Fr Hal Ranger, reluctant to retire at 87


Senior Toowoomba priest, Fr Hal Ranger credits Cardijn with his reluctance to retire, ABC News reports.

At St Patrick’s Cathedral, where he is Associate Pastor, Father Hal, 87, leads mass, or “meetings of the team” as he calls it.

“The game is out there in the world,” he said.

“You get the team together to kind of re-align yourself with the spirit of the team, listen to the word of God and talk about it a bit.

“Then you go out the door to live that out in the nitty-gritty of the real world.”

Father Hal puts his reluctance to retire down to a meeting many years ago with Belgian Cardinal Joseph Cardijn, who was 84 when he said to him, “If you’ve got the health and the energy and a bit of adrenaline, then why not?”.

He remembers his mother taking a job at Toowoomba’s Willowburn Mental Asylum to work with “the broken, isolated people the rest of the world didn’t want anything to do with”.

Father Hal says being there for the “battling people looking for meaning in their life” became a theme in his life, but also pitted him against the Catholic Church’s rigid traditions.

“There were times I seriously thought about how I can really live meaningfully and peacefully and with energy in the system, so I rebelled a bit against it,” he says.

“But I was never tempted to throw the whole baby out with the bath water.”

Father Hal believes the biggest barrier between the church and the people it wants to connect with are the churches themselves.

“This will come across as a bit of a heresy, but I think the building that we’re sitting in and other church buildings and the institution that the church has kind of got itself locked into is almost foreign to the gospel,” he said.

“I really don’t think Jesus, if he were here today, would be building churches.

“If there is value in gathering big groups of people, then use the town hall. Once you build something like this, I think it gives a message of being cut off from the rest of the world.”

FULL STORY

Young and old reflect on life as Catholic priests in 2022 (ABC News)

PHOTO

Father Hal Ranger has been a Catholic priest for 64 years.(ABC Southern Queensland: Belinda Sanders)

Invitation: Cardijn Memorial Mass Sunday 24 July

The Cardijn Community Australia and ACI invite all members and friends to join us for a Cardijn Memorial Mass on the 55th anniversary of his death this Sunday 24 July at 7.30pm AEST.

Our celebrant will be former Australian YCW national chaplain, Fr Jim Monaghan, now vicar-general of Port Pirie Diocese and parish priest of Port Augusta.

REGISTER

https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZwpcOioqzMuE9Xq5QESbDNi6YcGdiucoyNj

The Pact of the Catacombs and the Pietralata Message

ACI has launched a new website – pactofthecatacombs.com – that tells the story of the Pact of the Catacombs for a Church of the Poor and its long forgotten counterpart, the Pietralata Message, for a worker Church.

The story began with a proposal by Brazilian Archbishop Helder Camara to hold two Eucharistic celebrations towards the end of the Fourth Session of Vatican II in October or November 1965.

The two masses took place on successive evenings on 16 and 17 November 1965, just prior to the promulgation of the Decree on Lay Apostolate, Apostolicam Actuositatem, on 18 November.

The Mass for a Poor and Servant Church was held first in the Domitilla Catacombs. It was there that the document later to become known as the Pact of the Catacombs was adopted by the bishops present.

The Mass for Workers took place the following evening at Cardijn’s cardinal’s parish church of St Michael Archangel in the working class Rome suburb of Pietralata. There, the gathered bishops adopted a second document, the Pietralata Message.

Much has been written about the Pact of the Catacombs yet little is known of the Pietralata Message.

This website presents them both pairing them again in the way that Helder Camara had originally intended and hoped.

VISIT THE WEBSITE

https://www.pactofthecatacombs.com

An evolving missiology: The Franciscan Missionaries of Mary

Sr Heather Weedon FMM has published her 2017 PhD thesis on “The Evolving Missiology of the Franciscan Missionaries of Mary” on the Academia website.

In her thesis, Heather notes the similarity between the discernment method followed by founder, Hélène de Chappotin, and the jocist see-judge-act method.

