Archbishops call for courage in the struggle for Bantu schools
ARCHBISHOP HEJRLEY of Durban has called upon the Catholics of South Africa not to lose heart although their mission schools among the Bantu people are facing the most critical situation in their history.
And Archbishop Whelan has old them: " I know your anguish of heart at the present time . . .
" But mark my words, the African people will become stronger and stronger. Their true merits in the industrial sphere will I conic to he recognised and re' worth. according to their real " Your people will surely rise above their present state as the poor section of the community.
" When that day comes your descendants will acclaim tiic stand which you make today for your ( atholic schools."
The two Archbishops were speaking at a congress of the Catholic African Union and Catholic African Teachers' Federation, which was attended by 10 other Bishops, 50 priests and 200 delegates. They were referring to the new Bantu Education Act, which was designed to bring all mission schools under State control through the reduction and eventual withdrawal of Government subsidies.
" Humanly speaking, the position looks impossible." said Archbishop Hurley. " Common sense would surely say that all is lost for our Catholic (Bantu) schools.
" However, no one knows what hidden powers of endurance there are in human nature until they are called out by extraordinary circumstances. This is especially so when man's intelligence and will are supported by religiousideals." He said th at even with the greatest efforts and sacrifices. the Church could not expect to pay the 3.000 Catholic mission teachers more than half the salary they are receiving now. "That is a hard thing to tell the teachers who have given such faithful service."
In a letter sent to Archbishop Hurley. the Catholic African Teachers' Federation pledged support to the Hierarchy in their decision to maintain the mission schools at all costs.
" Although fully aware of the consequences that may arise," the federation said. "we put our faith in Our Blessed Lady who has placed at our disposal limitless help through the Rosary."
The Malabar Catholic Congress, representing thousands of Catholics in South India, has expressed soidarity with the movement for Goa's union with India. A resolution expressed the hope that Portugal would follow France in transferring her tetritories on the Indian coast to the Indian Government.