The search for such a network to ensure the continuity of the leaders who have been in the different Cardijn movements has been going on in different countries particularly in Asia from early 1990s. Former leaders from YCW and YCS have been meeting independently and also as a group together with former leaders from IMCS to seek a way of continuing their commitment towards social transformation. This gave birth to many forums at various levels.
For the former YCW leaders, the History Project initiated in l997 by the IYCW in connection with the 75th year celebrations in 2000 was a great opportunity to come together and to share their preoccupations. In a way, the assembly of thousands of former YCWrs in Belgium gave an impetus to think of continuing the spirit of Cardijn in some form or the other and to contribute towards development and social change.
Networking for Development Conference 2001
After the end of the YCW History Project, Stefan Gigacz, former IYCW Treasurer began to work for CCFD France, a Catholic development organisation, as a project officer for several countries in South East Asia: China, Vietnam, Thailand and Burma. In this capacity, he met CCFD partners and many others involved in development work including a number who had a background in various Catholic lay movements such as the YCW, YCS, IMCS, ICMICA, etc.
During the FABC Second Asian Lay Meeting in Bangkok Stefan met Rungrote Tangsurakit, collaborator for Thai YCW and also treasurer of the Thai Catholic Commission for Justice and Peace and Rungtip Jim Imrungruang, former IYCS Asia team member and coordinator of the Thai CCJP.
Thus, in discussions with Rungrote Tangsurakit and Rungtip Imrungruang, a small Networking for Development conference was organised with assistance from CCFD at Siam Park Hotel, Bangkok from 21-23 July 2001 with a dozen participants from Thailand, Philippines, Burma, Vietnam, Singapore, and Australia.
Present at the meeting were Juanito Penequito and Boy Pascual from Cardijn Center for Development, Philippines, Nguyen Tri Dung, YCS collaborator from Ho Chi Minh City, Nguyen Anh Dung, director of Ket Doan, a member of the Solidarity and Development group, Rungrote Tangsurakit, Jim, Gregory Mahn Htun, a Burmese former IMCS member from the Karen Youth Leadership and Management Training Program (KYLMTP) and his colleague, William Aung Win Shwe, and S. Samydorai from Singapore.
Creation of the Cardijn Liaison Committee
The outcome of the Networking for Development conference was that it was decided to launch a network to continue working together on development issues.
Initially Cardijn Liaison Committee was chosen as the name for this network: Cardijn to reflect his spirituality and the methodology (see, judge, act), Liaison because we saw our objective as linking people up, and Committee because we were wary of creating a new structure too quickly.
Rungrote Tangsurakit of Thailand was nominated as CLC coordinator and took on the title of President for communication with other organisations.
A number of mid-term objectives were also fixed:
A follow up meeting on 6-7 October 2001 held in Siam Park Hotel, Bangkok adopted a plan of action including the following priorities:
Vatican II + 40 2002
As its first major event, the CLC organised a conference in Bangkok, Thailand to commemorate the 40th anniversary of Vatican II.
Sixty people from 13 countries attended the 11-13 conference on the theme "Vatican II in the age of globalisation".
Cardijn Lay Community
The meeting held at Bangkok gave another impetus for the CLC to come together to discuss the question of expanding the network. It was at this meeting, it was decided to change the name from Cardijn Liaison Committee to Cardijn Lay Community.
CLC members also assisted in the organisation and hosting of two training sessions in 2002 and 2003 on fundraising held in conjunction with the Catholic Commission for Justice and Peace of Thailand and CCFD France.
Young People for Development
CLC also took the lead in hosting and organising the Young People for Development Exchange and Training Program from 5 - 25 August 2003 in Bangkok and Chiang Mai.
Once again this program was organised in conjunction with CCFD France which had requested to organise a program for members of a local MIJARC team based in northern France.
Working with other CCFD partners in South East Asia, a program was organised for over 60 young people.
In turn, this led to the formation of a network of young people also known as Young People for Development.
