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CCA Newsletter – April 2020

Robert Bernard Maybury AO

Dear friends,

Some recent and upcoming news and events.

RIP Robert Bernard Maybury AO

Our sincere condolences to the family of Bob Maybury, a leading figure in the history of the Victorian YCW co-operatives, who passed away on 16th May, aged 92.

Bob joined the Deepdene YCW leaders group c.1943, and afterwards became a regional YCW committee member. Having gained accountancy qualifications through the Christian Brothers North Melbourne night school, in 1952 Fr Lombard invited him to become the new manager of the YCW Cooperative Housing Society group.

He was also a member of a group Ted Long convened to study cooperatives, primarily the literature of St Francis Xavier University, Antigonish, Canada. Having by then also established the YCW Cooperative Society (trading), the group lobbied for Victoria’s credit union legislation, and adopted the Revesby (Sydney) parish ‘home discussion’ model to develop Victoria’s extensive Catholic credit co-op network. At a 2011 CCA conference he recalled adventures and rosaries with either Frank McCann or Ted Long on evening drives to the country promoting parish co-ops.

Numerous members of these co-ops became instrumental in establishing industrial credit unions (eg teachers, police, fire fighters, nurses), and others in large companies. Bob’s report of his 1964 overseas study tour led the Association of Catholic Co-operative Credit Societies to accommodate this wider world, and change its objects and name to the Victorian Credit Co-operatives Association.  Bob later reflected that this was an early post Vatican II instance of a Catholic organisation ‘leaving the ghetto’.

He afterwards became vice president of the International Union of Building Societies and Saving Associations, and president of the Asian Pacific Federation.  After retirement he was made an Officer of the Order of Australia for services to the finance industry.

Thanks to the Uniting Church we have an excellent short video of Bob’s address to the joint CCA – Trades Hall event on co-operatives in 2012: https://vimeo.com/53561399

Bob Maybury on working in the YCW cooperative movement from Uniting Church VIC/TAS on Vimeo.
Bob Maybury on working in the YCW cooperative movement from Uniting Church VIC/TAS on Vimeo.

Bob also features in histories of credit co-ops, including Race Mathews’ recent Of Labour and Liberty: Distributism in Victoria, 1891-1966.

Fellow credit union movement worker Leon Magree recalls the privilege it was working with Bob from 1958 until the mid 1960s, when the VCCA moved from A’Beckett Street to Albert Park. The Old Paradians have paid tribute at: https://www.oldparadians.com.au/old-paradian-stories/rip-robert-maybury-ao

The funeral service will be webcast live at 10 am Friday 22nd May: https://tobinbrothers.com.au/tribute/details/16136/Robert-Maybury/obituary.html#tribute-start

What Would a Business Look Like if it was Founded on the Principles of Catholic Social Teaching? 

We are invited to join an online seminar on worker-owned co-operatives and YCW priest Fr Jose Maria Arizmendiarrieta, founder of the Mondragon Corporation. This Spanish worker co-operative employs over 75,000 workers and is an international inspiration and model.

The webinar is free but prior registration is required: https://www.sfarch.org/arizmendi    It is being held in San Francisco, so to register it will be necessary to add a zero before your zip code, as if you live in any US state.

It can be seen in Australia, tomorrow, Friday 22nd May at the following times: East coast 12.30 pm; Adelaide 12.00, WA 10.30 am.

CCA News

The coronavirus has held us all hostage for some time, but has generated discussion in the community and internally in CCA about the economy, ethics, and national strategic issues.

We welcome recent new members.  Membership information is available on our website here.

While CCA groups have been unable to meet, we have been active investigating the establishment of new branches.

Before the coronavirus the Sandhurst group had begun meeting people and investigating issues, including around soil and water in the region.

On the website is a range of Social Inquiries on topical issues, designed for use in small groups. The Adelaide group has promoted discussion on the Australian bishops ‘Digital Media’ social justice statement.

A reminder of the invitation to anyone who might be interested in following up issues identified in the 2019 AGM (Newsletter October 2019): the inquiry on the future of work; or discussion of a draft paper on issues considered by CCA since 2009.

We have attended Catholic Earthcare conference in Sydney, and (subject to present regulations) will assist in planning and promoting the forthcoming establishment of its ‘Earthcare Training Program’ in Melbourne.   We have been in contact with various Melbourne parishes, and Ballarat diocese, in this regard.

We are also represented on the Melbourne Catholic’s environmental ‘animators group’, which is moving to become the official agency for promotion and implementation of Laudato Si in Melbourne.

We assisted Catholic Social Services Victoria’s parish workshop on the environment, which has supported the formation of parish groups in Ivanhoe and Mitcham.

Subject to unknowns, it is presently envisaged that the 2020 AGM will be held in Melbourne on either the 23rd or 30th  of August. To be advised.

Australian Cardijn Institute (ACI)

A reminder that, while Cardijn Community Australia (CCA) is an organisation of adult Cardijn groups in the community, the goal of the Australian Cardijn Institute (ACI) is to advance the Cardijn educational and academic mission. Please also have a look at the ACI website, and consider joining up in support of our common Cardijn mission:

http://www.cardijncommunityaustralia.org

https://www.australiancardijninstitute.org