), North America (1), and South America (2).
Fondacio performs its specific vocation of announcing the Good News through evangelisation projects and initiatives to support development in parts of the world afflicted by poverty, where the association has created activities to restore more humane living conditions and the dignity of children of God to the poor: homes for reintegration into society, dispensaries, schools, and vocational training centres. It has also established CIRFA (Centre International de Recherche et de Formation Appliqueés), which has two departments: the Faith and Commitment Institute, which provides instruction for those who wish to place themselves at the service of the Church, and the École Orientation Projet Engagement, which prepares people to serve in the world and provides training for humanitarian project leaders; and PNE (Partager Notre Espérance), an ecumenical group for parish evangelisation work.
Fondacio. Chrétiens pour le monde
5, rue Monsieur - 75007 Paris - France
Tel. [+33]1.39072934 - Fax 1.39070022