Young People for Development 2003- As an offshoot of the quest for developing a network of young people towards development activities, it was decided to float an outfit called Young People for Development at a meeting in Chiangmai in 2003. This network is an independent and autonomous movement for young people.
This network also uses the See - Judge - Act methodology and is open to young people of all faiths.
CLC also assisted in the organisation of the second YPD program held in Chiang Mai, Thailand and Hanoi, Vietnam in August 2004.
From 2005, YPD operated as an autonomous network of young people working for development.
In 2005, CLC launched a new program New Pentecost which was planned as an ongoing follow up to the Vatican 2 + 40 program.
Chico Whitaker, co-founder of the World Social Forum, and a former member of the University YCS in Brazil, was invited to make a tour of South East Asia and the Pacific to launch the New Pentecost program.
This successful event led to the organisation of successive New Pentecost programs in following years on a greater or smaller scale.
Evaluation Meeting 2006
The International Coordination of CLC met in Malaysia on 13 August 2006 to mark five years of its development. A critical analysis of the socio, economic, political and cultural reality at the international level was done by the team who came prepared with relevant data and case studies.
The study done by those present reiterated the firm conviction in Cardijn’s vision and methods. In order to be effective in our work, it could be concluded that we have Cardijn as our point of reference in our quest for holistic development.
Conclusions and indicators
Based on this study and conclusion, the vision and mission of the network were redefined at this meeting:
CLC becomes CCI
In order to effectively implement the decisions and to be relevant to the vision of the network, the name of the network was changed from CLC to CARDIJN COMMUNITY INTERNATIONAL (CCI). A new International Coordination Team was also decided upon at this meeting. M. J. Ruben from India – International Convenor; Stefan Gigacz (Australia) and Greg Lopez (Malaysia) - International Coordinators. V. Susairaj and Dr. Bernard d’ Sami from India – Resource Persons.
-Building Teams in countries
-External relations – Newsletter to act as link with others and whenever need arises
-Centres: To develop a research towards launching a Cardijn Centre by 2007
-2007 events: To limit our activity only to 40th death anniversary of Cardijn with a thrust to get due recognition to Cardijn from Church (Doctor of the Church) and from society; to interpret Cardijn and to promote his work by way of publications, translations and research.
The network is open to all who subscribe to Cardijn’s ideas and to all those who had grown through Cardijn’s techniques of See, Judge and Act. (From YCS, YCW, IMCS, MIJARC and other Cardijn initiated movements and organizations).
Decisions to have the International Secretariate in India in a rented place and to function till such time in the office of Jeeva Jyothi (susairaj), Chennai, to bring out publications on Cardijn, to start a Cardijn Research Centre, to orgnaise an International Symposium in India in 2007, to work out a project for CCI and Cardijn Rearch Centre, etc. were taken at this historic meeting.
International Coordination Meeting – 2006 and International Year of Cardijn 2007
The International Coordination met again in Chennai, India on the 9th and 10th December 2006 to plan for the implementation of the decisions already taken in 2006.
The main outcome of this meeting is the declaration of the year 2007 as the ‘International Year of Cardijn’ (IYC) since 2007 happened to be the 40th death anniversary of Cardijn; 40th anniversary of Rerum Novarum and 125th birth anniversary of Cardijn. Various events were suggested to be organised by the national teams during the year.
Some of the salient features of the proposal: 1. to present Cardijn awards to Cardijn movement leaders for outstanding contribution in specific fields; 2. to launch a campaign to declare Cardijn as ‘Doctor of Church’’ 3. to organise an international Symposium and Conference of CCI in November in Chennai, India.
IYC – 2007 – Events in July to observe the 40th death anniversary of Cardijn were organised in different parts of India by CCI teams on the 24th July 2007. The International Coordination of CCI organised a memorial service in collaboration with the local CCI team in Assumption Church, Petaling Jaya, Selangor, Malaysia in which many former leaders of Cardijn movements participated with families. The Bishops of the dioceses and parish priests extended their support and participated in the events.
Newsletter: The first printed edition of ‘Cardijn Info’ was published in July 2007 to commemorate the 40th death anniversary of Cardijn.
