Fr. Inf. Ireneusz Skubiś talks with Prof. Mirosław Piotrowski about dilemmas connected with work in the European Parliament

FR.INF. IRENEUSZ SKUBIŚ: - I would like to ask about the matter which is slightly astonishing: why did not the Holy Father visit the European Parliament?

PROF. MIROSŁAW PIOTROWSKI: - He might have not been invited, at least I did not hear that the Holy Father had received a formal invitation. But the question will motivate me to ask the chairman Martin Schulz about it in the forum of the European Parliament.

- Pope is the head of the Catholic Church. Over milliard of the Catholics in the world, great history, thousands of priests. In this context, we should ponder on the Christian Democrats originating from Christianity. How would Professor comment on this problem?

- The Catholic Democrats, that is, European People's Party, is a domineering political power and it 'gives away' cards, speaking in the ordinary language, that is, it is making a contact with the second power in size, that is, socialists and they create majority together and share posts with each other. Officially, as Priest mentioned, the European Union is based on Christian roots and here Catholic Democrats are formally the biggest party, but, unfortunately, very little results from it. It is perceived not only by the Catholics in Poland, but also in Germany. There are many publications saying that Catholic Democrats departed from their principles. It is proved by many signals like the issue of the crucifix in the public space. Catholic Democrats did not take any attitude in this matter and they did not take any possibility to discuss about a place of religious symbols in the European public space. I think this is conscious and deliberate. Among the most important documents, Christian accents have been removed. There is a situation that till the present moment none of the fathers founders, Christian democrats of the European Union could become a EU commissioner because they do not meet particular criteria. I recall when Priest, talking here, in the European Parliament, with one high-ranked officials, asked about the EU symbolism. This official stated that 12 stars mean 12 member founders and Priest corrected that it is a reference to the Apocalypse of St. John where it was written that above the head of Mary there appeared a wreath of twelve stars. If somebody looks at a book or encyclopaedia of the European Union, will learn about it.

- Why did Europe go away from faith?

- The term 'Europe' is permanently used in reference to the European Union, although it is not identified with it, for example, geographically. But in most cases, if we say 'Europe' we think: 27 countries of the European Union and those which are joining it. Blessed John Paul II saw Poland kin the structures of the European Union and gave it a task of becoming another lung of Europe. The first lung, which died slightly, needed more oxygen. As I think, John Paul II hoped that Poles would infuse a new spirit here. And, in fact, in the beginning a kind of revival was visible, but referring to Christian values, as young people say, is not trendy today. After all, some fathers founders are candidates for altars - and nothing is said about it, but a completely different ideology is being launched, which is contradictory with Christian faith and normality. People agree on some compromises. Why is it so? I think it results from the deliberate policy of some groups which have a serious influence on the structures of the European Union and on law appearing among the three institutions: European Commission, European Council and European Parliament. The law, which is established in this way, is somehow anonymous, that is, nobody takes responsibility for it. If we wanted to point to somebody responsible for the crisis of values or a financial crisis, we will not find anybody, because neither chief of the European Parliament will admit to it, nor the chief of the European Commission, nor anybody from the European Council. So, we deal with an ambiguous situation - and this is one of the main reasons for which we departed away from principles about which we are talking.

- What philosophy is in the sources of what is happening in Europe?

- I think that it is a modified liberal philosophy. Modified, because it is changing in our eyes. It is being constantly born here, in some groups, which are reflected in the European Parliament. I talked with many colleagues, for example, from a group of Christian Democrats, we are standing on political antipodes but they state that the EU is going to a wrong direction, when considering philosophical rules, perception of the world. One the one hand, most society see grants, that EU gives grants for roads, bridges, etc. but, on the other hand - those colleagues, parliamentarians do not agree to the fact that EU would build a new man for us, that is, it would get standardized anew and would redefine what is obvious. I will remind that a few years ago, in the European Parliament, a brochure appeared entitled: 'A sexually neutral language in the European Parliament', which recommended MPs and employers to avoid the words: Mrs, Ms, Mr, because, in this way there is discrimination of these people. This is an example, how the EU wants to develop: it is aiming at elaborating a new philosophy and creating somehow a new man. And even people who do not agree to it, when there is voting, a leader of their formation tells them to vote 'contre coeur' - against their heart, they are raising hands. And this is very worrying.

- You are touching on an important issue - of the 'gender' ideology, because at the base of what we speak about, is just this ideology. It originates from Hegelianism and Marxism, is an atheistic ideology, is aimed against not only the Christian faith, but also against the Christian civilisation and culture. If the words: 'father', 'mother', 'woman', 'man', family' disappear from the society, there will be a catastrophe of the whole social life and culture. Europe is cutting off its roots, on which it is based, which is clearly seen on the example of demography. Why is it happening so?

