European conference: ‘Human Economics’
Economics and the Human Person
Who serves who?
Slowly participants started arriving from the different corners of Europe and from the five different London airports as well. For some a great adventure due to the weather circumstances, for some a piece of cake.
After the introductory film ‘Wall street’ it’s time for the real work on human economics! Father Samuel introduces us into the different questions regarding work as a dimension of the human person and the challenge of economics in modern society. Tim Church from McKinsey & Company gives his experience and perspective on the noble purpose of economics: a service to mankind.
Small workshops encourage us to deepen our personal reflection on the importance of work in daily life, not only as a means to earn our living, but more as an essential part in the structure of becoming a human person.
Economics: between Ethics and Politics
Understanding our communities within the global perspective
Economics is a human invention and thus needs to be placed in a broader perspective. And so we are invited to look at the relationships between economics, ethics and politics. Mr. and Mrs. Lankes share their experience as a banker at the service of human development and as a former ambassador of Nicaragua. How can one be a Christian at the service of a country when there is so much corruption?: a key question where the different aspects need to be ordered and carefully looked at. Challenges with which we too have to deal, even though it is on a smaller scale. Nevertheless of great importance in our daily life. How do we deal with the duality of God an Mammon? Time also to place everything at the feet of the Lord and ask Him for His wisdom!
Unsettling for the human person?
After having reflected upon the symbolic value of money and having shared the experience of what it implies to be making money at one of the big banks (name British/French guy) we leave for a visit of London. Discovering this economic city and its long term investment: the National Gallery and the evensong at Saint Paul’s Cathedral show us the riches of art and culture. Last but not least: we are called to participate at the free market before attending Sunday Mass at the Westminster Cathedral, not to be confounded with the West Minster Abbey of course!
Towards Human Economics
Man and money. Searching a reconciliation
As we all have experienced these past years economics is far from being without risk. How do we deal with the possible risks, what risks can be taken and which ones are by all means to be avoided? Philpi Booth, from the institute of economic affairs, gives us an overview of the challenges we are facing with regards to the economical crises. Crises?? Doesn’t look like it when we speed up in the elevator to the 30th floor of Canary Wharf and receive some insight in this futuristic building which is almost a city in itself. Hardly anyone to be seen in the streets, but everything available underground for the almost 9000 people working there! Then back to reality when we meet Mrs. Donna Thompson, from the PLAN institute for caring citizenship. An impressive story which awakens us to reflect upon the economical participation of handicapped and their place in society. After High tea, which of course cannot be skipped in England, Jack Valero, press officer for Opus Dei , shows us the importance of sanctifying our daily work within society. A challenge for each Christian who wants to be fully engaged in today’s society.
Four full days of intense reflection lead us into London by night for some more time of sharing, before we leave, some really early, and return well nourished to our home countries! See you at the next conference in Vilnius: ‘Questioning Cultures’.