Reflections on Proposals 50 and 51

These are the very concrete reflections on the life that Cardijn sent to Mgr Emiliano Guano regarding Proposals 50 and 51 from the Preparatory Commission on Lay Apostolate.

REFLECTIONS ON PROPOSALS 50 AND 51

De actione sociali familiali – De apostolatu a familia exercendo

The two texts need to be compared so that they complement each other and meet current needs:

       1. Many young people are prevented from founding a Christian home because of unemployment, lack of family housing, and thus live in an irregular marital life: it is the same for many newlyweds who, for lack of work or family home encounter insurmountable or almost insurmountable difficulties in having a truly Christian married life. The more privileged Christian families have a duty to promote testimonies of community mutual aid and the social institutions indispensable to a truly human and Christian social-family order.

       2. Heads of families – husbands and parents – who hire domestic workers (maids) for their families, have a grave obligation – especially in the case of minors – to take the necessary measures to safeguard their health, their moral welfare and their future and to monitor the conditions that could compromise them: comfortable and safe bedroom, organised work and salary. In some continents, statistics show that prostitutes are ex-servants, who have been poorly housed, badly treated and abandoned. Young domestic workers need protection and above all training appropriate to their profession and their life: protection and training which should be provided through belonging to the JOCF (Girls YCW), either one of its branches or services (1).

(1) This second proposition could be included in the chapter on women (De actione sociali in specie – Pr. 54)

SOURCE

FRENCH ORIG

Joseph Cardijn, Refléxions à propos des Propositions 50 et 51 (Joseph Cardijn Digital Library

ENGLISH TRANSLATION

Joseph Cardijn, Reflections on Proposals 50 and 51 (Joseph Cardijn Digital Library)

The plight of young domestic workers

On 7 July 1961, Cardijn made an intervention at the PCLA meeting on the plight of domestic workers.

A report based on statistical studies Italian and foreign women was then drawn up by Ferdinando Prosperini who highlighted the moral dangers of domestic work for young girls, including the high number of single mothers in their midst and the corresponding risk of falling into the hands of pimps.

Critical of the evolution of morals, Prosperini viewed the young girl not only a victim, but also a potential “seductress” of the honest father of a Catholic family.

The resulting very conservative text was revised by Santo Quadri, assisted by Fr Erminio Crippa, Dehonian, his closest collaborator at ACLI (Associazoni Cristiani Lavoratori Italiani) and an expert on female domestic work. The emphasis was no longer placed primarily on the moral dangers inherent in their professional activity, but on the need for it to be carried out in accordance with the principles of social justice – fair salary compensation, social contributions, access to training etc. – and on the particular responsibility that Christian families have in this regard.

SOURCE

Agnès Desmazières, Généalogie d’un « silence » conciliaire, Archives de sciences sociales des religions

REFERENCE

Associazoni Cristiani Lavoratori Italiani

https://www.academia.edu/48542618/G%C3%A9n%C3%A9ealogy_d_un_silence_conciliaire

Généalogie d’un « silence » conciliaire

Agnès Desmazières
Archives de sciences sociales des religions

PHOTO

National Museum of American History (Smithsonian)