Committee of the CCEE and CEC: Europe needs more respect for creation

Monday, 09 March 2009, 19:12
All the Churches of Europe have to make their authentic contribution for the preservation of the natural environment. This is the conviction of the members of the General Committee of the CCEE and CEC, the meeting of which took place at the end of February, this year, in Hungary.
All the Churches of Europe have to make their authentic contribution for the preservation of the natural environment. This is the conviction of the members of the General Committee of the CCEE and CEC, the meeting of which took place at the end of February, this year, in Hungary. People have to learn to see themselves as defenders but not exploiters of creation – this is one of the basic messages which the representatives of different Christian Churches want to pass to the faithful. In addition, experience shows that anxiety about the effective honoring of creation is closely associated with anxiety about justice in the world. “Europeans are called to develop a sense of solidarity with the poorest people of this world, because they first become the victims of our scornful relations and irresponsibility to creation.” This is reported in the general communiqué of the CEC and CCEE after the ecumenical meeting which took place at the conference hall of Saint Adalbert in Esztergom. The theme of honoring creation is very relevant in the ecumenical movement and arose in particular in the European ecumenical assemblies in Basel, Graz, and Sibiu; however, in addition to this, Christian Churches all over Europe need to broaden the “greening” of consciousness. Churches in Europe have to study how to take responsibility and “be guardians of creation.” “As part of the discussion of the joint committee (CCEE and CEC) it was underlined that the crisis of ecological policy can be interpreted as a sign of deep spiritual crisis”; this was noted in the press-communiqué of the secretariat of the CCEE about the ecumenical meeting in Esztergom. “In this sense all the participants share the words of his Holiness Pope Benedict XVI: the external deserts of the earth are spreading, because internal emptiness has appeared very widely.” “On the occasion of the 20th anniversary of the message of His Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Demetrius, in which it was for the first time suggested to introduce a Day of Creation in all Churches of Europe and the whole world, the General Committee took the suggestion of the 3rd Ecumenical European Council, to use the time from September 1 (14) to October 4 in a special way for the contemplation and celebration of the divine goodness in creation and its care.” Also during the ecumenical meeting in Esztergom the general statement of the secretariats of the CCEE and CEC was presented in relation to the 3rd European Ecumenical Assembly in Sibiu, the acts of which are to be published at the end of May of this year. Regarding the future cooperation of the CCEE and CEC, the accent will be fixed on more intensive study of holy Scripture in Europe. In addition, general projects in the areas of honoring creation, migration, and peacekeeping are planned. Information The Conference of European Churches (CEC) consists of 125 Orthodox, Protestant, Anglican and Old Catholic Churches in different countries of the European continent, and also 40 associated organizations. The CEC was founded in January 1959 and today has bureaus in Geneva, Brussels and Strasburg. To the Council of Episcopal Conferences of Europe (CCEE) belong 33 Conferences (Synods) of Roman Catholic bishops of Europe, represented by their heads, and also archbishops of Luxemburg, and the principality of Monaco and the bishop of Chisinau (Moldova). The UGCC is also a CCEE member. The head of the CCEE is Cardinal Peter Erdo, Archbishop of Esztergom-Budapest, primate of Hungary. The secretariat is in Saint Galen (Switzerland).

Information Department of the UGCC
Bureau of the UGCC on Questions of Ecology 

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