Communion and Liberation

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Communion and Liberation
Comunione e Liberazione
FounderLuigi Giussani
ServicesDe Facto Money and other kind of subsidies for companies and privates, De Facto illegal distribution of public contracts,[2] Legal Protection,[3] Business Favors[4]
300,000 (estimated) [1][5]
Official language
LeaderJulián Carrón[1]
Key people
Dionigi Gianola, Bernhard Scholz (business managers),[6][7][8] Rocco Buttiglione,[9][10] Roberto Formigoni,[11] Maurizio Lupi [12][13] former Political Spokespersons
Parent organization
Company of the Works business association (Italian: Compagnia delle Opere)
~100 million Euro[citation needed]

Communion and Liberation (Italian: Comunione e Liberazione, often shortened to CL) is an Italian Catholic movement founded in 1954 by Fr. Luigi Giussani in the Milan area. It began as a branch of the Catholic Action by the name of "Gioventù Studentesca" (Student Youth), and after the protests of 1968, it reorganized as Communion and Liberation in 1969 and is now present in more than 70 countries. It is characterized by the message that faith is fundamental to every aspect of one's life.[14][15] Membership is estimated to be over 300,000, comprised mainly of lay people.[16]

Its ideals lead to an engagement in social causes, from the creation of private schools and a number of charitable projects, such as the Italian Banco Alimentare,[17] to an involvement in politics through the Italian People's Movement Party and affiliated members. The group has been accused of causing conflicts of interest and lobbying, while a number of notable members [18][19][20] and connected cooperatives [21] have been sentenced for crimes of corruption, bribery and fraud. The current president of the movement, Fr. Julián Carrón, answered scandals with open letters in 2012 and 2015 published in the national newspaper La Repubblica,[22][23] condemning such behaviours as against Giussani's teachings while confessing the group's "great humiliation".


1969: Foundation[edit]

Communion and Liberation originally grew out of the educational and catechetical methods of Don Luigi Giussani, who founded the movement in 1969. Giussani developed these methods through his work within the Catholic youth association "Student Youth" (Italian: Gioventù Studentesca) born in 1954 at Berchet High School in Milan, where Giussani was a school teacher.

1970-Present: Evolution of CL illegaly controlling part of Italian Public Administration[edit]

Communion and Liberation activities underwent a change of direction in the wake of the Italian large-scale bribery and corruption scandals, in which some Communion and Liberation adherents were implicated. In Italy many members of the movement were highly supportive of Silvio Berlusconi, first under the umbrella of a party called The United Christian Democrats, in 1998 within the Italian political party Forza Italia. Roberto Formigoni, a former Communion and Liberation political spokesperson was elected Regional President of Italian Region Lombardy in 1995. He has been reelected three times since then.[24]


Communion and Liberation movement members are estimated to be about 300,000 in Italy. Communion and Liberation movement is composed by three main branches:[25][26]

  • Company of the Works (Italian: Compagnia delle opere): Business association conglomerate who comprends about 30,000 Italian companies and 1,000 no profits companies[26]
  • Communion and Liberation University: College and University branch of the movement composed by Italian Universities students [25]
  • Student Youth Group (Italian: Gioventù Studentesca): High School members in several Italian cities are educated through weekly meetings to deal and exchange favours with other Communion and Liberation members.[26][25]

The main annual event of Communion and Liberation is the Meeting for friendship among peoples on August in Rimini, Italy and it's an open to the public event.[26]

Company of the Works[edit]

Company of the Work (Italian: Compagnia delle Opere) is an Italian Association created by the movement Communion and Liberation that includes more tha 35,000 Italian companies (banks, schools, Universities, Hospitals, Consulting Agencies, etc.) and 1,000 no profit organizations.[27] [28][25]

Annual meeting[edit]

