intercultural dialogue

Intercultural dialogue

Latest

Press Release
06.12.2017 - 16:12
The role of religion in European integration, the migration crisis and relations will top the agenda of the EPP Group’s 20th Annual Intercultural Dialogue with Churches and Religious Institutions in Zagreb, 7-8 December 2017. “20...
György Hölvényi MEP, Jan Olbrycht MEP
News
02.05.2017 - 09:45
The EU is a leading defender of religious freedom but must increase its efforts to prevent intolerance. A robust review of the EU’s Guidelines on the Freedom of Religion or Belief is one concrete way to do that, according to Co-Chairs of the...
European Flag
News
02.05.2017 - 09:45
Open, constructive and respectful interreligious dialogue can play a positive role in combating negative religious stereotyping, hatred, incitement, violence and extremism, attendees heard at the annual meeting between the EPP Group and the...
György Hölvényi MEP
News
28.03.2017 - 14:45
"Everything must be done to end the Syrian war, to end the bloodshed and bring peace to Syria, so that the millions of displaced persons can return to their homes and rebuild their lives," said György Hölvényi, co-Chair of...

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Events

Events

Conference on religious rituals and fundamental rights
10.04.2018 - 16:00

Conference on religious rituals and fundamental rights

Freedom of religion, as a fundamental right, is a central pillar of our society and is the origin of manifold cultures...
Seminar on the importance for Europe to protect Christian cultural heritage
06.03.2018 - 16:00

The importance for Europe to protect Christian cultural heritage

Cultural and religious heritage has a universal value for people and societies. In 2015, the European Parliament...
Conference on oriental Christians in the MASHREQ region: the consequences of the conflicts in the Middle-East on Christian communities
28.02.2018 - 16:30

Oriental Christians in the MASHREQ Region: consequences of the conflicts in the Middle-East on Christian communities

Visit of H.E. Mons. Jean-Clément Jeanbart, Archbishop of the Melkite Greek Catholic Archeparchy of Aleppo, Syria...

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Why intercultural dialogue is important

Intercultural Dialogue

Daily events in the world and in Europe continuously highlight the fundamental importance of churches and religious communities in resolving conflict and social peace both on a regional and on a local level. Religious institutions in many ways help create, communicate and protect societal values. By doing so, they exert a significant amount of direct and indirect influence on society. Churches do not operate by themselves but through the people who belong to them. So when we speak about churches, we are not speaking only about institutions, but also about hundreds of millions of people around the world who are believers.

Contacts
Manfred WEBER
Chairman of the EPP Group
 
Supported by
Jan OLBRYCHT
 
 
Staff
 
 

It is important for the EPP Group (Christian-Democrats) to keep contact with the representatives of various religious groups while mutually acknowledging each others’ independence. The EPP Group is the only Group in the European Parliament which has a long-standing dialogue with monotheistic religions such as Orthodox, Catholic, Protestant, Islam and the Jewish faiths.

In contemporary European and global politics, there are numerous problems that can only be solved by broad social cooperation. The financial crisis, the ever-increasing social tensions and issues related to migration are all global challenges that we are faced with today. It is important for the EPP Group to have knowledge about the thoughts and activities of various religious organisations relating to these issues.Freedom of religion is a basic right. Whether it is speaking against mass persecution of Christians in countries of the Arab Spring, or about helping the increasing numbers of Islamic communities relocating to Europe find their place in the scheme of European principles and values, the EPP Group believes that it is its duty to defend the right to freedom of religion, to openly discuss these issues, bring them closer to the public eye and into the mainstream of European debates. We can only live up to this enormous challenge if we seek opportunities for dialogue and cooperation with the religious communities involved.

The tradition of dialogues started in April 1996 in Constantinople (Istanbul) with HH the Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I. The fundamental aim of this dialogue, which is to date also enshrined as a legal basis of Article17 of the Lisbon Treaty, is a common responsibility for Europe. Clause 3 of this Article reads:

"3. Recognising their identity and their specific contribution, the Union shall maintain an open, transparent and regular dialogue with these churches and organisations."

Consequently, both politics and churches need to continuously adapt and refine their actions in order to respond to new challenges.

 

 

Our activities

Through our activities, we build upon a long tradition and commitment to dialogue with churches and religious organisations. Several hundred people, including Members of the European Parliament, religious leaders, government representatives, invited guests and the interested public participate every year at our conferences on religious dialogue. These annual conferences are high-level two-day events that take place once a year outside Brussels and discuss current issues pertinent to intercultural dialogue and the dialogue between religion and politics.

Contacts with highly-respected experts from churches are continuously widened through other public and internal meetings. We organise public hearings on current affairs that fall within the scope of religious dialogue. We also hold internal meetings of the EPP Group Working Group on Intercultural Dialogue where we discuss issues with ecclesiastical leaders and religious experts from around Europe and beyond.

 

 

Publications

Latest

Step up fight against racism in sport
24.05.2018 - 10:30

Step up fight against racism in sport

Two days of events this week are aimed at raising awareness and fighting racism and anti-Semitism in sport. MEPs and members of the sports world are...
Traffic on multiple lane highway
24.05.2018 - 09:50

Road charges: fair charging for better roads

The European Parliament’s Transport and Tourism Committee voted today to phase out Eurovignettes for heavy goods vehicles and vans and for...
Security concept
23.05.2018 - 17:25

Privacy Shield needs to be improved, not abolished

The EU-US Privacy Shield offers legal certainty in free trade and the protection of data; jeopardising it now would be a step back for European...
Zuckerberg testimony requires concrete action, says Weber
23.05.2018 - 15:15

Zuckerberg testimony requires concrete action, says Weber

The meeting between Parliament leaders and Facebook CEO Zuckerberg left many questions unanswered and the need for more concrete action to ensure...

Highlights of the week

22.05.2018 - 25.05.2018
Riga, Latvia

Discussing the European way of life in Riga

European politicians, academics, policy-makers and opinion-shapers will gather in Riga, Latvia, from 23-25 May at the annual conference of the...
Facebook

Mark Zuckerberg to meet EP leaders

An extraordinary meeting with the Chief Executive Officer of Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg, will take place on Tuesday in the European Parliament. The...
High angle view of traffic on highway

Road charges: fair charging for better roads

The Transport and Tourism Committee will vote on Thursday morning on the phasing-out of the Eurovignette for heavy duty vehicles and vans....