The Cardijn Community International has greeted with dismay the news that 18 out of 24 new appointments to the Pontifical Council for the Laity announced by Pope Benedict last week are from Europe.
"It is astonishing to find that there is only one new nomination to the Pontifical Council for the Laity from Africa and from Asia", CCI Convener, Mr. M. J. Ruben said in Chennai.
"Does this imply that 75% of the most exciting lay initiatives in the Church today are to be found in Europe?”
"Referring to the proposal to establish a Secretariat for laity at the Holy See, the Vatican II Decree on the Apostolate of the Laity Apostolicam Actuositatem (Paragraph 26) stated that 'the various movements and projects of the apostolate of the laity throughout the world should also be represented in this secretariat'.
"We are dumbfounded that even after 40 years since the end of the Council that the Church appears to be reverting to its Euro-dominated past."
"We call upon Pope Benedict XVI to open up the field for such appointments to Catholics from around the world. The people in the least developed and developing countries are already marginalized and lead a life of despair. We expect the Church to respect the sentiments of the people of Asia and Africa” said Mr. M. J. Ruben, the International Convener of the Cardijn Community International.
April 28, 2008