It has always been part of the Church’s mission to encourage Catholics to follow a vocation to serve in public life. The quality of decisions made in civil society depends on the moral and spiritual formation of those who occupy leadership roles.
All our interns are given a full-time work placement in a public policy setting – five places on the programme involve shadowing Christian MPs or Peers in Westminster.
Although all of our interns are Catholic, we work with politicians from any Christian denomination. The scheme is cross-party and we place interns with different politicians each year.
The work our interns are immersed in is varied and interesting giving a fascinating insight into parliamentary life.
The aim of the programme is to help form the consciences of the next generation of Catholic lay leaders: people deeply committed to their faith, who have a vocation to public service and a desire to put their faith into practice by working towards the common good.
“ Working in an intense, interesting environment in parliament is a great introduction to working life. ”
There is no such thing as a typical day in the office in Westminster; with the political landscape being so changeable. However, I have been lucky enough to immerse myself in some important issues, as well as having the chance to compose Ministerial correspondence and write parliamentary briefings, speeches and articles for national publications.
It has truly been an amazing experience and one that could only have become reality through the internship. However, the job is only one part of the internship. It has been a multifaceted year that I am so grateful to have taken part in. I have loved every minute of it.
“ What is unique about the Catholic Bishops’ Conference internship is how faith becomes an integral part of daily life, rather than an additional aspect to it. ”
I currently work for Conor Burns, Conservative MP for Bournemouth West. The internship has not only given me the fantastic opportunity to work within the historic surroundings of the Palace of Westminster, but also witness first-hand the conversion of ideas and convictions into policy and law. What is unique about the Catholic Bishops’ Conference internship is how faith becomes an integral part of daily life, rather than an additional aspect to it.
Living in central London with Catholic students from around the world only increases this exposure to new ideas and cultures, whilst retaining a shared faith tradition. I enjoy learning from them, and hopefully they might have learn something from me too!
The internship has encouraged me to regard life in politics and public policy as a vocation, and not just a career choice, and I would like to pursue life in public affairs to experience another dimension to policy making.
I would recommend the scheme to any Catholic who wants their passion for politics and public service to be truly complimented by a solid grounding in their faith.