Page 6, 17th July 1936

17th July 1936
Page 6
Page 6, 17th July 1936 — LETTERS

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Organisations: Christ in His
Locations: Geneva, Norwich


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of industrialism. For unit characters are not men, and it is men—including catholic men—of whom we speak.


Weeford Cottage, Hill, Sutton Coldfield.

J.O.C. IN ENGLAND Author of "Catholic Action" Articles Replies

SIR,—I would like to reply to some of the criticisms of the articles on Catholic Action.

In general 1 do not want to start a controversy on what the Bishops seem to have decided, but on the method of adapting

Catholic Action to England. I think I stated a view that is certainly tenable. One reason why I did so is that I think that a new society will the better ensure quality first and later quantity, " that quality which is to be preferred to quantity " (Pius XI). But I can quite see that it is considered possible and preferable to work with the older societies as a basis.

I suggested the J.O.C. as the Catholic Working Youth of England, but we are not thereby forced to abandon the C.W.L. and the K.S.C.

J.O.C. is destined for that section of Catholics for whom in England there is no body that attracts them, educates them and cares for them after they have left school. Although Father Quinn is quite right in saying that the J.O.C. does not enter into every milieu, he is wrong in saying that it is founded on class-difference. It is founded on difference of milieu, which is a totally distinct affair.

Again J.O.C. would have to be adapted if it came into England, so that it would lose any foreign air that it may be imagined to possess. Remember that it is not just " this continental movement," but it is one of the most spiritual and spirited movements that the Church has ever produced. It is Catholic and not continental.

Owing to a misprint in the third article I said that the J.O.C. had 180,000 members. It has 80,000 in Belgium.


Sra,—Fr. Quinn's letter in reply to the article on the J.O.C. in the Catholic Herald of June 19 is disheartening.

The J.O.C. is not an organisation— simply, nor can it be described as " this continental movement." Fr. Quinn does not seem to have realised that the spirit and principles of the J.O.C. are the spirit and principles of Catholic Action (cf. the Pope's words). The spirit and the principles have a universal validity. It is, then, not a question of importation but of the adaptation of the principles and methods of the J.O.C. (of Catholic Action) to English life and conditions.

Fr. Quinn's objection to organisation on a class-basis is irrelevant. Such organisa tion is necessary in England. The usual' objection is that it will provoke classtension : the only suitable answer is that we believe that the life of Christ in His members will bind them together, despite classdifference and class interests, in a great common purpose—the establishment of the Kingdom of God on earth.

Perhaps Fr. Quinn can now realise the futility of the sentence: " If we do not import all [J.E.C., J.I.C., etc.], it will be difficult to import one, for they cannot easily be separated." If one imports all these organisations one is merely importing Catholic Action : but " importing " is a silly word.

P. W. SINGLETON, 1.0.C. Propagandist. Blackfriars Schools,

Laxton, Stamford, Lincs.

VATICAN AND THE LEAGUE Should The Pope Be Represented?

SIR,—Mr. Bernard Wall says that Continental Catholicism is opposed to the League, as at present constituted, and regards the contrary English Catholic view (in the main) as an exception to the general European Catholic opinion.

One wonders, however. to what extent this is (a) merely a reaction against local anticlericalism, (b) Cisalpine clerical sympathies.

He adds that the " Vatican view is not in the least coercive."

Obviously not — but as " an important piece of evidence " it most subtly can be coercive unless it is freely admitted that, outside matters of faith or morals, the

Vatican can err. And it is legal to suggest that Italian Nationalism may have its echoes in the present Vatican attitude to the League.

I think it is the greatest of pities the Pope

is not represented on the League. It is true he was excluded from it, by Italy, at its foundation; but all true Cisalpinists will admit that was in the bad old days!

From the moment the Vatican State was created the Pope, like any other Head of an independent State, was entitled to representation at Geneva and it is highly unlikely that Signor Mussolini, who helped to create that independent State, would have objected to the Vatican sending its Delegate to Geneva.

Think, too, of the advantages of such a move—particularly now.

The Papal Nuncio to the League would, in a most peculiarly significant degree, have represented not only the Pope, but also the Catholic views of 350,000,000 Catholics all over the world—and would thus have represented some 221 millions of American Catholics, as well as the German and Mexican Catholics, all three of which are at present unrepresented there!

Further, a Vatican Delegate would mean that Catholicism as such would be a much more active factor in international affairs than it is at present (where it tends more and more to become rather parochial); and would have offset considerably the freedom of influence and action achieved by Russia in the absence of the Vatican State from the League Table.


Haddiscoe Manor, Near Norwich.,

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