Likewise, the 125th birth anniversary was also celebrated with grandeur by different CCI teams. The International Symposium planned to beorganised during this time could not however be held but was postponed to February 2008.
2008 – Year of Expansion of CCI
International Symposium in India
An international symposium on ‘Sustainable Development through Education, Dignity and Harmony’ followed by the CCI Study Session was organised in Chennai, India from the 23rd to 25th February 2008. The Archbishop of Chennai (Madras-Mylapore) and Bishop of Jamshedpur, North East India participated.
Cardijn Resource Centre: was launched during this Symposium with the first publication titled ‘Lay Apostolate – the Urgent Need’.
The Study Session helped the participants to understand the need to strengthen the network to work towards restoring human dignity and sustainable development.
The First General Assembly of CCI elected its first International Coordination as follows:
M. J. Ruben (India): International Convenor; Stefan Gigacz (Australia) and Joseph Baptiste (India) – International Coordinators; Fr. Servatius (India) and Dr. Bernard d’Sami (India) – Collaborators.
35 Delegates from Australia, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Thailand/Japan and India attended this General Assembly.
CCI – Australia launched
Another main event in this year is the launch of CCI in Australia. The International Convenor M. J. Ruben worked along with Stefan Gigacz for 3 months in Australia. A Conference on ‘My Community’ was organised on the 24th and 25th July 2008 at Melbourne. Kevin Vaughan, a former YCW of the 50s along with Tony Whelan worked tirelessly to prepare for this event along with the International Coordinators.
Melbourne Bishop Tim Costelloe, SDB addressed the conference along with the Auxilary Bishop Hilton Deakin . Former and current leaders and chaplains from movements including the YCS, YCW joined with World Youth Day pilgrims from Australia, Asia and Europe for the conference on building communities
The conference was followed by a Public Forum on "International Community Development and Networking" on July 26 at Australian Catholic University's Melbourne campus.
The Cardijn Community International – Australia was officially launched at the conference with Paul Rijken (Adelaide), Kevin Vaughan (Melbourne), John Bonnice (Bendigo), Mark Ager (Adelaide) and David Maloney (Melbourne) elected as the CCI Coordination Team for Australia.
Green World Youth Day- July, Australia
A two week programme (including WYD in Sydney) mainly for young people, most of them from YPD was organised in Melbourne and Sydney by YPD and Stefan Gigacz, CCI International Coordinator. CCI was one of the co-sponsors of the event. CCI delegates from India also attended the GWYD.
CCI International Coordination Meetings – July, 2008 in Australia and August 2008 in Malaysia
Stefan Gigacz and M. J. Ruben met to review the work so far done and to plan for the future. The main topic of discussion in these meetings was the need to extend CCI in South East Asia and to organise a meeting in Malaysia to launch CCI by 2009.
2009 – CCI launched in SE Asia
M. J. Ruben joined Stefan Gigacz in Malaysia and worked for a week in May 2009 to contact former YCWrs, to meet the local CCI team, the Archbishop of Kuala Lumpur and to finalise the venue for the CCI-SE Asia Meet scheduled for the 8th and 9th August 2009.
The SE Asia Meet was an unexpected success for CCI. Delegates from Australia, India and Sri Lanka too joined the meet though we called it SE Asia Meet making it the event of the Asia-Pacific Region. Delegates from Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand attended the event which started with a Symposium on ‘Peace Edcuation for Sustainable Development’ followed by a study on ‘My Community’.
At the first General Assembly of CCI-Asia/Pacific Region, plans were made to prioritize extension to Burma, Indonesia, Vietnam, Hong Kong and the Philippines. The following were elected to the first CCI Asia-Pacific Coordination Team:
Paul Sinnappan (Malaysia); Rungrote Surakit (Thailand); Francis Mane (Singapore); Ms Glynis Joseph (India); Ms Paulina James (Malaysia).
Ruki Fernando (Sri Lanka) and Ms Rebecca Sinnappan (Malaysia) were inducted as the International Coordinators and Charles Santiago, M.P. (Malaysia) as the Resource Person to the CCI International Coordination.
