Closing Event of the Conference on the Future of Europe

The Conference on the Future of Europe ended on 9 May with a festive session at the headquarters of the European Parliament in Strasbourg. The day of 9 May is recognized as ‘Europe Day’, or rather ‘European Union Day’, and marks the anniversary the historical moment in 1950 represented by the ‘Schuman Declaration’, which proposed a new form of political cooperation that would bring peace and prosperity.

The Conference on the Future of Europe was a wide-ranging consultation, a fascinating operation in involving European citizens in shaping the future of the European Union, which took place over the course of a year all over the EU. However, it should also be taken into account that this consultation coincided with two major crises which hit Europe: the coronavirus pandemic and the war in Ukraine.

More than 300 concrete actions and almost 50 proposals have been outlined in the last months following the citizens’ contributions. These contributions have been summarized and solemnly handed over as a final report to the President of the European Parliament, Ms. Roberta Metsola, the President of the European Commission, Ms. Ursula von der Leyen, and the President of the French Republic, Mr. Emmanuel Macron, for the Council of the European Union, at the closing event of the conference on May 9, 2022.

Fr Sorin Selaru, Director of the Representation Office of the Romanian Patriarchate in Brussels, participated to this event on behalf of CROCEU. The Orthodox Church tried to be present during the consultations and to bring its specific contribution to the shaping of the future of the European Union. After the insightful experience gained during this year of pan-European consultation, we now look forward to seeing how the European institutions and policy makers will take them into account.

Both the selected proposals and the emphases given by the Presidents present at the event on 9 May indicate a desire to reform the Union by making it stronger and more efficient. This effort involves changing the current Treatises, a rather bold initiative, considering the reluctance of many European countries to revise them.

We hope that this forecasted reorganization will be respectful to the concrete needs of the European citizens and will find new, effective, and realistic solutions, focused on the human person and its dignity, and also to the multiple challenges facing European society today.

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