“When discerning any situation, Helene studied the issue, then prayed about it, asking advice from her spiritual director or others whose opinions she valued, before making any final decision,” Heather writes. “This method was continued by her Sisters and followed Cardinal Cardijn’s method.”

Indeed, the Franciscan Missionaries of Mary have had a long relationship with the Cardijn movements with Cardijn himself acknowledging his own indebtedness to an earlier superior general of the order.

Heather notes:

Upon the death of the Superior General of the Sisters, Mother St Michel, in 1931, Cardijn wrote that he “…owed a lot to her for the founding of the JOC.” A number of Sisters who had been members of this movement were inspired to join the Institute through their involvement with the YCW. The YCW method of reflection is widely used today at meetings (eg., General Chapters, discernment programs) by the Sisters.

In Australia and Papua New Guinea, FMM sisters “used the (Cardijn) method of see-judge-act in their schools as a system of gospel study in the Young Christian Students Association.”

Heather also notes that “a number of Sisters who had been members of this movement were inspired to join the Institute through their involvement with the YCW.”

And the Franciscan Missionaries of Mary continue to make use of the Cardijn method in the discernment processes of the congregation:

Taking up the invitation of Pope Francis above, the Sisters have chosen to rethink their structures, beginning with the community life of the Sisters. They are doing this through a series of meetings throughout the world. Provincials from one Province have been coordinators of meetings in a Province other than their own. Thus, they have the opportunity to
hear from Sisters of another culture, nation, and context. In this way, the Sisters are continuing their manner of discernment using the See-Judge-Act of the Young Christian Workers [YCW].

READ MORE

Heather Weedon, https://www.academia.edu/83219988/The_Evolving_Missiology_of_the_Franciscan_Missionaries_of_MaryThe Evolving Missiology of the Franciscan Missionaries of Mary (Yarra Theological Union/University of Divinity/Academia)

PHOTO

Franciscan Missionaries of Mary

Plenary misses Francis’ wider vision

Some 278 Catholic bishops, clergy, religious personnel and lay people will meet as members of an unprecedented Plenary Council during 4-9 July to finalise the resolutions of their first assembly last year. However the May working document ‘Framework for Motions’, despite much worthy content, especially on Indigenous affairs, relies on a narrow notion of mission overly focused on inner-church issues at the expense of the wider social engagement that Francis emphasises, writes Fr Bruce Duncan CSsR in Eureka Street.

(It is) puzzling how the Framework for Motions overlooks the specifically secular mission of lay women and men in their daily work, occupations, communities and families. Merely a single paragraph calls for deepening the ‘lay apostolate in the world based on attentiveness to the “signs of the times”, scriptural reflection, prayerful communal discernment and a commitment to engagement with the broader Australian community through listening and dialogue’ (#80). But it does not explain why this secular involvement is so crucially significant, especially for Pope Francis.

‘Francis has explicitly recast this see-judge-act method into the process of synodality and discernment, calling the whole Church to learn this way of listening carefully to others, especially the excluded or marginalised.’

Let me explain. The paragraph refers to the famous see-judge-act process developed by a Belgian priest, Canon Joseph Cardijn, nearly a century ago for use by young working women and men in factories and workplaces. Cardijn formed groups to discuss their life and work issues (‘see’), to reflect together using a Gospel passage for spiritual guidance (‘judge’) and then to take action to change situations (‘act’).

It was a circular process of empowerment for people to take charge of their lives and challenge unjust practices. It became known as the Young Christian Workers Movement and spread internationally, even to Australia, especially in Melbourne and Adelaide. Based on people’s personal experiences, it linked faith cogently with their real life issues, giving them strength and courage to make often difficult decisions but acting always on their own responsibility. This method often empowered people for the rest of their lives and careers.

Francis has explicitly recast this see-judge-act method into the process of synodality and discernment, calling the whole Church to learn this way of listening carefully to others, especially the excluded or marginalised.

