.- After praying the Angelus with the faithful gathered in Saint Peterâs Square on Sunday, Pope John Paul II stressed the need for Europe to take into account its Christian roots was âfundamental for future developments of the Union.â
The Popeâs comments come the day after Rocco Buttiglione, the Italian nominee to the European commission, decided to withdraw from the post after he had been rejected by a European Union parliamentary committee for holding Catholic views on marriage and homosexuality, which were considered inflammatory.
"To take into account the Christian roots of the European continent means to avail oneself of a spiritual patrimony that remains fundamental for future developments of the Union," said the Pope.
"I hope that in the years to come Christians will continue to bring to all circles of European institutions the gospel message that is the guarantee of peace and collaboration between all citizens in the shared pursuit of common good," he continued.
In an interview on Sunday, Buttiglione, a close friend of the Holy Father, said that anti-Christian views were the only remaining acceptable prejudice in Europe.
"I sparked a battle, that has only just started and will continue," he told Italian daily La Repubblica. "Europe is scared of itself, of opening a discussion about what it really is,â said Buttiglione. âInstead it swings between two states which cannot identify it: its economy and political correctness."