Spanish government’s “gestures” towards the Church could be “pre-electoral thawing”


The chair of Canon Law at Madrid’s Compultense University, Rafael Navarro-Valls, said this week the Socialist government’s gestures towards the Church could lead to a “pre-electoral thawing,” and he encouraged the faithful “not to let down their guard” at a “moment of transition” like the upcoming elections in early 2008.

According to the weekly bulleting, Alba, during a speech at the Congress on Catholics and Public Life, Navarro-Valls referred to gestures that the Socialist government has made to the Church in Spain, such as the acceptance of religious persecution in the Law on Historic Memory, the sending of vice president Maria Teresa Fernandez de la Vega to the ceremony of elevation of three new Spanish cardinals at the Vatican, the reversal of a decision to denounce the accords with the Holy See, as well as the sending of a delegation to the beatification of 498 Spanish martyrs at the Vatican.

“This does not mean this is not a tactic,” Navarro-Valls warned.  There still exists an “evident and unjust discrimination” in the field of education, he noted, resulting in the persecution of those “who oppose the existence of an education that is akin to indoctrination.”

During his remarks, Navarro-Valls reaffirmed the need of the State and the Church “to recover its essences” in response to the extremes of excessive division or union between Church and State, and he defended the independence of the State and the religious freedom of the Church against such “perversions” as “fanaticism and fundamentalism or secularism: politics without morality.”

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