Francis urges a ‘cultural revolution’ in the church, to undertake ‘the slow work of changing structures, through participation in public dialogue, where decisions are made that affect the lives of the most vulnerable.’ He said that the social apostolate is to empower people ‘“to promote processes [italics added] and to encourage hope”, to help communities grow, to be aware of their rights, to apply their talents, and create their own futures’. He dreams of a ‘Church that does not stand aloof from life, but immerses herself in today’s problems and needs, bandaging wounds and healing broken hearts with the balm of God.’

His notion of mission is thus not confined to inner-church matters. At the opening of the 2021-1923 Synod on Synodality on 9 October 2021, he said that the Vatican Council understood mission as including ‘apostolic commitment to the world of today’, but warned that this was opposed to ‘proselytism’. In an address to Catechists on 27 September 2013, he insisted: ‘What attracts is our witness… Words come…. But witness comes first: people should see the Gospel, read the Gospel, in our lives.’

FULL ARTICLE

Bruce Duncan, Plenary Council fails to embrace Pope Francis’s wider social vision (Eureka Street)

RIP +Bill Wright: From YCS to bishop of Maitland-Newcastle

Thanks to Teresa Brierley and MN News for allowing us to reproduce Teresa’s remembrance of the late Bishop Bill Wright of Maitland-Newcastle, who died on Cardijn’s birth anniversary, 13 November.

It is difficult to know how to begin this week’s message, with the news of the death of Bishop Bill Wright. Like me, many of you may have been thinking of him and holding him in prayer over the past few months, but nothing prepares you for the finality of someone not being there anymore. I have been struck lately by his empty chair in our Cathedral, and now it is really empty as we await a new Bishop.

I was thinking of him on Saturday as I attended The Cardijn Lecture, hosted by the Australian Cardijn Institute on The Emergence of Synodality: The Latin American Experience, presented by Professor Rafael Luciani, a Venezuelan lay theologian.

You may wonder why Bishop Bill was particularly on my mind. Both Bishop Bill and I, along with other people from across Australia, were part of the Young Christian Students Movement (YCS) of the 1960’s and 1970’s. This is a student run movement which uses the Joseph Cardijn method of “SEE, JUDGE, ACT” which enables students to SEE what is happening in the world around us and analyse facts, to then JUDGE this in light of our beliefs and the Gospel, and to take ACTION to transform not only the world around us but ourselves. YCS still exists and forms part of our diocesan outreach to young people.

Formation as Christian leaders

I was thinking of Bishop Bill and me, and how the YCS was so critical to our formation as Christian leaders, not only then but now and in all of the intervening years. I recall leading small groups in which we would reflect on Gospel passages and then the following week do what was called, the Review of Life. At quite a young age we learnt how to read the scriptures in light of the world around us and to then take action. It challenged us to look beyond ourselves in the light of the teachings of Jesus. Not only would we meet each week at school or in the parish, but we would have holiday YCS camps, where we would gather with young people from across a number of schools. I recall attending a couple of camps at Morpeth before I moved to Sydney. Like Bishop Bill, these experiences were life-changing for me and many others, who continue to lead our church from a ‘synodal’ position. We learnt the method of journeying with each other, of deep listening, of reflecting on encounters in the light of faith and of responding.

You may be interested to know that Bishop Bill died on the birthday of Joseph Cardijn, (13 November 1882 – 24 July 1967). Joseph Cardijn was a Belgian priest who devoted his life to bringing Christianity to the working class and advocating for an end to the dehumanising influences that were enforced onto them. He began the Young Christian Worker Movement (YCW) from which the YCS has its origins. I wonder if this is what led Bishop Bill to explore some of his priestly ministry in places like Moree and Mt Druitt. Like Joseph Cardijn, Bishop Bill saw the priesthood of the ordained as a means of bringing positive change and hope to those he encountered.

The Movement plays a role in seeing the world as it should be, and not as it is. I hope in this phrase you can hear echoes of synodality. Rafael Luciani spoke about synodality and the continual work of renewal and reform that is required in our church. Like the YCS, synodality is a movement of formation and change in which we respectfully journey with each other, from both grassroots and hierarchical organisations.

