Canary Wharf: Catholics called to be apostles in the workplace

  Danny Curtin, 27, National President of the Young Christian Workers (YCW) yesterday challenged a clerical view of the laity calling for lay people to assume their role as 'missionaries of the interior' in the world. He was addressing a group of workers from a wide range of businesses at the monthly 'T-logy on the Wharf' talk, organised by the Canary Wharf Catholic Community. Speaking about their role as Christians in the workplace and the world Curtin challenged a clerical view of the laity: "The role of the lay people in the Church has been unfairly distorted in recent years with talk of lay ministries, of collaborative ministries in parishes, and of the laity lessening the priests, workload. Yes all this is worthy, but our real home is in the world, fed and nurtured by our priests, to go into our everyday lives and be God,s apostles. What a responsibility. If we don,t play our part in this nobody else will! "It is through the laity that the Church is in the world, and the more complex the world has become, the more there is need for us as lay people to rise to the challenge of being a lay apostle, a Christian leader in the world, actively living our lives in loving humanity towards one another." Curtin continued by calling attention to the unique nature of Canary Wharf. Historically having once been one of the busiest docks in the world, it is now a purpose built city with everything needed to service the 78,000 workforce. Curtin said: "This centre of commerce stands as powerful symbol of finance, of accumulating wealth, of high flyers and quick success stories. There is an energy about it during work hours, a machine with all its parts working away, keeping the markets fuelled with the trading of the day. And yet we know that somewhere in this machine are the lonely, the oppressed, the mistreated, the workers full of fear, the corruption and the desolation we are sadly bound to find among so many tens of thousands of people." "Yet, we are not part of a machine. We are co-creators with God, with a divine mission. No part of our life should be separate from the truth that our faith gives. We can all think of situations in our workplaces which do not reflect the God-given dignity and worth which we all share. Those situations are only transformed by us, by truly apostolic action." "Our mission is a mission of the interior, of our own reality and the reality of our lives; our colleagues, our family, our friends, or local community, the situations and concerns which cross our path each and every day. We can view it in its fullness, hold it up in light of the Gospel, and always act to make a difference. My call to you is to be missionaries of the interior. Be lay apostles in all that you do in this place." Speaking after 'T-ology on the Wharf' Danny said: "It is a great sign to have so many committed Catholics taking their faith seriously in the workplace The challenge to all lay people is to build the Church where it does not yet exist. Our place is in the world, in our places of work, our homes and with our friends, to be apostles, leading an active Christian life. We have a message to give. The best way for us to do that is to engage in what we used to call 'Catholic Action' seeing all those situations where the truth of our faith needs to be put into practice, and then acting to transform our own environments. The old method of See, Judge, Act is still relevant in all our lives today." Source: YCW

Share this story