Christianity needed to fill Europe’s empty cradles, missionary priest says

Fr. Piero Gheddo
Fr. Piero Gheddo

.- Responding to Lybian leader Muammar Gaddafi’s call for an Islamic Europe, a missionary priest has warned that this future is possible if the continent continues its denial of its Christian roots and its demographic decline. Returning to Christianity would also solve “the problem of empty cradles,” he added.

"The fact is that, as a people, we are becoming ever more pagan and the religious vacuum is inevitably filled by other proposals and religious forces,” commented Fr. Piero Gheddo of the Pontifical Institute for Foreign Missions, according to Zenit.

He said that with the exception of the Italian episcopal conference’s Avvenire, no newspaper has “seriously taken into consideration how to respond to this challenge of Islam, which sooner or later will conquer the majority in Europe.”

"The challenge must be taken seriously,” continued Fr. Gheddo, who also founded the missionary news agency Asia News. “Certainly from a demographic point of view, as it is clear to everyone that Italians are decreasing by 120,000 or 130,000 persons a year because of abortion and broken families; while among the more than 200,000 legal immigrants a year in Italy, more than half are Muslims and Muslim families, which have a much higher level of growth.”

While news media “never” speak of this, in his view, an answer must be found “above all in the religious and cultural fields and in the area of identity.”

He saw a “religious vacuum” growing with the decline of Christian Europe’s religious practice and the spread of indifference.

“If we consider ourselves a Christian country, we should return to the practice of Christian life, which would also solve the problem of empty cradles,” the priest commented, according to Zenit.

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