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Pope Francis and Cardinal Marx © COMECE

Pope Francis and Cardinal Marx © COMECE

Cardinal Marx: Europe Must Respect Life at Every Stage

‘Rethinking Europe’ – German Cardinal Tells ZENIT of Pope’s Hope for a Maternal Europe

Europe must respect life, from conception to natural death, and must have a positive attitude about its future.

German Cardinal Reinhard Marx, president of the Commission of the Bishops’ Conferences of the European Community (COMECE), told this to ZENIT following a press conference in the Holy See Press Office this morning, Oct. 27, 2017, that included Archbishop Paul Richard Gallagher, Secretary for Relations with States of the Holy See, and Vatican Press Office Director, Greg Burke.

They were presenting the ‘Rethinking Europe’ International Conference being held in the Vatican, Oct. 27-29, 2017.

Asked by Zenit about Pope Francis’ exhortation to Europe, to be maternal, fertile and vibrant, during his Nov. 25, 2014, visit to the European Parliament in Strasbourg, Cardinal Marx said: “I think the Pope wanted to underline with this image: ‘Europe, think about the future.’ And life is future.”
“We are a pro-life continent. We must be a pro-life continent.”
He said while this obviously refers to being against abortion, ending life, respecting life from the start to end of the human biography, he noted that the Pope was referring to the attitude one has, namely to be positive toward life.
“Therefore,” he continued, “I think that is good for Europe, to not think of the past, the measures of security, the wars, but of opportunities, of possibilities, and the future.”
“That is the spirit the Pope wanted and wants from Europe.”
Asked about what could be done about migration, the cardinal highlighted: “We need to realize that every person is made in the image of God. That is our conviction.”
Therefore, he said, we need to look at each person as a human being, apart from religion, and ought to try to help.
“We must also work so that the causes for the migration will disappear,” he noted, saying: “We need to work for a better world, especially for the poor and the migrants.”
Tomorrow, Oct. 28, Pope Francis will address the participants of this gathering, and is expected to highlight the Church’s commitment to this peace project and reflect on the future of the EU.

Rather than being a ‘classic congress,’ ‘Rethinking Europe’, the German Cardinal and member of the C9 explained, will be a dialogue. It is meant to foster a frank and open discussion between stakeholders willing to work for the common good and to put, the person, with its human dignity, at the center of public policies.

According to a press release, around 350 participants, from 28 delegations of all EU countries, among which high-level EU politicians, cardinals, bishops, priests, ambassadors, academics, representatives of diverse Catholic organizations and movements and from other Christian denominations, will be participating in this dialogue.

Participants gathered in the Vatican’s New Synod Hall today, Oct. 27, for the first time, and continue dialoguing in workshops tomorrow, before joining the general debate ending with the papal address.

The COMECE is made up of bishops delegated by the Catholic Bishops’ Conferences of the 28 Member States of the European Union.


On the NET:

Pope Francis’ address to European Parliament:

About the COMECO:

About Deborah Castellano Lubov

Deborah Castellano Lubov is a Senior Vatican & Rome Correspondent for ZENIT; author of 'The Other Francis' ('L'Altro Francesco') featuring interviews with those closest to the Pope and preface by Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Parolin (currently published in four languages); Deborah is also NBC & MSNBC Vatican Analyst. She often covers the Pope's travels abroad, at times from the papal flight, and has done television and radio commentary, including for Vatican Radio and BBC. She is a contributor to National Catholic Register, UK Catholic Herald, Our Sunday Visitor, Inside the Vatican, and other Catholic news outlets. She has also collaborated with the Vatican in various projects, including an internship at the Pontifical Council for Social Communications, and is a collaborator with NBC Universal, NBC News, Euronews, and EWTN. For 'The Other Francis': or

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