Council for Mission

During the webinar, on Saturday afternoon, I remembered the change management project introduced by Bishop Bill in 2017, which we call, Many parts, One body, One mission. The thinking behind these core changes sought by Bishop Bill was around having overt structures of participation across our diocese in aiding the curia to serve the diocese better and to work better together. He identified four core areas for change:

Instituting a ‘Council for Mission’ for the whole diocese, which will review our overall direction as Church, establish priorities for the development of our ministries, agencies and services and foster collaborative initiatives between agencies. The Council will meet regularly throughout the year and establish this as a priority.

The Diocesan Executive will be expanded to include Directors of agencies to enhance information sharing and opportunities for joint planning and projects across the curia.

Existing agency Boards and Councils will be charged primarily with exercising governance of the agency directly, through each Director, and providing periodic reports to the Diocesan Executive.

Within the curia, bringing together resources and services that all areas of the curia may benefit from, and which do not need to exist as separate units in each agency. This will enable agency leadership to focus on core business, reduce confusion across agencies and diminish duplication of staff and resources. This will also enable staff in these areas to have opportunities for broader experience.

While a lot of what Bishop Bill imagined has been accomplished, there is still work that needs to be done in achieving his vision for a more collaborative synodal diocese focused on God’s mission in our diocese. He would become very frustrated if the talk was only about structures and not about our core business of being the Good News of God’s love for all of humanity.

Governance principles

The following words come from a document which is ‘under construction’ as part of the work of one of the Synod Working Party’s Focus Group on Governance Principles and Documentation:

By virtue of their baptism, all the faithful enjoy true equality in dignity and action. Hence, all are called to co-operate, according to their particular circumstances and responsibilities, in building up the Body of Christ and in fulfilling the mission that God gave the Church to accomplish in the world. The organic nature of ecclesial communion and the spirituality of communion require the Bishop to evaluate the structures of participation envisaged by canon law. These structures guarantee a dimension of communion in the pastoral governance of the Bishop, insofar as they generate a kind of reciprocal interplay between what a Bishop is called to contribute to the good of the diocese through exercising his personal responsibility, and the contribution made through the collaboration of all the faithful. The Bishop should keep clearly in mind that these structures of participation do not take their inspiration from criteria of parliamentary democracy, because they are consultative rather than deliberative. Fruitful dialogue between a Pastor and his faithful will unite them “a priori in all that is essential, and… [lead] them to pondered agreement in matters open to discussion”. In promoting the participation of the faithful in the life of the Church, the Bishop will recall the rights and duties of governance to which he is personally bound. These include not only witnessing, nurturing and caring for the faith, but also cherishing, defending and proposing it rightly.

The co-ordination and marshalling of all diocesan resources requires opportunities to gather for joint reflection. The Bishop needs to make sure that these encounters are well prepared and not unduly long, that they have clear objectives and achieve tangible results. In this way, with a genuine Christian spirit, the participants establish a good mutual rapport and sincerely seek to collaborate. (N.165 Congregation for Bishops, Directory for The Pastoral Ministry of Bishops, Apostolorum Successores, 2004)

I believe this forms the legacy for our own diocesan synodal journey during Bishop Bill’s time as Bishop of the Diocese of Maitland-Newcastle. We have been striving to create structures with a focus on both our need for spiritual and structural conversion so that God’s mission can be accomplished in this time and place. Pope Francis refers to this as our search for a new institutional model of Church for the third millennium.

Fiat voluntas tua

Bishop Bill’s last words to me in a text on Friday afternoon were, Fiat voluntas tua (Thy will be done) from one of his favourite prayers. I will finish with his other favourite prayer, the prayer of St Ignatius of Loyola, which both of us know from our years in YCS:

Lord Jesus, teach me to be generous, to serve you as you deserve to be served, to give without counting the cost, to fight without counting the wounds, to work without seeking rest, then to spend my life without expecting any other in return, then the knowledge that I do your holy will, Amen.

Eternal rest, grant unto him O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon him. May he rest in peace, may he rest in peace. Amen.

