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L’Arche Communities: new movements and communities in the life of the Church

In 1964 Jea Vanier, a Canadian ex-university Professor, decided to live with two men with learning disabilities. His experience was not so much of helping them as being helped by them. From this small beginning near Paris, the L’Arche (the Ark) houses grew up and are now to be found in over 30 countries. Their purpose is to create true communities of compassion through which the incredible power of the gospels and the love of Jesus are revealed to all.


Both before and after the Council, the Church witnessed the flourishing of many new movements and communities. Characterised by a striking vitality and varied fruits, and not unlike the religious orders of past ages, these new ’initiatives’ in today’s Church share a passion to evangelise in a world losing interest and hope in the Gospel. Held up by many as the new hope for the Church and criticised by others, the movements never fail to generate interest. This series aims to promote better knowledge and understanding.