Rome Newsroom, Jul 10, 2020 / 06:00 am
The European Catholic bishops’ commission urged the European Union this week to commit to deepening solidarity in its pandemic recovery plan.
The bishops issued an 11-page joint proposal in partnership with the ecumenical Conference of European Churches filled with recommendations on the priorities of the German Presidency of the Council of the European Union’s “Together for Europe’s recovery” package.
“The unsettling experience of the coronavirus pandemic has shown to us Europeans that we are not isolated individuals, but persons that need both human relations and to live together with the awareness of interconnectedness … It is necessary to revitalize our sense of solidarity by using and strengthening the possible measures of the EU to fight against the COVID-19 crisis and its consequences for all societies and for every human person,” the joint statement published July 7 said.
“We are strongly committed to developing the European project, our joint aim being a peaceful and prosperous, just, inclusive and sustainable Europe for all,” the Christian leaders stated.
German Chancellor Angela Merket presented the German Presidency’s proposed pandemic recovery plan to the Members of the European Parliament July 9, stating that “Germany is prepared to show extraordinary solidarity” to make Europe’s recovery more sustainable and innovative.
A delegation of the Catholic Commission of the Bishops’ Conferences of the European Union (COMECE) and the ecumenical Conference of European Churches met in the Belgian capital Brussels earlier in the week to discuss the German Presidency’s priorities with Michael Clauss, the Ambassador at the Permanent Representation of Germany to the EU.
The delegation stressed the importance of supporting both immediate economic recovery and a more long-term recovery by amending the current financial framework “in order to cushion the economic and social impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.”
“This is the time for all of us to demonstrate our joint commitment to the European project and to common European values of solidarity and unity, instead of capitulating to fear, extreme nationalism and shortsighted populistic interests,” they urged in the statement.