by Joseph Campbell
THE MILITANT face of Christian youth was on display in Sheffield last week, when the Catholic Association of Young Adults held their Sixth Annual Rally in the city.
Catholics had no choice but to become involved in politics was the massage of Fr Frank Turner, a leading Jesuit from Liverpool, who delivered the day's keynote speech. Addressing a crowd of almost 1400 young people from throughout England and Wales, he claimed: "The Church as such cannot abdicate from involvenient with public issues. "Government isn't like a boxer suddenly attacked by someone outside the ring," he added. "The ring is our lives." If Catholics were to fight for justice and peace for all peoples they had to expect oppostion from those who wielded power he alleged, but they could not shun the responsibilities of breaking down barriers within society. That was the true meaning of reconciliation, not "papering over the cracks. "In our industrial society, the barrier that divide people most deeply are those of wealth and economic power," he said. They were all too evident in Liverpool, where he worked.
"We have to ask ourselves what kind of country we want: One where the workers are so docile that their work can be taken from them without protests, which is what the Government seems to expect of the miners, one in which the purchase of nuclear arms always claim first call on the nations resources'!" he asked.
CAYA's message was not political stressed one speaker, Fr Brian Doyle, the student chaplain at St Mary's College, Strawberry Hill. "Let the message go out from here today that young Catholics will not be silenced, that we will not stand by. Young Catholic adults of this country do not take their morals from any political party. We do not take our attitudes form any multi-media. We follow Jesus Christ." ECUMENISM blossomed in Liverpool last Sunday as Christian Church leaders, including Archbishop Derek Warlock of Liverpool and Dr David Sheppard, Anglican Bishop of Liverpool, held a service to mark the end of the International Garden Festival.
A congregation of over 9,000. attended the ecumenical service' in the Festival Arena, on the windswept Mersey shoreline and prayed silently for one minute for the victims of the Brighton
At the close of the 45-minute service, at which Bishop David Sheppard condemned the bombing, the massed assembly watched as figures from such diverse fields as Everton and Liverpool football clubs, agriculture, commerce and industry joined in a procession through the site as symbols of a "Harvest of Hope". Liverpool City Council is anxiously "separating the wheat from the chaff" of this harvest, as it decides what to do ‘k ith the 250 acre site, which cost £20 million to develop and from which contractors will soon be uprooting thousands of flowers and taking down many of the buildings and stands.
Labour leader of Liverpool City Council, John Hamilton, vocal in the "jobs not trees" campaign has said that the burden of running the site would be too great for the council. The fear in Liverpool is that the section of Garden Festival land which will not be used for housing development (about half) but designated as parkland may return to its previous wild state for lack of money. Catholic MP, David Alton has suggested that the land should be made into a Royal park, which would then be maintained by the Department of the Enviornment. The area, indeed the whole of Toxteth, scene of riots in 1982, was a royal hunting park in the time of King John.