“Today, those who lead us no longer have a backbone” says top Cardinal

“Today, those who lead us no longer have a backbone” says top Cardinal Cardinal Jean-Claude Hollerich

Paris/Rome (KNA) For papal adviser and Cardinal Jean-Claude Hollerich, there is no way back to a Christian Europe. Christians are increasingly becoming a minority in Europe today, said the Archbishop of Luxembourg in an interview with the newspaper “La Croix” (Thursday) in Rome. Politically, this has led to a lack of ideas.

Eighty years ago, the construction of Europe was an explicitly Christian project; French Foreign Minister Robert Schuman and Italian Prime Minister Alcide De Gasperi in particular were staunch Catholics. When asked whether there are no more Schumans or Gasperis today, Hollerich said: “To be honest, I don’t see any.” According to the Jesuit, politicians today no longer have any convictions: “They read the polls and adapt their opinions accordingly.” This is a big mistake, both at national and European level. Hollerich: “The political dispute has faded into the background. Today, those who lead us no longer have a backbone.”

At the same time, the cardinal, who represents Europe on Pope Francis’ Council of Cardinals, emphasises: “If I had to choose between an imperfect Europe or its absence, I would always opt for the European Union.”

It is by no means the case that the only possible European ideals are Christian ones, said Hollerich. There are ideals today that are held by a large part of the population, for example in the area of ecology. It was simply a necessity to save humanity.

Christianity had once shaped Europe’s history. But, according to the Cardinal, “if it uses this power to say that we have to go backwards, nobody will be interested anymore”. The European project today must consist of working together to ensure justice, peace and ecological fairness. “We have to stop this madness of climate change, which will kill as many people as war.”