CASC Lumen Magazine_Spr 2021

St. Joseph Business Guild

Faithfulness to Catholic teaching is one condition of membership. Also, members are asked to practice relational networking – which the guild’s website describes as “giving without the expectation of receiving in return.” Roger says, “Because of our common faith, we’re like-minded and motivated to help one another.” He also notes that the element of shared faith “speeds up the whole process” of trusting someone enough to do business with them. WORK IN THE CATHOLIC TRADITION The guild’s chaplains, Father Spencer Howe and Father Byron Hagan , assist with the spiritual aspects of the guild, including liturgies and retreats. Their parish, Holy Cross Catholic Church in northeast Minneapolis, hosts some of the guild events. Howe says that “the centrality of the family and the dignity of labor are two of the primary values of what the guild is about.” He draws a connection between the guild’s support of family-based business and the economic theory of distributism, which is rooted in the principles of the Catholic social

sponsored stained-glass windows in many medieval cathedrals. Although the St. Joseph Business Guild isn’t limited to a single trade or profession, it shares the principles of fraternal support and family- centered focus. “Our ultimate goal is to help Catholics provide for their families,” Roger says. “We want to direct our business and our best jobs to the faithful Catholics who support the parishes and schools.” St. Joseph, saint of families and workers, was an obvious choice for a patron. Members can access job boards where businesses post positions they’re hiring for, and job seekers post resumes. Amember database and quarterly meetings facilitate connections to mentors or networking contacts. A business directory is available

to the public on the guild’s website. It showcases the

spectrum of member businesses – manufacturers, mortgage brokers, construction companies, web designers, bakers and more. Membership is free for students. In the spirit of its medieval counterparts, the guild plans to start offering apprenticeships and internships later this year.

Guild chaplains Father Spencer Howe ’09 (top) and Father Byron Hagan ’12 (bottom).

tradition: “One of the hallmarks of distributism according to the articulated tradition of Chesterton, Belloc and friends …was the idea of broad distribution of the means of production – effectively to ennoble the family to make it possible for people to create their own wealth as a result of hard work, ingenuity and dedication to a trade.” Center for Catholic Studies Director Dr. Michael Naughton is on the guild’s advisory board. He sees the guild’s mission as a natural connection for the Catholic studies academic degree program, in which

St. Thomas Lumen Spring 2021 Page 9

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