Jean Vanier and l’Arche

(Darton, Longman & Todd)
ISBN: 0-232-52594-3

“Well told and gets deep under the skin of l’Arche.”

Austen Ivereigh

In 1964 Jean Vanier, a Dartmouth-trained  ex-naval officer, and son of a Governor General of Canada, bought a small house in a village north of Paris and invited three men with mental disabilities to share it with him. This was the beginning of l’Arche (The Ark), a community where people often rejected and despised by this world can share in a life of communion based on the recognition that we are all in our different ways ‘disabled’.This book traces the growth of the l’Arche movement and the life and thought of Jean Vanier: his childhood in a privileged Canadian family, his English education, his escape from war-torn France and his historic meeting with the priest who helped him to find his true vocation.

There are now over 125 l’Arche communities scattered across the continents. Their message – that the ostensibly poor and weak are potentially a source of life, hope and peace – has proved to be of exceptional relevance to the Church and the world