2006-07-11 09:05:00 作者：张士江
为搞好这次庆祝活动，我们特别邀请了几位国内著名的学者专家，举办 “社会公益研讨会”。 我们希望研讨会可以为捐助人和受助学生代表以及嘉宾朋友们，尤其为三个培训班的学员提供一个了解当前天主教会与中国社会以及中国公益事业发展状况的良好机会。把一个庆祝会延伸到一个与公益事业有关的研讨会，我想，这为我们今后搞好社会服务工作更有实际意义。因此，这次研讨会也是进德公益奉献给大家的一份特别的礼物！
Today, we celebrate the unveiling of the Name-tablet of Jinde Charities, 10th Anniversary of Vocation and Education Fund and Seminar on Social Service. At the same time, we have the official opening of the three training courses: “Basic Nursing Care for the Elderly”, “2006 On-going Formation for Priests” and the second training course for University students “Love Life, Live Faith” which run concurrently here.
First, on behalf of Jinde Charities I welcome Mr. Liu Deshen, director of the China Catholic Social Service Committee, Mr. Liu Yuanlong, Secretary General, Mr Liu Qing, Vice Minister of the Provincial United Front, Mr. Ma Yujun, Vice Director of the Provincial Department of Religious Affairs, who despite their busy schedule honor us with their presence. We extend our warm welcome also to our learned friends, members and students of the Fund.
That Jinde Charities managed to register itself, to continue to organize training courses which are beneficial to society; that in the past 10 years, the Vocation and Education Fund succeeded to give financial help to numerous primary, secondary and university students, we owe it to the understanding, trust and support of the leaders of the different government departments, clergy and Catholics of the Church and friends of society. I take this opportunity to thank our leaders, guests, clergy and Catholics，members and friends.
Now, let me explain briefly the “celebration and seminar” and the three “training courses”
I． Registration of Jinde Charities.
On May 1997, Beifang Jinde, Catholic Social Service Centre was established in Shijiazhuang and became the first Catholic Non-profit Organization in China. The eight main services were: Emergency Aid (individual and disaster relief), social development, education and training, scholarship, HIV/AIDS awareness/prevention/care, anti-trafficking and care for the elderly. In Spring 1998, Beifang Jinde spent the first big sum of 2,600,000 yuan on the disaster relief in Zhangjiakou. In August 1998 Beifang Jinde received the government’s approval. Our original plan was to have Beifang Jinde registered as “Jinde Foundation” which would enable us to solicit public donations. However China’s State Council’s newly revised regulation on “Foundation management” requires a minimum of 4-8 million yuan.. We could not raise such an amount at once so we decided to register as a Non-Profit Organization. On 11 April 2006, Beifang Jinde was registered officially in Hebei Civil Affairs Department as Jinde Charities. The registration number is 110007.
The reasons for the registration are: Firstly, Jinde Charities received finally a legal status which enables it to enjoy a series of the national preferential policies which include tax exemption. Secondly, Jinde Charities has already the registration number of an organization which enables it to open a bank account according to the law. Thirdly, Jinde Charities can lawfully advertise for and employ staff, and also offer them different social securities. Jinde Charities’ registration is an important turning point in the history of its development. It signifies that Jinde Charities will be more specialized, systematic and transparent in its services for society. In sum, this registration guarantees the constancy, continuity and standard of the services and development of Jinde Charities, and will promote the positive advancement; as a result, more marginalized people will be helped.
This celebration of the unveiling of the Name-tablet is also a good opportunity for us to change the name of “Beifang Jinde Catholic Social Service Centre. Obviously, Jinde Charities decreases the luster of the Church itself, gives prominence to social service, and is consistent with “Practicing Charity, Witnessing Faith”. I believe, “Jinde Charities”, simple and clear, a name full of deep meaning will slowly become a good and unanimous brand name for Jinde colleagues, Jinde partners, Jinde members and all Jinde’s friends.
II． 10th anniversary of Vocation and Education Fund.
