Today the Church recalls the 7th anniversary of Pope Francis’ historic and moving visit to the Italian island of Lampedusa, a journey he undertook just four months after being elected Pope and where he denounced that the Mediterranean migrant tragedy was “a painful thorn in my heart”.
An ecumenical delegation of the Commission of the Bishops’ Conferences of the European Union (COMECE) and the Conference of European Churches (CEC) have met in Brussels on Tuesday, 7 July 2020, with Mr. Michael Clauss, Ambassador at the Permanent Representation of Germany to the EU, to exchange on the priorities of the German Presidency of the Council of the European Union.
In a recent letter sent to the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Nigeria, H.Em. Card. Jean-Claude Hollerich SJ, President of COMECE, expressed his solidarity to the Christian communities in the African country, who are “living a situation of continuous attacks by terrorists, insurgents and militias, that in some cases reaches levels of genuine criminal persecution”.
The history of the Church shows us how the instrumentalisation of Christianity by politics has been a recurring fact.
German Lutheran and Catholic bishops have criticised the political “egotism” and “reciprocal blame games” that have marred the EU’s COVID-19 response to date, and have warned that “only a united Europe can overcome the societal, economic and social consequences” of the pandemic.
Church relief and development agency Caritas Europa is pushing the EU to honour its commitment to resettle 30,000 refugees in 2020, warning that now “more than ever” in the context of COVID-19 “we need global solidarity towards those fleeing war, crisis and persecution”.
Giulia Cicoli is the co-founder and programs director of Still I Rise, an NGO that provides education and protection to vulnerable child and adolescent refugees in Italy, Greece, Turkey, Syria, Kenya and Mexico.
The Portuguese Bishops have called for a “globalisation of solidarity” to meet the COVID-19 economic and social crisis they are warning will be and already is “unparalleled in recent history”.
The annual COMECE-CCEE Presidencies meeting was held on Wednesday, 3 June 2020 with a special focus on the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The EU Bishops of COMECE have joined their Ukrainian counterparts in condemning the “deplorable” practice of surrogate motherhood.
“Justice must not be just a slogan”, EU Bishops have warned the bloc on the economic and social recovery after the coronavirus pandemic.
“May your example ignite in society a renewed desire to promote an authentic culture of welcome and solidarity”, Pope Francis wrote to the Italian Jesuit Refugee Service.
The EU Bishops of COMECE, the Commission of the Bishops’ Conferences of the European Union, have criticised the “self-centric” actions of member states during the COVID-19 pandemic and urged them to adopt a new Brussels-proposed rescue fund.
The major archbishop of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church (UGCC), Metropolitan of Kyiv Sviatoslav Shevchuk, shared his thoughts on peace in Ukraine and Europe in an English-language interview.
The COVID-19 crisis “is nothing compared to the difficulties that will be caused by climate change”, Cardinal Jean-Claude Hollerich has warned.
The Centro Astalli – the Italian Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS) – has accused the EU of a “shameful tug of war” over migrants.
German Churches have criticised EU migration and refugee policy, calling it, in its extremes, “incompatible with human dignity”.
On the occasion of the International Day of Families, Caritas Europa calls on the EU to prioritise the creation of the Child Guarantee and to back it with sufficient funds.
In statements for Europe Day this May 9, Church aid organisation Caritas Europa and the European Christian Workers’ Movement have warned the 27 member states of the EU that “this is the hour of truth” for the Union.
Pope Francis turned his thoughts to Europe on the occasion of the 70th anniversary of the Schuman Declaration of 9 May 1950.
In a message to mark Europe Day this May 9 and the 75th anniversary yesterday of the end of World War II, the Jesuit Conference of European Provincials has urged the EU not to return to the “old normal” after COVID-19 but instead to work for “radical change” by bringing about “effective solidarity with the poor, the natural environment and future generations”.
On the occasion of Europe Day this May 9, Cardinal Jean-Claude Hollerich has exhorted the continent to “solidarity and charity” to beat the “virus of nationalism and egoism”.
Recalling the end of World War II on Victory in Europe Day today, the German Churches have issued a call “to resist hatred and to advocate for justice and reconciliation”.
The Commission of the Bishops’ Conferences of the European Union, or COMECE, has today alerted in a press release that “freedom of religion is at stake” in ongoing COVID-19 church closures, at the same time it called on governments to reopen churches in “a clear and non-arbitrary way, in full respect of and in dialogue with ecclesial institutions”, in the words of its General Secretary, Father Manuel Barrios Prieto.
“The adverse repercussions of the virus on the economy will not be bearable for long”, the president of Caritas Greece has alerted the EU.
At the start of Mass at the Casa Santa Marta on Wednesday, the liturgical memorial of St. Catherine of Siena, patron saint of Europe and virgin and doctor of the Church, Pope Francis prayed for Europe.
COMECE, the Commission of the Bishops’ Conferences of the European Union, welcomes the statement recently released by the European Group on Ethics in Science and New Technologies (EGE), calling the EU and its Member States to be vigilant on the “necessity and proportionality of any policy and technological intervention that – taken in the context of the Covid-19 pandemic – suspends, even temporarily, fundamental rights”.