Fidest – Agenzia giornalistica/press agency

Quotidiano di informazione – Anno 33 n° 335

The Church’s realism and trust in time of crisis

Posted by fidest press agency su giovedì, 11 giugno 2009

The work of the European meeting of bishops with responsibility for social issues from Europe’s Bishops’ Conferences, attended by 37 participants representing 22 Bishops’ Conferences, has come to an end. The meeting was organised in collaboration with the Croatian Bishops’ Conference and hosted by the Archbishop of Zagreb and CCEE Vice-president, Cardinal Josip Bozanic, who in his opening address explained the reasons behind the meeting: “The Church is always deeply involved where at stake is human life, the dignity of the human person, the common good, the right to work, to a dignified life and the defence of the weakest social classes”. Confirming the centrality of the human person, the Church defends “the public character of faith” and never tires of reminding society “of those values which are non-negotiable, because they are not placed there by human beings”. The Church is committed to “making her own responsible contribution to the drawing up of relevant answers to social problems, on the basis of her own heritage of faith and social experience”.   In Europe there is certainly no lack of episcopal commissions or Christian-inspired civil organisations established for this service. In the work of the Church continental Commissions, too, have a guiding role, that of identifying the shared areas of common work. If therefore on the one hand there is the need for profound intellectual work on the Church’s social doctrine for which Catholic universities and study centres have a strong duty to make available their knowledge and competence, with greater disposition to intellectual charity and a deeper faith in the ability of the Christian Word to animate even modern cultures and including their social syntheses; then on the other hand it is also necessary that awareness of the communal commitment increases. One notes, in fact, a certain ignorance among the faithful themselves about the Church’s social doctrine, which is often perceived as something separate from the concrete and immediate action of the charitable gesture.  From this stemmed the invitation from the CCEE President to the European “Justice and Peace” Commissions so that through their action they may bear “a prophetic word to the world”, a message of hope above all “in the defence of the most disadvantaged”. For this reason Cardinal Erdo revealed his desire to propose the constitution of a specific episcopal Commission to focus on these issues within CCEE.  The second part of the meeting focussed on the current economic-financial crisis. Introducing the theme was once again the Secretary of the Vatican dicastery Mgr Crepaldi, who spoke about the content of the Pontifical Council’s Note A New Pact to Re-establish the International Financial System. Unemployment is one of the most visible and serious consequences of the crisis. It is a problem which in some countries acquires ever more dramatic tones, impacts on a greater number of people and requires particular attention from the Church due to the serious consequences deriving from it for individiuals, families and the whole of society.  The meeting was interspersed with moments of prayer and the celebration of Mass which, together with the climate of friendship and fraternal sharing, provided reasons for hope for future collaboration on pastoral social action in Europe. (abstract from


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