Cardijn seeks support from Mgr Emiliano Guano

On 9 August 1961, Cardijn wrote to Mgr Emiliano Guano, a former chaplain to the International Movement of Catholic Students, at the national secretariat of the Italian Catholic Action movement seeking his support to set up a small team to work on some new proposals for the Prep Com on Lay Apostolate.

He is clearly concerned that his efforts are not cutting through.

He wrote:

May I disturb you by communicating my concerns to you?” Cardijn began. “I had the impression that you also shared these concerns during the last session of our Conciliar Commission. And since we had so little time to exchange our impressions, please forgive me for disturbing you by sending you these few notes.

You will therefore find attached:

1 – A copy of the letter that I have just sent to Monsignor Glorieux regarding proposals 51 and 52 and on the subject of my desire to insist on the importance of the apostolate of lay people in the problems specific to lay life;

23 – Under separate cover, the three notes that I had prepared previously and sent to Monsignor Glorieux concerning the program of our Commission; I don’t know which of these notes you received.

As I have written to Monsignor Glorieux, until the end of November I will be entirely occupied with the International Council of the YCW in Rio de Janeiro and its preparation. But after that date I will be freer and will be able to make the time needed to work with a small team on the finalisation of some proposals concerning the apostolate of the laity, which seem to me essential at the present time.

I apologise for writing to you so simply. Do not see any pretension in it but simply a need for frankness and trust and a desire to serve the Church as best as I can. Time is advancing, the Council is approaching and I would blame myself for not having fulfilled the mandate that the Holy See deigned to entrust to me if I did not try to express all my thoughts, submitting them very humbly to the decisions of the Holy See. Authority.

We may have the opportunity to discuss all of this again at the next session. It is from there that I will leave for Rio…



Joseph Cardijn – Emiliano Guano 09 08 1961 (Joseph Cardijn Digital Library)


Joseph Cardijn – Emiliano Guano 09 08 1961 (Joseph Cardijn Digital Library)