WHAT IS THE EOC?
The Economy of Communion is an inundation of the Focolare Movement that aims to bring people together through economic activity. It is an invitation to concretely live in an ‘inclusive way,’ together with everyone in our lives. It is rooted in the two ideals of the Focolare charism: that we might all be one; and, that no one among us be in need. It therefore is a collaboration of those in material and spiritual need with entrepreneurs, their companies, customers, employees, competitors and suppliers in a global effort to create material and spiritual abundance. Ultimately, it aims to freely share that abundance in ways that leaves no one behind.
During a visit to Sao Paulo, Brazil 25 years ago, Chiara Lubich saw from the plane’s window the stark contrast of the city’s skyscrapers surrounded by a ring of ‘favelas,’ or makeshift homes or shanties. It was the reality of the few who have surrounded by the many who have not.
She realized that, even with the presence of a small community of the Focolare in the city trying to put material goods in common so that no one is in need, it cannot be enough to sustain the sheer number of the economically challenged. She understood that there should be a global economic effort to work together for a more equitable distribution of wealth so that no one will be left behind.
25 years from its founding in 1991, the Economy of Communion (EOC) now includes students, scholars, businesspeople, religious and lay people, teachers, as well as the disadvantaged and marginalized members of our society in a combined effort to promote economic activity that serves real human needs. One of the crucial manifestations of this project is the more than 800 businesses around the world (including the Philippines), whose owners and founders commit their business activities to the goals that Ms. Lubich had envisioned.