The Meeting for friendship among peoples (also known in Italian "Meeting di Rimini, Meeting in Rimini), is an Italian event organized by the Communion and Liberation movement held every year on August in Rimini, Italy since 1980. The Communion and Liberation meeting is a large scale rendezvous between companies, CEOs, Italian Ministers, business persons, and CL activists. It has been a subject of controversy owing to potential conflicts of interest. The event is entirely staged and managed by 4,000 Italian volunteers. The meeting has had about 800,000 attendees per year in the last editions.[29]


Investigations on involved Italian companies[edit]

Several Italian newspapers wrote about the possibility that some Italian Banks are illegally controlled by Communion and Liberation (Banco BPM and Banca Popolare di Milano), it is said that their actual CEO Giuseppe Castagna is a member of the Communion and Liberation movement and he faced several conflicts of interest and he is investigated since 2016 because he gave bank fundings for millions Euro towards his personal Communion and Liberation friends to receive business favors and due money laundering.[30] Other banks includes: Credito Siciliano Bank, Intesa Sanpaolo Bank, Artigiancassa Spa Bank, Akros Bank, and Intesa Bank.[31][32][4] Italian newspaper La Repubblica wrote about several Italian Companies are illegally controlled by Communion and Liberation in 2011(CityLife, Ge.Fi, Montagna Costruzioni, Sinesis, Green Holding, Cooperativa La Cascina).[31] Italian newspaper La Repubblica wrote about several public Italian hospitals that are illegally controlled by Communion and Liberation; Niguarda Milan Hospital, Maggiore Milan Hospital.[31]

Conflicts of interest[edit]

Company of the Works and Communion and Liberation is considered by many workers a problem in Italy; because Communion and Liberation movement companies CEOs hire only other CL people to get financial favours from them.[25]

2000s: Italian political election voting trade issue[edit]

Participation in the Communion and Liberation movement can involve a relatively low degree of commitment, such as attending a weekly catechesis up to 10 people known as a "School of Community". In cities with a larger CL presence there may be multiple Schools of Community. The Schools of Community usually open up with prayer, often in the form of the Angelus. This is usually followed by the singing of songs. Next, the School of Community will read and discuss together some text, focusing both on what it says and comparing it to one's own lived experience. In Italy, over 300,000 persons participate in the weekly School of Community.

2015: Mafia capitale corruption case[edit]

Communion and Liberation movement has been accused of illegally getting a contract to build an immigration center in 2015.[2]

Italian court sentences[edit]

2002-2015: Italian Region Lombardy CL spokesperson Italian courts sentences[edit]

Roberto Formigoni, a former Communion and Liberation and Company of the Works political spokesperson, has been judged on 2002 due bribery due the landfill in Cerro Maggiore, Italy.[33] Formigoni has been processed through the Italian Courts due to illegal environmental pollution on December 2009.[34][35][36]

Formigoni was interrogated by Italian Court in Rome due to the Propaganda mansory group.[37][38][39]

Formigoni has been condemned for one year of imprisonment due to defamation issues on 12 July 2012.[40] Formigoni has been condemned due to bribery on 25 July 2012 by Italian courts.[41][42] On 12 February 2013 he has been investigated due to criminal group activities.[43]

On 3 March 2014, Formigoni has been condemned due to criminal association activities and due to bribery.[44] On 15 April 2016, Formigoni has been condemned for 9 years and he has been considered by the Italian Courts "Boss of criminal group" due to his tactical bribery that lasted more than 10 years while he managed more than 70 million euro public money.[45][46]

Formigoni has been condemned due to defamation of the Italian judge Alfredo Robledo.[47]

2016: CL priest condemned due to child sexual abuses[edit]

The Communion and Liberation movement Italian priest Mauro Inzoli (nicknamed "Don Mercedes" due to his luxurious Mercedes Sports car) who used to manage the Communion and Liberation "Food Counter" (Italian: Banco Alimentare) initiative to help very poor people giving them food for free, was convicted of child molestation against 5 children in 2016.[48][49][50][51]

Related groups[edit]

