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Dialogue-seminar on religion and liberal democracy in the EP


A dialogue-seminar on the relation between religion and liberal democracy in the current European context took place in the European Parliament, in Brussels, on 24 January 2023. The event was hosted by First Vice-President of the European Parliament, Othmar Karas, who is also responsible for the dialogue with religious and philosophical organisations in Europe. It was attended by MEPs, EU officials, Church representatives and scholars in an attempt to discern the role of Churches and religion in sustaining and nurturing a democratic society.

EU Special Envoy for FoRB, Frans van Daele and Catalin Raiu

The Committee of Representatives of Orthodox Churches to the EU (CROCEU) was represented by Catalin Raiu, Lecturer in Politics and Administrative Science at the University of Bucharest. In his intervention, Mr. Raiu talked about a certain trend of politicisation of religious life over the past few years, in Europe and beyond, especially by way of an attempt by some governments to relate to religious communities according to their own political agenda and objectives, and less so in line with the principles of freedom of religion or belief.

In this context, Raiu argued for the necessity of the EU to further more enhance the dialogue with Churches and religious organisations, as fundamental parts of civil society: "This dialogue should not only remain in its diplomatic or academic format, but have proper results in public policies, creating different platforms of formal dialogue and practical guidelines for the use of public officials, the media, faith-based organisations and civil society. Religious organisations are playing a vital role of any democratic regime, as genuine parts of civil society, and we can only bring civil society together again, by using the same language of Human Rights and FoRB, for the benefit of democracy in a more united Europe."




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