BISHOP GRIFFIN'S VIGOROUS SPEECH '
Front Our Own Correspondent
" An outrage on the democratic constitution of this country," is how Mgr. B. Griffin, Bishop Auxiliary of Birmingham, described on Sunday the Board of Education's action " in publishing confidentially and in such small numbers" the (ireen Book containing suggestions regarding future education.
" It is grossly unfair to the millions of parents who will be affected in the event of the proposals being adopted," he said. " The parents, the majority of whom are fighting and working to secure freedom and liberty for the Nation and the world, have.a right to know what these proposals are, and what they involve. We do not favour such a hole and corner policy, and ask the Government to see that this publication is made known to all We need free and open discussion on such a vital subject and we shall not be giving away secrets to the enemy. I am convinced that the meeting will support my protest."
The Bishop was addressing in the unavoidable absence of the ArchbishOp of Birmingham a meeting at Si. Chad's convened at the express wish of Mgr. Williams to erect a Catholic Youth Council and comprising representatives of a large number of Catholic societies interested M youth work.
In outlining the scheme for the Council and suggesting its organisation, Bishop Griffin said that while there was no intention whatever to suppress or absorb already existing organisations, it was hoped to pool the experiences of these organisations.
YOUTH RALLIES NEEDED
" The Council should help and support each section of Catholic youth welfare," he urged, " as propaganda of the right type is so valuable at all times, the Council could do good propaganda work by publishing the activities of the various Catholic youth societies, by organising demonstrations, rallies, for which it will need the help of all societies interested in or engaged on youth work. Finally, the Council should be kept informed, by representation, of the activities of the Youth Committee of the city, and should have close co-operation with that body."
Looking forward to the day when availing themselves of financial assistance now at the disposal of organisers of approved youth activities, Catholics will have playing fields, equipment, clubs and other accessories, the Bishop continued: " We must make our apostolate attractive. I look forward to the time when in this area there will be three, six, or -even twelve large and attractive buildings in selected districts to be used as headquarters of Catholic societies of our Catholic boys and girls. These will supplement the present activities in local parishes.
" My reason for this expression of hope is that we must provide buildings which are in every way first class in design and equipment and such as seill be 'attractive to our boys and girls, young men and women. These buildings should be available to youth of both sexes, should be under joint control and should permit of every type of sound intellectual. physical and social activity. Let us begin our plans for this, We ought to begin one such centre immediately."
The Catholic Youth Council, formed at last Sunday's meeting, has as President the Archbishop, and as Chairman Bishop Griffin. The Lay Vice-Chairman is Dr. H. P. Newsholme, Medical Officer of Health for Birmingham; the Hon. Secretary, Mr. Alfred T. Flynn ; and the Hon. Treasurer, Mr. Edgar Ashby.
Professor Braddock, of Birmingham University, gave a lecture on the training and selection of club leaders—not more physical training experts, but real leaders, who would not he parties to the point of view that regards youth an " an unpleasant incident in the path from boyhood to manhood and womanhood."
An executive committee, in addition to the officers, was elected es follows; Dr. O'Reilly, Councillor Miss Annie Webb, Professor Braddock, Mr, Leighton. and Mr. T. O'Loughlin.
If was inthnked that a High Mass Jar Youth would be sung In St. Chad's Cathedral at 11 on Sunday. February I, 1942 — the nearest Sunday to the Feast of Si. John Bosco, who. at Bishop Griffin's suggestion, was adopted as Patron of the Council.