At the beginning of 1996, while I was studying in the Philippines, I started the “Vocation and Education Fund” for the children of my hometown Xingtai. At the initial stage, a few volunteers, with the interest of a capital of 10,000 yuan could only help a few seminarians, sisters and poor children with the miscellaneous fees. In 1998, we moved the Vocation and Education Fund from Xingtai to Shijiazhuang, and the target of our assistance extended from within the province to outside the province. At present, the confines of our assistance to students has already expanded to the 24 provinces, cities, and autonomous regions; our assistance has expanded from seminarians and novices to students of Universities, Secondary and Primary schools, among whom were 16 students from the minorities.
Three years ago, with the great support of clergy and Catholics of places like Shijiazhuang, the Vocation and Education Fund has experimented with “membership” policy Now we have 600 members from different parts of the country. These members and other partners and caring people became the backbone of the Fund. Every year 400,000-500,000 yuan of donation is guaranteed, which fulfills the dream of schooling for a big group of children.
Strictly speaking, in the past 10 over years, even though Vocation and Education fund helped a lot of students, the name is not very suitable and also does not comply with the regulatory norms of the country. So from 2004, we integrated Vocation and Education fund with the Scholarship fund of Jinde Charities. Thus, we save manpower. However many clergy and Catholics still like to use the name Vocation and Education Fund. So Jinde Charities Scholarship Fund maintains the name temporarily to facilitate cooperation and contact with members from different places. (I think, Vocation and Education Fund can be changed to “Special Education Fund” or “Special Scholarship Fund” to remember an elder who attached great importance to the development of talents. Tomorrow in the symposium, we can take the name as a topic for discussion). Of course, name is not important, important is how to help students from different places, how to manage and distribute well everyone’s love offering, and how to connect donors and beneficiaries with a bridge of love.
III． Celebration， Seminar on Social Service, and Three Training Courses
We started to make preparations for the celebration of the Vocation and Education Fund, to express our gratitude to all those benefactors for their loving support and use it as an occasion for the donors and the representatives of the students who were helped to meet and communicate with each other. In the meantime, Jinde Charities was successfully registered, so it is necessary to hold the unveiling of the name-tablet ceremony. Thus, we decided to combine the two celebrations into one. Considering the question of time, we decided not to hold the ceremony where the temporary office of Jinde Charities is, but at the site of the celebration.
In order to make this celebration a success, we especially invited several scholars and experts well known in China to participate in the Seminar on Social Service. We hope that this seminar will provide a good opportunity for the donors, representatives of the beneficiaries, and the specially invited guests, particularly the participants of the three training courses, to get to know the present day Catholic Church, the Chinese society and the development of social service in China. I think that to include a seminar related to social service in the celebration has a greater practical significance for the improvement of our future social service.
Friends，students, the series of celebrations today, is also the opening ceremony of “Jinde Care for the Elderly training course” (10-20 July), “Jinde 2006 training course for priests” (10-18 July) and “Jinde’s second ‘Love Life, Live Faith’ training course for University students. At the beginning of this year, the provincial leaders of the Chinese Catholic Church have already included the three training courses in the 2006 year plan and delegated Jinde Charities to organize. Even though the three training courses will not have the opening ceremony separately, this combined opening ceremony is a whole day affair; I hope participants will treasure this learning opportunity. The responsible for the respective training course must lead their own group and take good care of our participants.
Everyone knows, most of the priests are busy doing pastoral work and evangelization in the front line; the social services of the sisters from the different parts of China are very outstanding, some of the sisters are serving the front line of society; students all this while are studying hard in their universities. The different talks and sharing of this seminar provide everyone with an opportunity to understand the society and Church in China, strengthen the knowledge of social service, attach great importance to services of volunteers, spread Christ’s spirit of universal love, witness Good News. Of course, some university students are already our volunteers, they participate in HIV/AIDS awareness/prevention and educational activities in the rural areas. I hope every participant will make full use of this learning opportunity, participate with enthusiasm, listen attentively to the talks, care for society and serve society.
