The story of Fr Henk Schram and the Sri Lanka YCW

Dutch historian Jo Schoormans has published a new article on the history of the Sri Lankan YCW and the role of Dutch-born YCW chaplain Father Henk Schram.

“From far Ceylon five former Young Christian Workers, now Sisters of Our Lady of Perpetual Help, come and show you [by way of letter] their gratitude and sympathy.” Belgian nuns wrote these words in 1947 to Joseph Cardijn, who was reputed as the great man of the YCW, writes Jo Schoormans.

“Some of the Sisters of Ragama, who payed a tribute to Joseph Cardijn, owed their religious vocation to the YCW. At the time, they were too busy caring for tubercular patients, unabling them to build up a youth movement. The sisters yearned for the opportunity of sacrificing themselves.0

“‘Ceylon’s sun is not too hot. The deaf and blind who have been entrusted to us, are not too exacting. Our beloved ones are not too far away, if one has good intentions and knows for whom one is working’, a sister wrote. In 1948, sisters could already inform YCW international headquarters of a movement of Catholic young workers in Colombo, led by fathers Oblates of Mary Immaculate.

Read the rest of Jo Schoorman’s article here:

Henk Schram (1919 – 84), Father of the workers