Campaigns / Media Releases
CCI participates in campaigns launched by the IYCS, IYCW, WMCW and CFM.
CCI also comes out with Media Releases on matters of importance in the Church and in the life of the people.
During the war in Sri Lanka, CCI took a firm stand against war and killings of the Tamils and wrote to the President of Sri Lanka to stop the war; wrote also to the United Nations to intervene.
New Pentecost Forum: is a partnership and meeting place for many church and faith based community groups and individuals involved in peace, justice, welfare, development and ecology. CCI is one of the co-founders of this forum. Every year various programmes are organised by CCI groups in different countries.
New Pentecost is a program launched in 2005 by the Cardijn Community International with a few partners to promote the dream of Pope John XXIII that Vatican II should open the way to a New Pentecost in the Church.
"O Holy Spirit, renew your wonders in this our day, as by a new Pentecost," was the prayer for the Council proposed by Pope John.
New Pentecost was conceived as a follow up to the successful CCI conference on Vatican II in the era of Globalisation held in Bangkok to mark the 40th anniversary of the opening of Vatican II in 1962.
Beginning from 2005 with the New Pentecost Forums in Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne with the active participation of Chico Whitaker, co-founder of World Social Forum, the New Pentecost programme was observed each year in a few countries.
An exclusive website was developed for this special programme. For more details log on to: www.newpentecost.com
Details of events held could be seen under ‘Past Events’ (CCI Events) in www.cardijn.info website or in www.newpentecost.com
People for Harmony Network
CCI-India mooted the idea of social harmony and the need for a forum to promote this during attack on Christians by Hindu fanatics in India in 2008 and a secular non-political forum called ‘People for Harmony’ was formed through the active involvement of CCI.
2010: Year of Consolidation
Year for Priests – Cardijn Project: June 2009 – June 2010 was declared as the Year for Priests by Pope Benedict. CCI wanted to promote Cardijn in this Year for Priests by organising various events and publishing the works of Cardijn in order to sensitize priests on the need for their active participation in development and integral human development work.
2 meetings, one at the national level in India and one at the Asia-Pacific level were planned with the title ‘Priests 4 Change’. Due to stiff opposition from the Archbishop of Kuala Lumpur, all the preparations done for the ‘Priests 4 Change and Transformation’ meeting at Kuala Lumpur had to be cancelled at the last minute.
However, the one day ‘Priests 4 Change’ Meet in Nagercoil, India in May 2010 was successfully organised by the CCI-India in close coordination with the CCI International Coordination. Paul Sinnappan, CCI Asia-Pacific Coordinator attended this Meet along with M. J. Ruben, the International Convenor and Fr. Servatius, CCI International Collaborator. 28 Animators and lay leaders participated in this Meet.
CCI International Coordination Meet
In May (29 and 30) 2010, the International Coordination met in Kuala Lumpur for a review of the work done so far and to plan for the future.
Theresa (Philippines)from IYCW Asia-Pacific and My Chi Tran, a former YPD leader and now being initiated into CCI also participated in the Coordination meeting.
Important decisions of this meeting:
Specific identity of CCI as a resource team with a Christian identity with the spirituality of Cardijn based on See Judge Act.
To continue with the theme of ‘Peace education towards sustainable development’ till the next General Assembly
To launch a 3 years project from 2012 to 2015 commemorating the 50th anniversary of Vatican II with the following objectives:
i) to review the spirit, teachings and decisions of Vatican II
ii) to evaluate the support of the church to social action groups and organisations
iii) to ask for increased lay participation
iv) demand social commitment of the church
v) compile testimonies of lay leaders who lived the spirit of Vatican II
vi) Organise an international forum comprising international and national lay organisations, religious congregations and societies
Launching Conference in 2012
Campaigns, websites, publications, conferences, seminars at the local, national, regional and international levels
2015: Final conference in 2015
CCI General Assembly 2011
to be organised on 23-24 July 2011
A minimum structure and organisational matters will be discussed at this GAorated
Organise Training programmes on ROL/SEE JUDGE ACT
Popularise works of Cardijn
Compile testimonies of Cardijn movement martyrs/leaders in audio/video/print formats.