IV． The Church in China must maintain a balanced development while reinforcing the dynamics of its social service activities.
Since the time of Jesus, the Church has been paying great attention to the spirit of universal love, humanitarianism and charitable works. This has always been the advantage and fine tradition of the Church. Today, our country is in a transitional phase of rapid development. The Church in China should concern itself with the needs of the Chinese society, especially the needs of the marginalized in society. Therefore we must lay emphasis on charitable works, and reinforce the dynamics of our social work. For example, a lot of work has been done in the area of social service in Beijing, Shanghai, Tianjin, Chongqing, Shenzhen, Xi’an, Shenyang, Shanxi, Guangxi, Hebei, etc. Jinde Charities has also done some work in disaster relief, prevention and awareness of HIV/ AIDS, scholarship, care of the elderly, and social development in many places in China。
I think that, while strengthening social service and laying emphasis on the development of charitable works, the Church in China also needs to maintain a balanced development in the areas of pastoral ministry, evangelization, higher education, academic research, culture, arts, and so on, living out its own uniqueness and bearing witness to the faith. The balanced development of the Church in China will benefit the stability of society.
V． Strengthen the cooperation with the whole of society in China and overseas, and make contributions to the construction of a harmonious society
Today, the director and assistant director of the Social Service Committee of the Catholic Church in China have come to attend the ceremony of the unveiling of the name-tablet of Jinde Charities. Obviously, it is a sign that the Church strengthens and lays emphasis on social service. Social service centers or committees of the dioceses of Shanghai, Xi’an, Liaoning and so on have all sent delegates to attend this celebration. Now all the social service organizations of our local Churches have the opportunity, time and personnel to strengthen mutual exchange and cooperation. This cooperation is very important for local Churches and indeed the whole Church in China. Every time when we do disaster relief, we try to help the local Church establish its own social service centre. We hope that, under the leadership of the Social Service Committee of the Church in China, every diocese will set up its own social service centre or office. This is a sign of the maturation of the local Church. The Church in China cannot receive only. It also needs to constantly give, to build up society, to contribute to society, to witness the faith and live out the faith.
At the same time, Jinde Charities will also strengthen its cooperation with all circles of society, including individuals, communities, enterprises, etc, and promote communications between social service activities in China and abroad. Meanwhile, we will enhance the transparency of the use of funds, so that the donors clearly know how the funds are used as well as the result, strictly abiding by the system of finance and accounting, regulating the management of donations. We will accept the the supervision of society and the Audit Department, in order to ensure that the donations are used for charitable works of society. We will make further improvements on ourselves, enhance the level of management and service, and try to perfect the regulatory system, reinforce human resources, so that our management will be more and more scientific and standardized.
Friends, social service is a sacred and noble cause to share the burdens of the nation and meet the needs of the people. It is also a fine tradition in the Catholic Church. At present, President Hu Jintao has put forth the goal of constructing a harmonious society in our country. The realization of this lofty goal depends on the participation of various forces in society, especially of the non-governmental forces. For through our work, we may awaken more and more people of good will so that they may live out their compassion and charity in a better way. In this sense, we are making contributions to the country in another way.
We also hope that, in the process of building up a prosperous and harmonious society, our country may have more such organizations to participate in this work, to speed up the building up of a harmonious society. The idea of a human society of great harmony is expressed in the Book of Rites, which envisages the whole world as one community, in which the old can enjoy their old age, the young can exercise their talents, the children can grow up healthily, and the widows, widowers, and disabled are cared for. We believe that, if we awaken the hearts of benevolent people, we can draw closer to this goal.
I believe: all the colleagues of Jinde Charities will live up to our expectations, and make a giant step forward in the social service of Jinde Charities. At the same time, we sincerely hope that leaders at different levels and all circles of society will pay close attention to, actively take part in and strongly support Jinde Charities, so that we may make greater contribution to helping the masses in need and the marginalized and building up a harmonious society. Thank you!