This paperback contains two lectures given at Harvard Divinity School in 1988 by the founder of L'Arche ("The Ark") movement, Jean Vanier. Vanier's experiences living and working with men and women with mental disabilities have given him a unique slant on the meaning of community.

He writes about learning to give space to others so they can grow. He acknowledges the importance of mutual support and emphasizes how every member of the community must be willing to accept his or her limitations as well as the imperfections of the group. Charting the movement from brokenness to healing, Vanier sees community as God's sign of transformation to the world outside.