  • Company of the Works (Italian: Compagnia delle Opere), the business umbrella chapter of Communion and Liberation[16]
  • Communion and Liberation University, the college umbrella chapter of Communion and Liberation[16]
  • Student Youth (Italian: Gioventù Studentesca), the high school chapter of Communion and Liberation[16]
  • Sant Egidio Community[16]

Further reading[edit]

  • Communion and Liberation: A Movement in the Church by Davide Rondoni
  • Comunione e Liberazione by Massimo Camisasca, (San Paolo, 2001-2006, 3 Volumes)
  • Comunione e Liberazione by Salvatore Abbruzzese (Il Mulino, Bologna, 2001)
  • La lobby di dio (God's Lobby in English), a journalistic inquiry about the Movement by Ferruccio Pinotti (in Italian)
  • The Pope's Armada: Unlocking the Secrets of Mysterious and Powerful New Sects in the Church, Gordon Urquhart, Bantam Press (1 June 1995), ISBN 0-593-03388-4
  • Comunione e Liberazione: A Fundamentalist Idea Of Power", Dario Zadra, (University of Chicago Press, Chicago, 1994, pp. 124–128 – Fundamentalism Project)
  • Fundamentalisms Observed Martin E Marty, R Scott Appleby, (University of Chicago Press, 1 lug 1994), ISBN 0-226-50878-1
  • Italy: A Difficult Democracy Frederic Spotts, Theodor Wieser, (Cambridge University Press, 30 April 1986), ISBN 0-521-31511-5
  • Strong Religion Gabriel Abraham Almond, R Scott Appleby, Emmanuel Sivan, (University of Chicago Press, 15 gen 2003), ISBN 0-226-01498-3


