.- Europe must rediscover its Christian identity and defend against legislation and policies that threaten the family, said a main organizer of the recent European Conference on the Family.
The conference, (as previously reported here) focused on the theme "The Family: the Future of Europe". It was organized by the Institute for Higher Studies on Women of the Regina Apostolorum Pontifical University in Rome.
In an interview with Fides, Patricia Martínez Peroni said conference participants agreed that Europe has chosen to ignore its Christian roots and is, as a result, losing its identity.
They also concurred that the continent’s current policies, which only for material wellbeing and are having “a worrying effect on various aspects of the human reality, including the family.”
“These policies cut the human person in two, restricting the transcendent dimension to the sphere of private life and expecting people to live in social groups where citizens have rights but no rights are recognized for God who is the author of Europe and all humanity,” said Martínez, who teaches anthropology and psychology at San Pablo University in Madrid, Spain.
“Europe’s identity is Christian and it must be rediscovered and valued,” she stated. Martínez noted that Christian identity is budding again in certain European countries.
“In a situation of de-Christianization, Europe is again a field for evangelization. Like the prodigal son, the continent would seem to have squandered its heritage and must now be re-evangelized so it may rediscover its roots,” she said.
Martínez said she does not believe that the family is ailing, “but that it is threatened by anti-Christian ideologies and groups for which fail to see the family as a value or a juridical good to be protected,” she continued. “The family is endangered by legislation which attacks rather than protects and supports the family.”
The university lecturer said Europe’s social and political goals must respond to the human identity of the person and the identity of the family.
Conference participants discussed the family at the economic, political social, cultural and religious levels and offered practical suggestions that would help people rediscover the importance of the family, Martínez reported. This message, they concurred, must be articulated effectively in the public square.