1957: Pius XII: YCW World Assembly

HH Pius XII – World Assembly of the YCW

Rome, 25 August 1957

“Your solid organisation, your method summarised by the well known formula: “See, judge, act”, your interventions at local, regional, national and international level, place you in a position to contribute to the Reign of God in modern society and to make penetrate the teachings of Christianity with all their vigour and originality. We would like to emphasise several aspects of this action, by referring to the very name of your movement: you are young, workers and Catholic.

Your enquiries have already revealed and continue to show you each day the suffering of the workers of various continents: problems of the sending to work of young people leaving school as well as the perils of prolonged idleness; problems of unemployment, housing, transport, leisure; problems above all of the very conditions of their daily labour, dangers that they face in their health and their morality. In order that the jocists of the most advantaged countries could actively intervene and tend a fraternal hand to their companions in difficulties and orient them towards a promising future, it is important to multiply contacts of all kinds by correspondence, information bulletins, but aboe all through personal relations, for which this International Congress gives you a marvellous opportunity. The solidarity which gathers you has transformed and raised your life, like a ray of sun crossing stained glass makes it blaze with a thousand fires. Moreover, you do not refuse to take part in the considerable effort that is necessary for the improvement of the situation of young workers of all races and all nations. You show yourselves to be true sons of the Church, by bringing to others as “jocist missionaries”, through the full exercise of your responsibility as young Christian workers the salvation that has been announced to you.

“The YCW is rich in its experience in the matter of education of working youth, and possesses a method that is proven and has shown its capacity to be adapted to the most varied circumstances. It is therefore capable of exercising everywhere it is present a large and durable action of popular education in collaboration with other official or private bodies which pursue the same objective. Its immediate contacts with worker reality allow it to trace out a complete plan of action in each case responding to the requirements of the situations and giving its members and through them to all the young workers the most effective assistance. We desire then that public authorities would increasingly recognise its services and ensure the material means necessary to this capital work, particularly in regions where there is an urgent need for intervention in the field of education.

“We desire, dear sons and daughters, that this world assembly of young Christian workers should manifest itself increasingly to your own eyes and to the eyes of the world the concrete possibilities of your movement when its members remain at the height of their commitments.”


Pius XII, YCW World Assembly, 25 August 1965 (Joseph Cardijn Digital Library)