Peace of Christ,
From the 8th to 19th Century, the Catholic Church had a privilege to govern their own people in the big peninsula of Italy called Papal State. One of the notable artworks created during the era was a well-known St. Peter Basilica. The Papal State was later shrunk into the small Vatican Hill after the Lateran Treaty of 1929.
One of the large but forgotten impacts was the loss of economic wing in the Catholic Church that results in a new emphasis on pastoral work. Sadly, most countries do not believe in the universal pastoral authority of the Pope like in the old days. This situation has also contributed to the dated fashion of the Catholic World in global innovation, in particular, in technology.
Believe it or not, there are thousands or even million Catholics in the world, who do not know how to apply their professional talents directly for the benefit of the Church, the Body of Christ, as opposed to merely donating or consecrating a job for the Lord in as an intention, not that it is less valuable though. In the last few decades, Computer Engineers did not know how to help the Church for many in Church opposed technology while the only way contributing to the Church is via Catholic communities, parishes, and diocesan hierarchy. Like a Mother, the Church can and should welcome all talents & allow them to participate in New Evangelization in a more tangible way. It is in the act of real missionary, a soul finds their true functional meaning in the Church.
Let’s forget about technology. The world is moving toward entrepreneurship and the Church do not yet have a good support system and space for Entrepreneurs. This will cause the next generation to feel alienated, unwanted, and longing to find meaning in other social communities. The Church needs an Entrepreneurial Ecosystem that can set an example for the world economy to witness how Jesus can reign in the life of workers. Let us remember the word of our holy father, St. Francis of Assisi: Preach the gospel all the time, but use words when necessary.
What is an Entrepreneurial Ecosystem?
To make it short. It is ANYTHING that helps Entrepreneurs achieve their goals. It usually contains incubators, tons of networking, initiatives, discussions and various events among various parties involved.
An entrepreneurial ecosystem or entrepreneurship ecosystem is the social and economic environment affecting the local or regional entrepreneurship. Businesses located within places serving as incubators for creativity, innovation, and entrepreneurship have a greater chance of success.Wikipedia
Some good and well-known examples are Silicon Valley, Hollywood, Manhattan, and Tokyo. According to World Economic Forum, there are 8 pillars of Entrepreneurial Ecosystem:
- Accessible Markets
- Human Capital Workforce
- Funding & Finance
- Mentor & Advisor Support System
- Regulatory Framework & Infrastructure
- Education & Training
- Major Universities as Catalysts
- Cultural Support
Although an entrepreneurial ecosystem might sound like a city that naturally develops, there are many intentional or fabricated one. For an example: a new High-Tech area in Toronto intentionally created by the government to focus on tech startups. Another interesting fact: although it sounds like part of a governmental job to maintain an entrepreneurial ecosystem, most ecosystems are taken care by private sectors, individuals called an Entrepreneurial Ecosystem Builder.
How could this be a Catholic thing?
Let’s recall the goal of an Entrepreneurial Ecosystem; It should be to help entrepreneurship strive. There are conditions that transform an Entrepreneurial Ecosystem to be a Catholic one.
- It just happens to be in a Catholic Location. Ex. Philippines, Italy, Poland, Brazil, Vatican.
- It is an intended or fabricated ecosystem with or without a particular location. The goal is to help the Catholic Church in certain areas to create entrepreneurship easier, like:
- Missionary area that needs an economy.
- An area with tons of Catholic Businesses.
- International ecosystem to support global Catholic movement.
- Group of people who’d like to create an ethical business environment.
Note: Catholic Business Network, Entrepreneurship Movement like Economy of Communion, Lay Communities, Dioceses, Religious Orders of Networked individuals, and any good relationship with Christian/Secular organizations may contribute to the ecosystem as well.
Catholicer Entrepreneurial Ecosystem
In Catholicer, we help Catholic Professionals build spiritual-impact companies (a spiritual enterprise we call Faith Corporation). To achieve this, a global ecosystem that focuses on both Business & Spirituality is required. We work closely with Global Entrepreneurship Network (GEN) & a few Venture Capitals to help our entrepreneurs easily build a company on top of a sanctified ecosystem.
In all ecosystems, an incubator plays a very important role, for it is the place with the strongest ecosystem presence. Catholicer also runs Catholicer Space as its incubator. It is meant to bridge Spirituality & Professionality for our Faith Corporation applicant to move forward easily.
A few key efforts that Catholicer builds in its ecosystem are meant to form Faith Corporations:
- Redefining Corporate Working Hours to include spiritual formation, volunteering hours, social & family time.
- Redefining Venture Capital to focus on Patience Capital.
- Redefining Corporate world as a respectful land of Christian Freedom.
- Redefining relationship between companies to be more like a family that helps each other financially.
- Allowing a company to adopt Catholic Identity with the guidance of Religious orders and local dioceses.
- Inviting priests and religious communities to enter the frontline of business without crossing the line of poverty (vow).
- Focusing on a holistic approach of Spirituality, that contains not only ethics, but also evangelization, mysticism, communion, and charity.
- Redefining Business as a mean of vocation & evangelization, not to make one rich or successful.
- Redefining the call of business leaders as a discerner, rather than a leader.
- Focusing on Christian Economy first, but to serve everyone in goodwill afterward.
- Applying Spiritual Centered Design to all existing structures and cultures.
May God bless you. Please pray for us.