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Thursday, February 23, 2017
Cardinal Cormac to host EU bishops' summit
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¬†Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor, President of the Bishops' Conference of England & Wales, will host an assembly of the presidents of the 34 bishops' conferences making up the Council of European Episcopal Conferences (CCEE), in Leeds from September 30 to October 3. A dozen visiting cardinals are invited to the meeting which will be held at Hinsley Hall, Leeds: Cardinal Giovanni Battista, Prefect of the Congregation for Bishops, Cardinal Josip Bozanic of Croatia, Cardinal Christoph SchŲnborn of Austria, Cardinal Adrianus Johannes Simonis of Holland, Cardinal Camillo Ruini of Italy, Cardinal Audrys Juozas Backis of Lithuania, Cardinal Karl Lehmann of Germany, Cardinal Marian Jaworski and Lubomyr Husar (of the Byzantine Rite) from the Ukraine, Cardinal Godfried Danneels of Belgium, and Cardinal Kazimierz Swiatek of Belarus. From the UK, Cardinal Murphy-O'Connor, Archbishop of Westminster, who is a vice-president of the CCEE, will be joined by Cardinal Keith Patrick O'Brien, Archbishop of St Andrews and Edinburgh, of the Bishops' Conference of Scotland. Other bishops' conferences will be represented by senior archbishops or bishops. Cardinal Murphy-O'Connor said: "Ten new member states have just joined the European Union. A new Constitutional treaty has just been negotiated. A new European Commission is about to take office. Vital questions about the future membership of the EU have soon to be answered. 'The days have long gone when Europe and Christendom were synonymous. But the need for the values inspired by our faith to guide the work of the European Union has never been greater. So this meeting is a timely chance to debate those issues among Catholic bishops from across Europe.' He added: "I am delighted that we shall be joined by the Archbishop of Canterbury as we discuss the ecumenical links and the cooperation between faiths which are essential if we are to play our part in tackling the inescapable issues of poverty, violence and the stewardship of our planet." The meeting will discuss the role of Christianity and the Church in present-day Europe, examining questions such as: What is the state of health of Christianity in Europe? What is the relationship between Christian identity and the meeting between religions? How can Christianity contribute to defusing violent fundamentalism and terrorism? On Friday, October 1, the debate on the present ecumenical state and the Churches' contribution to Europe will be introduced by the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, and the Archbishop of Westminster Cardinal Murphy-O'Connor. In the light of discussions, the Presidents will be asked to approve a programme for the Third European Ecumenical Assembly. Another theme on the agenda is the relationship between the Churches and the European institutions, following the approval of the Constitutional Treaty and the debate on the reference to God or the Christian roots of Europe. In particular, time will be spent discussing current themes from the European agenda which impact particularly on the Churches, as well as examining the most urgent ethical questions of the day. The second part of the meeting will focus on forthcoming events common to the bishops' conferences, such as World Youth Day 2005 in Cologne, and future work of the CCEE with regard to evangelisation and pastoral care: the means of social communications, human mobility, environmental matters and working with other religions. During their stay in Leeds, the cardinals, archbishops, bishops and other delegates are to visit Ampleforth Abbey, for Mass, and York Minster, for a guided tour. The Plenary Assembly will conclude with the solemn celebration of Mass in Leeds Cathedral on Sunday, October 3, 2004. Source: CCS
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