Teresa Brierley
Director Pastoral Ministries
16 November 2021

SOURCE

Teresa Brierley, Fiat voluntas tua (MN News)

READ MORE

Death of Bishop Bill Wright (MN News)

Teresa Brierley

The worker mission

Fr Jim Monaghan, parish priest of Port Augusta parish and vicar-general of Port Pirie Diocese as well as a longtime YCW and YCS chaplain, has kindly shared his intervention at the Australian Plenary Council with us.

Through working life, human beings cooperate with their Creator. Yet the reality for so many workers is a total contradiction of this sacred relationship.

Work should give life, friendship, skills, and spiritual fulfilment, and put food on the family table. But the workplace is becoming the province of idols. Money, competition, exploitation, and shameful indignities. The lowest paid workers saved us during C-19, but their conditions remain shabby and inadequate. The wealth of the few contradicts the common good. Some union leaders have been seduced by greed and ambition.

The organisation of work has become an obstacle to the life of faith. 12 hour shifts, 7 day rosters, FIFO jobs have eliminated weekends and affected the cohesion of families. How many fathers are now visitors among their own children? Where does the Lord’s Day fit? The loneliness and stress of work – a breeding ground for addictions.

Working people need missionary leaders from among themselves, to redeem the world of work. What do priests and bishops know of the workings of work? The answer is – nothing. We need men and women inspired by Mary the young worker and Joseph, who know the smell of the sheep. Workers can rediscover their eternal dignity as the daughters and sons of God.

The Review of Life Method of See, Judge and Act, originally formulated by Cardinal Joseph Cardijn and refined through the lives of countless worker leaders, forms leaders for the mission among the workers and their families.

Archbishop Fisher challenged us to Wake Up! Our Church has been asleep, in regard to the world of work. The devil has crept in under the cover of darkness. We need to form leaders with the heart and mind of Jesus so workers can be the Light of the

World.

Fr Jim Monaghan

PHOTOS

Richard Nyberg, USAID / Pixnio

Whyalla News

A program of Christian democracy

This is the Christian Democratic program presented by Fr Cardijn to the readers of the new daily, Le Démocrate,” wrote Marc Walckiers in his 1981 doctoral thesis on Young Cardijn.

He was referring to the following article published in 1919 just after end of World War I.

In it, Cardijn sets out its aims under three points — doctrine, organisation and program.

We have just finished reading the first edition of Le Démocrate (The Democrat). Every friend of Christian democracy will rejoice that we have our own newspaper at last. In it, we loyally and passionately defend our doctrine, our organisation and our program.

OUR DOCTRINE is based on the notion that democracy is fundamentally a question of education and organisation. As long as the great principles of justice, fraternity, responsibility, competence, discipline and authority fail to penetrate our customs and morals, and fail to inspire our institutions and the exercise of power, democracy will exist only in name.

Auction-style acrobatics will lead to a battle of wills. General well-being needs to take priority over individual interest. Free and cordial cooperation must become the basis of all activity.

Only in this way will we manage to avoid demagogic decline and succeed in promoting “social uplifting.”

For us as Christians, truth is found in the Gospel and the doctrine of the Church. This means making it known and adapting it in increasingly concrete terms to the current economic and social conditions that we aim to achieve.

Our trade union, economic, social and educational ORGANISATIONS are like the apple of our eye.

The Right of Association is the best antidote to statism, bureaucracy, incompetency and political exclusivity. Any kind of attack on the right of association, whether practised by violence or through legal means, amounts to a betrayal of democracy.

Trade union freedom, freedom of opinion, conscience and teaching are the only guarantees of a healthy and life-giving public atmosphere. Without this, we will languish in oppression and slavery.

OUR PROGRAM. In our ruined country, the first thing we are aiming for is “reconstruction.” In line with this, we are prepared to make every possible concession to promote collaboration and unity among all patriots.

Tolerance and confidence are democratic virtues. To intensify reconstruction, it will be necessary for the working masses to become more directly involved in production.