To register CCI as a company in Malaysia/Philippines wherever possible
Centenary of YCW in 2012: Plans will be elaborated soon
New Pentecost 2011: ‘Peace Education towards Sustainable Development’ will be theme for the celebration of New Pentecost 2011
In August 2010, Stefan Gigacz and M. J. Ruben visited the Philippines to launch CCI there. Kins Aparece, former IYCS-Asia and Juanito Penequito, former IYCW International President did the preparatory work for the launch. 28 former and current leaders from YCW, CSA(YCS) attended the two day meeting to launch and to plan for the future. CCI is active now in 2 regions (Metro Manila and Bohol.
Rev. Batara, a Lutheran Pastor and YPD member from Indonesia also accompanied the CCI team to the Philippines to see for himself how the process of See Judge Act application.
Following his personal encounter with the CCI team in the Philippines, in October 2010, Pastor Batara Sihombing launched CCI in Medan, North Sumatra with a team of 3 other Lutheran pastors who are interested to apply the See Judge Act in their parish ministry.
This is the first CCI group at the international level comprising exclusively of pastors of Lutheran denomination.
Stefan Gigacz, International Coordinator worked in Indonesia along with this team in October 2010 and personally briefed them on See Judge Act.
This is a clear indication that the See Judge Act method has a universal appeal.
This historic development is also a testimony to the tireless efforts of the CCI to promote Cardijn’s spirituality, vision and methodology.
Ms My Chi Tran who attended the CCI International Coordination meeting in May 2010 has assured that she will soon form a CCI group in Vietnam.
In January 2011 a team comprising M. J. Ruben, International Convenor, Fr. Servatius, International Collaborator, Ms Glynis Joseph, Asia-Pacific Coordinator and Ms Kins Aparece, National Coordinator of CCI-Philippines visited Sri Lanka to work along with Ruki Fernando, CCI International Coordinator to strengthen contacts and to study the situation of the country, possibility for extension, etc.
CARDIJN MEDIA/WEBSITE IN 2010 and 2011
CCI as a resource team is constantly updating its skills to give to the world Cardijn’s thoughts, works, writings, speeches, his vision and method.
Despite the fact that CCI is not funded by any external agency, it has so far brought out the following publications:
1. Brochure on CCI in 2007 on the occasion of the 40th death anniversary of Cardijn
2. ‘Lay Apostolate – the Urgent Need’ by Cardijn – in 2008 – released by Archbishop of Madras-Mylapore
3. ‘Priests and the Laity in the Church’s Mission’ – speech by Cardijn in 1951 – published on the occasion of the Year for Priests in May 2010 – released by the Vicar General, Kottar Diocese, Tamil Nadu, India
4.’Christian Workers in Action’ written by Fr. Thomas Joseph, YCW/CWM Chaplain since 1950 – released by the Auxiliary Bishop of Madras-Mylapore in October 2010
5. Training Module on See Judge Act – the first of its kind training module at the international level. Released during this GA 2011 in Bangkok in July 2011
We hope to register a Media Company under the name ‘Cardijn Media’
www.cardijn.info is now in French too (www.cardijn.fr). The website is being updated on a regular basis.
www.josephcardijn.com is a site for all resources of Cardijn’s works.
All efforts are made to translate more documents.
CCI is in urgent need of volunteers who can do translation and editing the website from time to time.
www.newpentecost.com is another website giving details of the efforts of CCI
Benchmark achievements by National Groups of CCI
Conference on ‘Rediscovering Joseph Cardijn for the New Millennium’
A Conference on the theme 'Rediscovering Joseph Cardijn for the New Millennium' was organised by CCI-Australia at Cardijn College, Adelaide from the 9th to 11th October 2009.
There were a little over 60 delegates comprising YCS and YCW leaders, former YCSrs and YCWrs and staff members and students of Cardijn College.
Stefan Gigacz represented the International Coordination of CCI.
