The word “accompaniment,” like the word “companion,” comes from the Latin words cum pane, which mean “with bread.” It implies sharing together, eating together, nourishing each other, walking together. The one who accompanies is like a midwife, helping us to come to life, to live more fully. But the accompanier receives life also, and as people open up to each other, a communion of hearts develops between them. They do not clutch on to each other but give life to another and call each other to greater freedom.
Accompaniment is at the heart of community life…it is the heart of all human growth. We human beings need to walk together, encouraging each other to continue the journey of growth and struggle…to break through the shell of egotism that engulfs us and prevents us from realizing our full humanity.
-Jean Vanier, Becoming Human