The Passing of Jean Vanier, L’Arche Founder

I just saw the news that Jean Vanier, the founder of the L'Arche communities that give homes and dignity to the intellectually and developmentally disabled, has passed away. I was first introduced to L'Arche in Washington, DC, through a friend who lived and worked in one of the L'Arche houses there as an assistant. It was a beautiful, powerful experience visiting her there, having dinner and spending time with that community. An example of unconditional love and the intrinsic belief in human dignity. It certainly challenged my logical-intellectual sense of value, which is probably more driven by utilitarianism than it should be. Fortunately, my flawed ways are not God's ways.

Jean Vanier responded to God's ways, and we are all the richer for it. May he rest in peace in his Father's embrace.

“When those ingrained in a culture of winning and of individual success really meet them, and enter into friendship with them, something amazing and wonderful happens,” Mr. Vanier said at a news conference when he received the Templeton Prize. “They too are opened up to love and even to God. They are changed at a very deep level. They are transformed and become more fundamentally human.”

Read more in his obituary in the Washington Post

Explore the beautiful work of L'Arche at

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