A one day See-Judge-Act workshop was held in Adelaide on Saturday 26 June 2010.
First General Assembly
CCI-India held its first General Assembly in May 2010 in Nagercoil, South India. A National Team with a one year mandate was elected at this General Assembly in which around 30 leaders from different chapters attended.
Youth 4 Change – Youth Conference
A national conference on the theme ‘India Today: The Youth, Church and Social Commitment’ was organised as part of the Year of the Youth celebration.
68 young people including 7 priest animators attended the national conference which was held from 6th to 8th January 2011 at Goa, India.
‘Goa Declaration’ calling for increased role for young people in all structures of the Church was issued at the end of the conference.
TOT ON ROL
A Training of Trainers on Review of Life was held in two stages in December 2010 for 2 days in Salem and in Madurai for 2 days in March 2011.
At the end of the TOT, they came up with inputs for a Module on See Judge Act.
The International Convenor M. J. Ruben was the trainer of this TOT.
Just a couple of months after the launch of CCI in the country, CCI Philippines launched an inquiry into the impact of Joseph Cardijn and of the See-Judge-Act method on the lives of people.
An online inquiry form has been posted enabling people to share their own experience of the use of the see-judge-act in their own lives and communities.
The objective of the survey is to discover how people who have experienced the Cardijn movements have applied its methodology in their lives subsequently.
The CCI Chapters in the two regions of Metro Manila and Bohol are meeting regularly everything and doing the review of life in their meetings.
Extension in Europe, North and South America and Africa
In order to be true to its character, CCI wants to strengthen its network in places where there are direct members and also to launch CCI in Europe, North and South America and Africa.
CCI does not want to replicate any other Cardijn movement but offers a possibility for those who have been in the Cardijn movements at one point in their lives and who wish to live the same spirit even now. The strengthening of CCI will automatically refresh existing movements particularly of the young people as the accumulation of experiences manifest in CCI will give hope and act as a ‘catalyst’ to commit their lives to build a more just and green world.
50 years of Mater et Magistra
This year marks the 50th anniversary of Pope John XXIII’s encyclical Mater et Magistra, which in its turn recalled the 70th anniversary of Pope Leo XIII’s groundbreaking social encyclical Rerum Novarum on the condition of the workers.
Few today, however, will remember that it was Joseph Cardijn who proposed the writing of this encyclical to Pope John during an audience he had with the Pope in March 1960. At the pope’s request, Cardijn prepared a twenty page dossier of ideas and suggestions for the envisaged encyclical.
Fourteen months later on 15 May 1961, even Cardijn was surprised when Pope John published Mater et Magistra which specifically adopted the famous See – Judge – Act method that he had championed throughout his life.
“There are three stages which should normally be followed in the reduction of social principles into practice,” Pope John wrote (Paragraph 236) in the encyclical.
“First, one reviews the concrete situation; secondly, one forms a judgement on it in the light of these same principles; thirdly, one decides what in the circumstances can and should be done to implement these principles. These are the three stages that are usually expressed in the three terms: look, judge, act.”
Acting upon Cardijn’s inspiration, Pope John thus specifically incorporated the “See – Judge – Act” method into Catholic social teaching and practice.
We are happy to note that the international media gave a good coverage to the statement of CCI on ‘SEE JUDGE ACT-50 years of Catholic social practice’.
Call to declare Cardijn ‘Doctor of the Church’
In the 50th year of the Church incorporating the SEE JUDGE ACT method in its social teachings, CCI celebrates 10 years of its endeavour to promote Cardijn’s vision, spirituality and methodology.
On this occasion, we call upon those who have been trained under Cardijn movements to join us in our efforts to stake the claim before the Church to declare CARDIJN as a Doctor of the Church.
Cardijn indeed saw himself as a teacher and educator of young workers. Fifty years after Mater et Magistra, we can see clearly today that he was also a great teacher of the whole Church.
As we celebrate the half century of the “See – Judge – Act encyclical”, we renew the call made in 1998 by former leaders of the International YCW for Cardijn to be recognised as a “Doctor of the Church”.