Page 5, 8th May 1953

8th May 1953
Page 5
Page 5, 8th May 1953 — CATHOLIC WRITERS EXCHANGE VIEWS By Kees Van beck C ATHOLIC publiciets

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Locations: Cologne, Strasbourg


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from 17 European cotmtries niel in Merano4 Northern Italy, last week, for four days of animated and fruitful discussions.

The great Kursaal ball—all pre19l4 cream and ivor-y tall mirrors and gilt chandeliers — was fittingly decorated with the flags of many nations,

A glorious sun blazed away over the snow-topped Dolomites from a Madonna blue sky. Beautiful Meranc, where the German and Italian

languages meet and mingle. is in

itself a challenge to that European

unity which we had come to djcuss.

As last year in Saarbrficken, the Congress was convened by the Association of Catholic Publicists of G e r m a n y . The Association was founded in 1948 in Cologne to bring all Catholics engaged in newspaper, cinema and broadcasting work together.

Nazi terror

Organiser of the Association.-.--as of these congresses—is a short, robustly built Jesuit. Dr. }{einrich Jansen-Cron. whose round, florid lace with the friendly blue eyes

behind go]d-rimmed spectacles makes

one irresistably think of the eminent Mr. Pickwick. down to short grey side whiskers — and tempera

men t.

Dr. Janseri Croit. now in his Sixties, suffered himself under the Nazi terror. For three long years he worked in civilian disguise for an Alsace publisher, saying Mass secretly. When the Gestapo got the scent of his trail he lived for a year

in a remote farmhouse high in the Black Forest.

International gatherings of this type acne many a practical purpose, the most valuable of which is that people of the same avocation, but from different lands, discuss their problems, exchange experiences and ideas.

Periodical :i4rope and i/re Nations was the theme of the lectures, which gave the discussions every chance to cover a wide field. Germans have the reputatia of being thorough, and these lectures all "introductions to a theme"—set a very high standard, tracing the problems from their earlieat beginnings and surveying them in every aspect. They would well reward a more leisured digestion in print.

Dr. Grosche. the witty and learned Dean of Cologne, advocated an idea of T. S. Elliot's tbr a national periodical—in a Co un try's ow language—bringing contributions by writers and thinkers from other countries. Every nation gains from such intellectual exchange, as was shown by a reference to Cardinal Newman in the sermon at the Congress Mass.

A pledge One of the high-lighLs of the Congress was the report of Dr. Heinrich von Brentano, leader of the Christian . Democrats in the Bonn Parliament and chairman of the Constitutional Committee of the As.scmblee of Europe in Strasbourg. He related how deeply moved he had been by the evident good will of all the delegates of the six nations workirig out the blueprint for a European Community.

This European Community, now under discussion between France, Germany. Italy and the Benelux countries. creates a federation of 150 million people. The Socialists mock it as but a "Little" Europe, but only from a Little Europe can a Greater Europe gradually grow. Dr. Bren' tano pledged Ihat Germany will proceed on that road and will not shirk the sacrifices which it involves.

Visitors front Britain and tire could not but be impressed by the obvious reality of the hopes which now live in Central Europe. Continental delegates were eager that the C.atholics of these islands should take a more active interest in the cause.

A warm letter of good wishes from Cardinal D'Alton. Primate of All Ireland, was applauded with spontaneous enthusiasm when read at the opening Session of the Congress. as was a message of the Association of Catholic Writers of Ireland, repreaented at the Congress.

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