John Allen is one of America’s foremost Catholic writers on Vatican issues. This excerpt from a recent address in Ireland is noteworthy. Allen enumerates Pope Benedict’s four pillars of thinking “with regard to the process of European integration”. They are worthy of reading for anyone interested in keeping abreast of current Vatican thinking about Europe and its relations in the world and with the Roman Catholic Church. You can read the article here.
Here is one quote regarding the Christian identity of Europe. “Suffice it to say that it is a bedrock conviction of Benedict XVI and senior Catholic officials that an integrated Europe cannot simply be an open market or an arrangement for mutual defense; it must in the first place be a community of values, and that those values ultimately rest upon the Christian foundations of Europe.”
Allen says Benedict feels the church must strengthen itself and bind up its divisions if it is to make any serious impact in, and upon, a future Europe. The Vatican sees Europe as being a major force in future world affairs, perhaps the deciding player in the critical issues facing the world.
For a deeper discussion of the link between the Roman Catholic Church and Europe you can follow our series on the subject in World News and Prophecy.