Proposed new Vatican lay apostolate body

On 27 February 1963, Jean Rodhain, wrote to Mgr Jean Streiff, secretary general of French Catholic Action and now also a member of the Lay Apostolate Commission, informing him of a proposal discussed in the commission for a new Vatican body dealing with the lay apostolate.


Archives Streiff 605

Bishop Araujo Sales endorses Cardijn

On 18 February 1963, Brazilian bishop, Dom Eugenio Araujo Sales, also a member of the Lay Apostolate Commission, wrote to Cardijn approving the draft manuscript of his book, emphasising its timeliness.

Natal, 18/2/63

My dear Monsignor Cardijn.

I received your letter of January 15, 1963, as well as your publication, which I am now reading carefully. I’m very interested. The position is very clear and I fully agree with your points of view. I believe,

Your Excellency, that we are at a moment of the utmost importance in determining the role of the laity in the Church. In the present apostolic situation, the participation of the well-trained layman will succeed in keeping the various de-Christianized or almost de-Christianized circles in the Church, or in bringing them back into it.

In prayer to God to bless your extraordinary work, I send you an affectionate blessing.

Reverend Mgr. Jos. Cardijn

General Chaplain of the YCW

78, Boulevard Poincaré

Brussels 7 7 – CCP 62081


Dom Eugênio de Araújo Sales

Apostolic Administrator


Archives Cardijn 1783

Stefan Gigacz, The Leaven in the Council, Chapter 8, Suenens vs Cardijn, Lay people in the frontlines (Australian Cardijn Institute)

A new title: “Laïcs en premières lignes”

On 14 February 1963, Jean-Pierre Delarge responded to Marguerite Fiévez explaining that it would not be easy to obtain the imprimatur in Paris because the office responsible was overworked.

He also proposed a new title for the book: “Laïcs en premières lignes” or “Lay people in the front lines.”


Archives Cardijn 1778

Trouble to obtain the imprimatur

On 13 February 1963, Marguerite Fiévez wrote to Jean-Pierre Delarge expressing her concern that they had been over-optimistic regarding the grant of imprimatur by the Archdiocese of Malines- Brussels for Cardijn’s book.

Rue Royale Ste Marie,
Brussels 3

Brussels, 13 February, 1963

Mr J.P. Delarge,
Director of Editions Eniversi- taires,
72, boulevard St Germain,
PARIS, Ve France

Dear Mr. Delarge,

I think I’ve been too optimistic about getting the Imprimatur.

Monseigneur Cardijn thinks that it’s better, if it’s not too much trouble for you, to apply for the Imprimatur from the Archbishopric of Paris, and not to deviate from the usual rules, which require the application to be made in the diocese where the work is published.

He therefore relies on your good will, but is convinced that there will be no difficulty.

Many thanks in advance.

Yours faithfully, Mr. Delarge.

Marguerite Fiévez


Archives Cardijn 1778