History is a dynamic and infinite process

info Espagne VJA

The Young Christian Workers (YCW) was born and developed in Spain throughout the 20th century, as in so many other countries. Because of its youth, worker and Christian character, it was always deeply marked by all the contradictions, fears and hopes of those turbulent times. On the one hand, it was rooted in the Spanish Catholic tradition, recognizable not only in its religious dimension, but also in its very relevant social, political and cultural role. On the other hand, it faced without complex the profound changes and the new realities and challenges that were constantly emerging from the workers' struggles.

This double condition placed it, during all this time, in a difficult state of equilibrium, nevertheless very creative and deeply innovative: it always wanted to be and was, without renunciation or concessions, part of the worker movement and part of the Church. This self-taught and non-formal militancy read reality through the eyes of the history of the worker movement and its struggles against exploitation, and through the eyes of a liberating Gospel, whose reference is the person of Jesus of Nazareth.

But the most relevant fact to be noted here is that many of us young people and workers, with all the impatience specific to our age and condition, found in the YCW a school of life that helped us face our destiny as new social and cultural realities were emerging for which the old models of the past were no longer useful.

The book is eminently descriptive, even preserving the documentary language in which it tries to reflect the history of the Spanish YCW and its evolution: contextualized information of what happened and of the different ideas, debates, conclusions, expectations, conflicts, etc. that the JOC (Young Catholic or Christian Workers), JOC-F (Young Catholic Women Workers) and JOC-E (Young Christian Workers of Spain) movements, depending on the period, have been elaborating and developing over time.

The Asociación Encuentro Educativo Joseph Cardijn (Joseph Cardijn Educational Encounter Association) is a group that brings together former YCW activists of Spain. Since its inception, it has maintained a close relationship with the International YCW and the International Cardijn Association, inviting them to their meetings in Spain, and attending the International Colloquium in 2016 and the European Colloquium in 2019. In line with its objectives of safeguarding the historical heritage of the Spanish YCW and making it available to society, the Association presents this book hoping that it will be used to look back at history with an eye to the future.

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