  1. ^ a b c Pinotti, Ferruccio (2011). "About this Book". In Chiarelettere Editore Srl, Chiarelettere Editore Srl. La Lobby di Dio. Chiarelettere Editore Srl. pp. 3–7. ISBN 978-88-6190-170-4.
  2. ^ a b "Julian Carron: "Un'enorme delusione ma Cl è agli antipodi"". 11 June 2015.
  3. ^ "Inchieste e scandali: Cl ora non ha più potere". 6 April 2015.
  4. ^ a b "Comunione e Liberazione, fatturato giù di 2 milioni. Ma quanti amici per il Meeting: dai signori del gioco d'azzardo alle banche - Il Fatto Quotidiano". 20 August 2015.
  5. ^ "Che cos'è Comunione e Liberazione - Il Post".
  6. ^ "Bernhard Scholz: "Compagnia delle opere non favorisce privilegi e guadagni illeciti"". 23 January 2013.
  7. ^ "Bernhard Scholz: L'Italia deve ripartire dall'identità e dai valori delle medie imprese". 20 February 2018.
  8. ^ "Bernhard Scholz è il nuovo presidente di Compagnia delle Opere". 4 April 2008.
  11. ^ "Tutti i ciellini del presidente. Piccola mappa della diaspora del fu potere Celeste".
  12. ^ Vico, Dario Di. ""Ha creduto di essere diventato il capo" Ora Cl vuole il divorzio da Formigoni".
  13. ^ "Senza Formigoni e Lupi la rete di Cl è più forte di prima". 29 August 2016.
  14. ^ "Comunione e liberazione su treccani".
  15. ^ Alberto,, Savorana,. The life of Luigi Giussani. Montreal. ISBN 0773552170. OCLC 1028904627.
  16. ^ a b c d e Pinotti, Ferruccio (2011). "About this Book". In Chiarelettere Editore Srl, Chiarelettere Editore Srl. La Lobby di Dio. Chiarelettere Editore Srl. pp. 3–7. ISBN 978-88-6190-170-4.
  17. ^ "Banco alimentare fondazione".
  18. ^ "Formigoni condannato".
  19. ^ "sistema corrotto appalti".
  20. ^ "Catholic Group Gripped by Scandal".
  21. ^ "condanna mafia capitale".
  22. ^ "da chi ha sbagliato un umiliazione per cl".
  23. ^ "un enorme delusione ma cl è agli antipodi".
  24. ^ Pinotti, Ferruccio (2011). "Here the comes the politics". In Chiarelettere Editore Srl, Chiarelettere Editore Srl. La Lobby di Dio. Chiarelettere Editore Srl. pp. 20–35. ISBN 978-88-6190-170-4.
  25. ^ a b c d e Pinotti, Ferruccio (21 December 2010). "La lobby di Dio". Chiarelettere – via Google Books.
  26. ^ a b c d "Ecco il primo libro-inchiesta su Comunione e Liberazione -".
  27. ^ Pinotti, Ferruccio (2011). "Le mani sull'economia". In Chiarelettere Editore Srl, Chiarelettere Editore Srl. La Lobby di Dio. Chiarelettere Editore Srl. pp. 9–17. ISBN 978-88-6190-170-4.
  28. ^ "Compagnia delle opere: cosa fa il braccio economico di Cl - Sky TG24".
  29. ^ "Blog - Comunione e Liberazione, i poteri forti in mostra al meeting di Rimini - Il Fatto Quotidiano". 19 August 2016.
  30. ^ "Riciclaggio, i soldi nelle casseforti lussemburghesi di Intesa Sanpaolo e Ubi e quell'inchiesta archiviata - Il Fatto Quotidiano". 1 July 2016.
  31. ^ a b c "Cl, la mappa del potere". 27 February 2011.
  32. ^ "Il sistema di potere di Comunione e liberazione - Il Fatto Quotidiano". 22 August 2010.
  33. ^ "La Repubblica/cronaca: Formigoni rinviato a giudizio per la discarica di Cerro".
  34. ^ "Inquinamento in Lombardia: indagati Formigoni, Podesta' e Letizia Moratti - Politica -".
  35. ^ "Inquinamento, Formigoni indagato dai pm di Milano - Milano".
  36. ^ "Smog, indagato anche Penati - Milano".
  37. ^ La P3 agì su mandato di Formigoni Archived 2010-07-17 at the Wayback Machine.
  38. ^ ""Il gruppo agì per conto di Formigoni "Cesare" pseudonimo del premier" - Corriere della Sera".
  39. ^ "Per il gruppo Berlusconi era "Cesare" Informativa tira in ballo Formigoni e Caliendo".
  40. ^ La Repubblica, Formigoni condannato per diffamazione, 11 October 2012.
  41. ^ "Formigoni indagato per corruzione "Non temo nulla, resto al mio posto"".
  42. ^ "Le accuse «Yacht, viaggi e una villa Tangenti per 7 milioni in cambio di 15 delibere".
  43. ^ "Maugeri, chiusa inchiesta, Formigoni fra indagati associazione delinquere".
  44. ^ "Caso Maugeri, Formigoni sarà processato per associazione a delinquere e corruzione". La Repubblica. 3 March 2014. Retrieved 3 March 2014.
  45. ^ "Roberto Formigoni, chiesti nove anni per ex governatore nel processo Maugeri. Pm: "Corruzione sistemica"".
  46. ^ "Caso Maugeri, via libera al sequestro di pensione e vitalizi di Formigoni: 5 milioni di euro". Retrieved 17 August 2018.
  47. ^ "Oil for food, "Formigoni diffamò pm Robledo, versi 40mila euro" - Il Fatto Quotidiano". Il Fatto Quotidiano (in Italian). 20 January 2014. Retrieved 20 May 2018.
  48. ^ "Pedofilia, spretato don Inzoli: la decisione di papa Francesco dopo la condanna". 28 June 2017.
  49. ^ "il manifesto".
  50. ^ "Don Mauro, anima di Comunione e Liberazione, condannato a 4 anni e 7 mesi per pedofilia". Il Corriere del Giorno.
  51. ^ "il manifesto".

External links[edit]