"Cor Mundi" designates a network of friendship that binds together laypersons engaged in studies or secular professions who want to move towards a radical consecration to Jesus Christ in the world and, so to say, from within the world, thereby integrating as best they can their temporal activity with their life of grace.
Heart of the World
We Christians stand in the midst of this world among so many people. Together we share a common existence. The world is for us something different than it is for them. This is because in one way or another—although perhaps not altogether consciously—we have come to know God’s purpose concerning this world. We know, in fact, the very way in which he has pledged himself to it, “for God so loved the world that he sent his only begotten Son to save it” (Jn 3:16). The world, as it is, might not be exactly the kind of house a Christian would have constructed, nevertheless, it is a house that the Christian can call home, precisely because God has built it around the gift of his very own heart—for the Word was made flesh.
God gave in his Son a heart to this world: “the Word was made flesh and made his dwelling in our midst…” (Jn 1:14). Ever since the Incarnation the Christian stance in this world demands a fundamental attitude, that of faith—faith in what God has accomplished through his Son on our behalf, faith in the communion that we have with Him, faith in the fact that God has us here for a personal mission, which is confided only to us, faith in Jesus Christ’s incomparable closeness to every human being. We can also say: the hope that the great burden that God and his Son have shouldered for the destiny of the world will succeed in a victory of love, that, even if we are unable to describe it, calls us already to give the most generous “Yes” and to collaborate by pouring forth our entire existence.
The various situations and occupations lived by a Christian in the world constitute an admirable ensemble. Even if this gathering of diverse elements does not always enjoy a coherency, in the very fact that it exists as such represents God’s loving intention. Even the dissonances that obscure this intention can be perceived as opportunities opened by God’s love and patience. He does not accomplish everything all by himself; he lets things go ahead. Professions and diverse social engagements constitute the field from which Christian existence is called to raise an hymn of love, especially in bringing to manhood, through serving, the love that we have come to know in Christ. Love has need of works in order to subsist and avoid becoming a lie.
The Christian has a good eye for avoiding delusions and a lack of profundity in fathoming the world’s situation. Moreover, only the Christian can form an idea, albeit from afar, of what the evil that exists in the world really means. Only the Word made flesh completely took the measure of evil, tasting to the very dregs the chalice of the Cross. The Christian who remains with Jesus cannot but see himself as threatened by the gaping pits of egoism and hatred that flank him, because he sees close-up, especially in his very own sins, that it is quite possible to say “No” to the God who is love. Precisely because the Heart of the world did not hang-on to heavenly heights protected against human closeness, but rather on the contrary clung to the earth even to the point of being swallowed up by it, the Christian can remain in the world with the peace that comes from Him, a peace this world cannot offer. Thus it is part and parcel of our hope to enjoy the certainty that the Providence of God will always find a way to guarantee, in the midst of the world of unleashed powers, spaces of freedom in which we can bear witness.
According to the Lord’s promise, abundant fruit will not be wanting: fruits of healing the wounds that scar the world, fruits of reconciliation and peace, the fruit of an openness toward heaven of terrestrial zones heretofore closed off, fruits of new service for the suffering, and of a new ordering of multiple energies and forms of generosity. Why should artistic activities, for instance, remain estranged from the Gospel? Without then any pretense of restoring a new Christian order, accepting the world’s autonomy as a gift from the Creator, the mission of the Christian in the world cannot content itself with giving Caesar his due without also giving everything to God, He who gave everything from the very start. Christian fecundity extends to every sector of human life. This is the gift that the Heart of the world makes to Christians.