- Here we speak about a very dangerous phenomenon which is aimed against civilizational attitudes and, unfortunately, it is being launched also here, in the EU institutions. The 'gender' ideology is formally and informally supported by many people from the EU institutions. How is it happening? The European Parliament acknowledges passing financial means for this kind of actions, and it also support abortion. So, it is, as I think, a phenomenon programmed and supported by particular centres. It is not a coincidence that this ideology is also entering Poland, particular communities, and even Catholic universities. Here, there is nothing to discuss about, but it should be rejected as informal and cutting down our roots, not only the Christian ones, but also the roots of the common sense. For example, the rejection of the terms 'father' and 'mother' is being promoted, and these words are replaced in documents with the terms 'parent A'and 'parent B', so that it would not be possible to define whether it is father or mother. The world turns upside down - but there is one ray of hope. Well, these all novelties and unwise ideas are hindered by the economic crisis. If there was not the economic crisis in the European Union, the gender propaganda with 'religion' built on the basis of an alleged global warming and climate changes would have rolled among us like a roller.

- We visited a room in which a Catholic priest can celebrate the Holy Mass, and a believer of Islam can put a carpet in order to pray. And it is astonishing that a room of prayer is so modest in this big and rich European Union, which is throwing around money everywhere. What does Professor think about it?

- It is really astonishing, that in such enormous buildings, where corridors are a few hundred meters long and 750 MPs have their offices, it is impossible to design one room for a chapel. I do not mean a hall of religious reflections for all religions, but I mean a chapel for the Catholics.
We often recall the words of John Paul II, encouraging us for accession. However, we must remember that Poland was joining a different European Union. English Conservatives, when they were opting for entering of their country into the EU, saw a different political life. At that time they meant, first of all, cooperation of people, joining them together, abolition of the border control and they meant free trade. However, nobody predicted that the EU would want to create a new man and legislation, in which it would redefine basic terms.

- How does Professor evaluate the actions of the Polish group? Do our Euro deputies have any possibilities of communication? Can these people, with whom you are in contact, listen to your advice, voices?

- The European Parliament is functioning on the basis of communication, consultations and agreement. Although it is the only institution whose members are elected in direct elections, its voice is hardly significant in comparison with the voice of the European Commission which is the guardian of treaties and has EU means. But it is not so that the Parliament cannot do anything. Certainly, it can, but it needs the majority. The Lisbon Treaty gave higher prerogatives to the European Parliament. However, when we observe voting in the European Parliament, concerning key issues: world view, religion, attitude to life, abortion, we see that nearly all votes are lost. Poles are quite a big group here, and are in the 6th place, that is, 51 people are from Poland among 750 MPs, but it is necessary to build coalition.
Nearly 9 years ago, Polish euro-deputies decided to establish an informal Polish group, which would be supposed to set issues possible to accept by all Poles, and beneficial for our country, but these issues result only in problems concerning, among the others, worldview or attitude to the conceived life, because there would not be a consensus here.

- What happened with Christian Democrats or with these Christian groups which betrayed the Gospel?

- Christian Democrats are here the biggest group, but the Social-democrats are the second group in size, among which German social-democrats are prevailing. And Martin Schulz, a German social-democrat is the head of the European Parliament. A few years ago, the German professor Georg Strobel published the book 'Party of rose Luxembourg, Lenin and the German social-democratic party', in the subtitle: Communist roots of the German social-democracy'. I talked with my colleagues from Poland, who are in this fraction, and they said that the official form of speaking to one another during a meeting of the group is the phrase: 'comrade'. It explains a lot.
It must also be said clearly that Christian Democrats are not equal among one another. Here Christian Democrats include the Civic Platform and the Polish Peasant Party. In Europe we can observe the whole range of Christian Democratic parties or conservative parties: through centrist to leftist parties, which state that Christ was the first communist. They are departing from their original program so far that not only do not they want to have anything in common with religious symbols, but in fact they affirm socialistic solutions.

- The Church in the West is functioning and there are active priests in it who celebrate the sacraments. The Church is alive even on France, where people went away from faith. Catholic newspapers in France are not bad. So, why doesn't the Church have clout?

- However, I would spread the term 'in the West' to particular EU countries. Priest mentions France and I know a situation in Germany a little, where organization of Catholic laymen is very big, but there are other problems there, for example, can a professor teach Catholic theology at a university, when he criticizes pope openly: ….On the one hand they say ýes' to the tradition of the Church, but on the other hand - they negate it and are strongly criticizing the structure and hierarchy of the church. Another problem is an attitude to religious education at schools or abortion, in vitro, etc. But this Church in the West is deprived of people. For the time being, the Polish church is different in this respect, has its own specifics and I think that it should maintain this specifics if nothing or nobody disturbs it. So, I think that we should take an example of what is good and we should also observe how Churches in particular EU countries are becoming empty. It should make us reflect on the problem in order not to go the same way and not to cause a similar effect.


"Niedziela" 30/2013

Editor: Tygodnik Katolicki "Niedziela", ul. 3 Maja 12, 42-200 Czestochowa, Polska
Editor-in-chief: Fr Jaroslaw Grabowski • E-mail: