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Gregorianum 2019 Fasc. 3

Solo online

09 - Van Gennip Joep - Did you mean that i ought to say - pp. 649-671

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JOEP VAN GENNIP

«Did you mean that I ought to say: “I’m a priest?”».
The industrial apostolate of the Dutch Jesuits in the city
of Rotterdam and its suburbs, 1947-1988, I

ABSTRACT PART I
The Jesuits were the first religious order in the post-war Netherlands to experiment
with a new form of mission in the workplace in Rotterdam and Amsterdam. This work
had already seen some success in the 1940s in France, inspired by the nouvelle théologie,
but with his Instruction on the Social Apostolate (1949) the Jesuit superior-general
started to promote ‘social work’ as a typically Jesuit mission. For many workers
traditional parish structures were insufficient, and the influence of communism was
considered a major danger. The Dutch Jesuit industrial chaplains used a method of
inculturation in which Catholic and non-Catholic labourers participated in discussion
groups moderated by a Jesuit. This method, called kernvorming, had previously been
used by the Flemish Catholic Workers’ Youth Movement, although Dutch Jesuits introduced
it for the first time to the industrial apostolate in the post-war Netherlands.
Soon it became the modus operandi of all Dutch chaplains to industry.
Keywords: industrial apostolate, social work, Dutch Jesuits, Rotterdam, forming
industrial cells (kernvorming).

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JOEP VAN GENNIP
«Did you mean that I ought to say: “I’m a priest?”».
The industrial apostolate of the Dutch Jesuits in the city
of Rotterdam and its suburbs, 1947-1988, I

ABSTRACT PART I
The Jesuits were the first religious order in the post-war Netherlands to experiment
with a new form of mission in the workplace in Rotterdam and Amsterdam. This work
had already seen some success in the 1940s in France, inspired by the nouvelle théologie,
but with his Instruction on the Social Apostolate (1949) the Jesuit superior-general
started to promote ‘social work’ as a typically Jesuit mission. For many workers
traditional parish structures were insufficient, and the influence of communism was
considered a major danger. The Dutch Jesuit industrial chaplains used a method of
inculturation in which Catholic and non-Catholic labourers participated in discussion
groups moderated by a Jesuit. This method, called kernvorming, had previously been
used by the Flemish Catholic Workers’ Youth Movement, although Dutch Jesuits introduced
it for the first time to the industrial apostolate in the post-war Netherlands.
Soon it became the modus operandi of all Dutch chaplains to industry.
Keywords: industrial apostolate, social work, Dutch Jesuits, Rotterdam, forming
industrial cells (kernvorming).

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