While working for the transformation of our economic and political regime, we urgently desire to correct employee abuse by gaining recognition for the vital rights of employees, including minimum salary, maximum working hours and freedom of association.

The housing issue is as urgent as the need for a labour contract.”

SOURCE

Joseph Cardijn, For Christian workers – Le Démocrate (www.josephcardijn.com)

The doctrinal foundations of the YCW

At the First International Congress of the YCW in 1935, Cardijn delivered his classical “Three truths” talk setting out the “Truth of faith,” the “Truth of reality,” and the “Truth of method” on which the movement was based.

He went further in 1950 at the International Congress held in Brussels, where he delivered a series of in depth talks, including “The doctrinal foundations of the YCW,” which further developed his “three truths” concept, which we present here.

I. A Truth of Faith

The Mission of the Young Workers in the Working Class

1. Each young worker and working girl has an eternal destiny. They are human persons. Not machines, not slaves or beasts of burden; they are the sons, the collaborators, the heirs of God. They are made to the image of God. This personal characteristic is sacred and inviolable; it gives to each young worker a personal dignity: the young worker is an end, an absolute in himself. One cannot respect God if one does not respect the human person.

2. This truth is universal and applies to every race, every people, every country, every age. is the lever, the motor, the stimulus of every civilisation and all human progress.

3. This eternal destiny does not begin after death. It becomes incarnate in time to flower out in eternity. From the very moment of his conception in his mother’s womb, the future young worker finds in this destiny the source of his rights to life, to education, to protection, to health, to justice. Far from being a philosophic justification or an opium, a cause or a pretext for escape, for resignation, it is the foundation of all deproletarisation, the guarantee against all violence, the inspiration of all liberation.

It gives to each young worker a vocation, a personal mission, which transforms his life into a collaboration with God, with all men, for the achievement of the divine plan in the work of creation and redemption, Created by God, redeemed by Christ, the young worker is their necessary collaborator, but freely, wilfully, through love. Not a starveling of the earth, but a responsible citizen of the City of God and of the city of men.

4. This vocation, this mission of the young worker, gives to his work, to his profession, a human and divine value. Work is not a shameful thing, a “come down”, a punishment, but a service, a ministering to his personal fulfilment and that of humanity. Without work there can be nothing: no humanity, no civilisation, no religion. This vocation demands a regime of work which excludes the exploitation and proletarisation, and which guarantees a collaboration in justice and equity.

5. This personal vocation is expressed in the family vocation and mission of each young worker. This vocation is fulfilled in the working class family which ensures the complementary vocation of the spouses and of the parents of the young worker and young working girl, with a view to the procreation and education of children. Without families, there can be no children, no citizens, no priests, no apostles.

6. This personal vocation makes clear the communal vocation and mission of each young worker, which is incarnate in every working class community, professional and local. The young worker is the first and immediate apostle and collaborator of his comrades, his companions, his neighbours. This implies a community of life, of destiny, of mutual aid, of friendship, of brotherhood. The young worker must not be an escapist, but an internal ferment, inseparable from the community in which he lives.

7. This personal vocation makes clear the mission, the vocation of the working class, which comprises all working class families and communities, in which all are united together and feel their responsibility for the transformation of all environments of life and regime of work, bearing the aspirations toward a full emancipation of the working masses of the world.

8. This vocation, this mission of working youth and of the whole working class, is their own irreplaceable vocation which inspires a conception of life, a spirit of life, a manner of life. This conception, this spirit, this manner of life must be acquired, especially between the ages of 14 and 25, between school and marriage, through a properly adapted education.

9. This vocation, this mission is essentially religious, apostolic, and missionary, and gives to each young worker, to each working class family, to all working class communities, to the whole* working class an apostolic responsibility which demands a training, graces, union with God, with Christ, with the Church.

10. The Church spreads throughout the world this essential truth concerning the destiny of each young worker and of the whole working class. By its doctrine and its grace, by its apostolate and its organisation, it enables this truth to become a living reality in the world and in history.

