From Our Own Correspondent
To its seventh training course for youth leadership, on February 23 and 24, the Birmingham Diocesan Catholic Youth Council wel comed lhO clerical and lay youth leaders from many parts of the country, who came to discuss " links "with other national youth organisations, His Majesty's Forces and other dioceses.
The various speakers, who were welcomed by the chairman, Mgr. Bright, Auxiliary Bishop of Birmingham, included the Earl of Shrewsbury, representing the National Association of Boys' Clubs, Mrs. H. C. Wenger, 0.B.E, representing the National Association of Girls' Clubs, Monsignor Beauchamp. Vicar-General of the R.A.F., Fr Savage, army chaplain, from Milan, and Fr. Welshman, army chaplain, frorn Germany. The Earl or Shrewsbury said he wen ournbed this link wish Catholic clubs. The Midlands Advisory Council of the N.A.B.0 had hoped for contact with Catholics but this move had come first from the Birmingham Catholic
Youth Council. Ile mentioned that the N.A.B.C. hopes to set up a special full-time coulee for the training of youth leaders.
Mr Doughty, an ex-prisoner-ofawar, spoke on behalf of the national Barnswick appeal for boys' clubs, and menboned the great help received by prisoners of war in Italy, from the Vatican Very often the Papal Dole gate, in giving them the Holy Father's blessing, also passed on to them items of war news they could not otherwise obtain "Nearly 15,000 members of the R.A.F. have passed through the leadership courses," said Monsignor Beauchamp, speaking of " links" with the Fumes, " Men coming back after being away for several years are finding a new world. to which they are strangers. Children whom they knew have grown up and taken their place in parochial activities. They are liable to have an inferiority complex. You young people must eueourage them to take their part in parochial activities; you must change their inferiority complex into a superiority complex.
" Those who have received a training in leadership in the Services will, of course, take their part immediately in Catholic Action. We should realise what the young men who went away have done for civilisation. The peace must still be achieved, and civilisation, if it is to continue as we understand it, depends on Christianity."
The whole culture of western civilisation comes from the Church. That is being realised more and more by non-Catholic thinkers, Mgr. Beauchamp then quoted Dr. load : " I have come to realise that whatever 1 cherish most in western civilisotion has a source in Christianity."
Fr. Savaee, army chaplain, wise is running a leadership course for the army in Milan, arrived stilt in his flying-suit. He had been present when Cardinnl Griffin received the bigliello, and said that the Cardinal had sent his best wishes for the success of the weekend.
" The Pope," said Fr. Savage, .,looks primarily to the young lay apostolate for the future of the Church ; to youth who will speak, think and act like Christ. There is tremendous scope for the lay apostolate, especially in the Forces. I urge young men who are loining up to get in touch immediately with their chaplnin Youth clubs should, in turn, welcome shy young men and get them working."
Fr. Weidman, army chaplain, who had come over specially from Germany for the course. spoke of the great devastation in Germany and emphasised the importance of keeping in direct contact with the men in the Forces