Dear Friend, on 18 September 2014 the European Catholic Social Days open in Madrid. This gathering of Catholics committed to the social apostolate of the Church from across our continent provides a unique opportunity for the Church to reflect on its mission to and in contemporary society. Bishops, clergy and lay people of all ages will come together from all over Europe to address and discuss the major issues of concern to the Church as she considers how best to meet the “joys and hopes, fears and aspirations” of men and women of good will in today’s world.
Pope Francis has brought a fresh and challenging perspective to many of the issues at the heart of contemporary Europe’s search for identity and to the questions which inform political debate at every level. This concerns both the entire European continent, the countries of the European Union and the European Union as such, particularly challenged after the election of last May. A huge opportunity is presented to the Church to contribute to reflection on the profile of Europe into the future. We see the Social Days as a particularly significant moment in this cycle of reflection. We wish to connect the debate about Europe with the Social Doctrine of the Catholic Church.
At Madrid between 18 and 21 September one hundred and fifty participants of the Social Days will gather to deepen their understanding of the link between our shared Christian Faith and the future of Europe. Five distinguished key-note speakers will address the principal themes of the Social Days, workshops involving guest speakers and participants will explore a variety of public policy areas and leisure time will enable all those present – bishops, religious and lay people – to get to know one another better.
We would hope that the results of our study and our reflection may help us as Christians to have a greater awareness of the values on which a just and healthy society is built, and to commit ourselves to drawing up a Christian vision of a better world, based on the ideas and experiences arising during the three days of prayer, work, debate and reflection. They will be important reference points so that we can build a Europe which reflects the Church’s social teaching and is open to the values of the Kingdom of God in the multi-coloured mosaic which is contemporary Europe.
Mgr. Duarte da Cunha - CCEE Secretary General
Father Patrick H. Daly - Comece Secretary General
We warmly invite all of you to take part and join the event
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