The State, national and international institutions, working class and employers’ organisations and the economic regimes must place this truth at the basis of their achievements, with a view to the progress of national and international communities.

11. This vocation, this mission of the young worker and of the working class will decide the future of humanity and of the Church.

II. A Truth of Experience:

A Flagrant Contradiction,

N.B. – This point of the lesson must be presented in a much more concrete form than point 1; in particular, it will be necessary to recall in all that follows, some of the facts and problems noted in the preceding lesson; “The Situation of Working Youth in the World”, in order to give a factual basis to the remarks that follow.

The various enquiries made at the occasion of the International Conference show once again the flagrant contradiction in 19$0 which exists between the plan of God and the tragic situation of the young workers and of the working class in the world.

These enquiries show:

– the ignorance of the young workers concerning their eternal destiny and their temporal mission.

– the contradiction between this mission and their conditions of housing, work, and life.

– the lack of preparation of the young workers before their entry in work.

– the abandonment in which all young workers find themselves on entering work, when they are lonely, isolated, far from their family and their teachers.

– the disastrous influence of this ignorance, this opposition and this isolation.

– the powerlessness of the young worker in the face of the system which rules the economic life and even the thought of the modem world: capitalism, “liberal economics”.

– the disastrous consequences for the young workers, for working class families, for the working class, for humanity for the Church; proletarisation, general indifference, despair, revolt, war.

– the irresistible influence of the great idealogical talents which are at present moving the masses; materialism, naturalism, existentialism, nationalism, communism, etc.

On the other hand, those enquiries have also shown something of the great living riches of working youth today in many countries: generosity, thirst for liberty, for justice, sincerity, sense of international brotherhood, etc.

These positive characteristics need further careful study, and will serve as starting points for the building of the true solution to the problem: the YCW.

III. A Truth of Method:

An Internal Solution

1. The achievement of the personal, communal, and family destiny of each young worker is conditioned by a number of efforts which must be made by the young workers themselves, so that they may train themselves, unite themselves, and support themselves in order to discover and to achieve together their own proper personal and collective mission in the uplifting and deproletarisation of the working class of the world. This personal and collective effort is especially necessary from 14-25 years, from school to marriage; before that time it is impossible; afterwards it is too late. It must coincide with the age at which human beings become persons.

2. This effort of the young workers in the discovery and achievement of their mission and the development of their personality, instead of being directed toward an individual trend, must be done from the inside, for the transformation of the environments of life, by those who belong to those environments of life, efforts of the young workers, to establish justice and charity in their environment of life; efforts to animate and develop the workers movement; efforts to create a human and Christian atmosphere in these environments of life, and thus make them more suited to their providential destiny.

3. This effort of working youth for its personal education and the transformation of the environments of life, demands and creates the reforms in social, economic, political, and cultural institutions; it is the condition and the guarantee of the success of those reforms. The latter are most urgent and necessary in a society which needs to learn how to respect the dignity of human personality in each young worker, without distinction of class, nationality, religion or race, and which has to seek to create a real and efficacious collaboration within the world of work, on the national and international plane.

These “external” reforms will be all the more efficacious if they are based at the same time on the efforts at self-education of the young workers themselves, who are trying to assume their own responsibilities toward their environment. Without that realisation by youth and the working class of their dignity and responsibility, all external reforms will be insufficient to solve the working class problems.

b. The YCW aims at achieving this organised effort of the young workers themselves who “between themselves, by themselves, and for themselves” are trained and exercised with a view to a permanent apostolate in the working class movement and in view of the uplifting of the working class which will remove proletarian conditions from the world.

5. The Church must inspire, guide and sustain the organised effort of the young workers, which must teach them and help them to achieve not only their personal vocation, but also their apostolate within the working class and the working class movement, for the total rechristianisation of their life, their environment of life, and their institutions of life.

The State, public institutions, and private organisations must support the organised effort of the young workers and assist an effective collaboration for the training and protection of working youth.

READ MORE

Joseph Cardijn, The doctrinal foundations of the YCW and its essential characteristics

Joseph Cardijn, The three truths