23rd Mar 2023

Finnish Church supports reference to Christianity

  • Europeans do not see the EU as just a political and economical union (Photo: EU Commission)

The Finnish archbishop Jukka Paarma would like his country to support a clear reference to Christianity in the future European Constitution.

Speaking to the Swedish language daily, Hufvudstadsbladet, after meetings in Brussels, Mr Paarma said the Finnish government should think again if the question becomes a sticking point in the current intergovernmental negotiations on the future Constitution.

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Leaders of the 25 EU current and future member states are expected to make the final decision at the Brussels summit 12-13 December. So far the Finnish government has not supported calls for a reference to Christianity.

A specific mention of Christianity in the Constitution could cause problems in the future, when Turkey, a Muslim country, may join the Union.

"We cannot deny that Islam and Judaism have had historical influence in Europe and have it even today. But Islam and Christianity do not have the same weight", claimed Mr Paarma, according to Hufvudstadsbladet.

Millions of Muslims and people believing in religions other than Christianity are living in the European Union.

Catholic countries such as Poland and Ireland are pushing strongly for a reference to Christianity to be entered into the new Constitution. France and Belgium, however, are equally strongly opposed.

The Convention, which drafted the Constitution, included a reference to the religious heritage of the European identity and civilisation, but did not make an explicit reference to Christian heritage.

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