Canonisation News

CCI Media Release - Opening of Cardijn canonisation cause

posted 21 Jan 2014, 08:29 by Stefan Gigacz

Cardijn Community International

Media Release

17 January 2014

Cause for canonisation of Cardinal Joseph Cardijn, founder of the Young Christian Workers (YCW) movement

Archbishop AJ Léonard of Mechelen-Brussels yesterday officially launched an ecclesiastical tribunal to enquire into the cause for canonisation of the late Cardinal Joseph Cardijn, founder of the Young Christian Workers (YCW) movement.

Postulator for the cause is Belgian trade unionist and YCW alumni, Guy Tordeur, while Fr Felix Van Meerbergen, chaplain in Europe for the Cardijn Community International, will act as vice-postulator.

The first stage of the process will gather Cardijn’s writings as well as testimonies from those who knew him. Five theologians and six historians will collaborate in this work.

Born in 1882, young Father Cardijn began to organise young workers in the industrial suburbs of Brussels from 1912. Originally known as the Trades Union Youth, Cardijn’s movement adopted the name Young Christian Workers in 1924.

In 1925, after Cardinal Desiré Mercier hesitated to approve the movement, Pope Pius XI gave his backing to Cardijn in an event later compared by the theologian Yves Congar to Pope Innocent III’s approval for St Francis’ new order.

The YCW spread like wildfire reaching some 50 countries by 1939, also spawning a series of “specialised Catholic Action” youth and adult movements for students, farmers, professionals and others based on the Cardijn model.

Pope John XXIII’s 1961 encyclical Mater et Magistra, explicity adopted Cardijn’s famous “see judge act” method as did the documents of Vatican II where Cardijn was initially a member of Preparatory Commission on Lay Apostolate and later an expert in the conciliar commission.

In February 1965, Pope Paul VI appointed Cardijn a cardinal and archbishop, enabling him to take part in the Fourth Session of Vatican II as a Council Father.

Speaking of the lay apostolate, Pope Paul noted at the end of the Council that “the good seed planted fifty years by several generous pioneers and particularly a young Belgian priest had truly yielded a hundredfold.”

In 1982, British Cardinal Basil Hume described the Council as a “monument” to Cardijn who died in 1967.


Further information:

Contact: Stefan Gigacz,

Telephone: + 33 9 53 30 65 23

Official opening of the canonisation process

posted 17 Jan 2014, 01:49 by Stefan Gigacz

Archbishop AJ Léonard officially constituted the Ecclesiastical Tribunal to study the cause for canonisation of Cardinal Joseph Cardijn at a meeting at the archdiocesan centre in Mechelen on 16 January 2014.

Mgr Stefaan Van Calster will act as episcopal delegate (president) of the tribunal. Trade union leader Guy Tordeur was appointed as Postulator while Fr Felix Van Meerbergen is Vice-Postulator.

Fr Tim Peeters, a canon lawyer for the Mechelen-Brussels Archdiocese, was appointed as Promoter of Justice.

Ms Els Van Mulders acted as Notary for the installation of the tribunal and Mr Chris Van Houte will take on the role for the remainder of the process.

Five theologians, six historians and an official translator were also appointed.

The first stage of the process involves documenting Cardijn's life and gathering testimonies from those who knew him. Once compiled a report will be sent to the Congregation for the Causes of Saints in Rome. If approved by the Holy See, Cardijn will first be declared a Servant of God.

Documented miracles are required for the beatification and canonisation stages.







Prayer campaign

posted 8 Nov 2012, 19:57 by Stefan Gigacz

Dear Friend,
Cardijn Community International (CCI) in its recently concluded international conference 'Vatican 2+50: A Cardijn Perspective' re-examined the spirit and decisions of Vatican II in the light of Cardijn's contributions.
The conference was held in Manila, Philippines from the 11th to 14th October 2012 attended by CCI members, representatives from the IYCS, IYCW and other organisations from different countries.
At this conference, it was felt that the long felt desire of all Cardijn followers around the world to seek canonization of Joseph Cardinal Cardijn should be taken up seriously by the CCI with the support of all Cardijn movements, Cardijn alumni and all those who recognise Cardijn as one who pioneered the cause of the youth, workers and lay participation in the Church.
A working group was formed as part of this Campaign to study this issue and to start the process.
A prayer seeking divine intervention in this cause formulated at the conference is attached.
There can be no other better occasion than to start this prayer campaign on All Saints Day - a day in remembrance of all those known and unknown Saints (as well as yet to be recognised ones).
We request you to kindly make this prayer a part of your daily reflection and prayer from November 1, 2012. Kindly pass on this prayer to your all those in your community.
We also seek your support in our efforts to promote the cause of Canonization of Joseph Cardinal Cardijn, the founder of the International Young Christian Workers.
You may visit for a detailed life sketch of Cardijn.
With prayerful anticipation,
For International CCI,
Stefan Gigacz - MJ Ruben - Juanito Penequito - Fr. Reid Fernando

Cardijn Canonisation Committee launches

posted 8 Nov 2012, 19:53 by Stefan Gigacz

The Cardijn Community International is launching a campaign for the canonisation of YCW founder Cardinal Joseph Cardijn following its Vatican 2+50: A Cardijn Perspective conference in Manila from 11-14 October.

“Cardijn played a key role at the Second Vatican Council as a member of the Pontifical Commission on Lay Apostolate and later at the Council itself,” said CCI convenor, Stefan Gigacz.

“As recalled by former IYCW President Ms Betty Villa in her video presentation, Cardijn insisted that the Council should recognise the specific role of lay people in the world acting consciously and responsibly to transform the world in the ordinary circumstances of life. 

Cardijn's See Judge Act method was endorsed by the Vatican II Decree on the Lay Apostolate, Apostolicam Actuositatem, and was adopted in the drafting of the Pastoral Constitution of the Church in the Modern World, Gaudium et Spes

Former International YCW President Romeo Maione had earlier proposed that Cardijn be declared a Doctor of the Church for his role both as an educator and as a “healer” of the gap between the Church and the world. 

Please refer to Romeo Maione's proposal here: 

The first step in this process will be to work for Cardijn's canonisation, beginning with the establishment of a Cardijn Canonisation Committee comprising Fr S. Servatius (Kanyakumari, India), Fr Reid Shelton Fernando (CCI International Chaplain, Colombo, Sri Lanka), Mr X. Joseph, Mr Patrick Vishal Fernandes (Hyderabad, India).

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