Sarkozy met for twenty-five minutes with Benedict XVI and the Holy See’s secretary of state. One of the first things he said to them was that the Church in France has “to be more courageous” in intervening publicly because the French Republic has need of people of faith. This was already quite daring, but he did not stop there. Remarkably, in both events, Sarkozy openly expressed his agreement with the pope’s view that a Europe without faith is a Europe without hope—and maybe without a future. And, perhaps even more notably, he made a powerful case that the present and future depend on a more inclusive embrace of the past.
He started out by reminding his listeners that [. ...] Christianity helped create France, and France helped Christianize Europe.
For him [Sarkozy], French culture should be more open to all the wisdom available in the various religious traditions of his people. He put this forward with all due respect for the nonbelievers in France but also with a breadth of spirit that made the old claims of a rigidly secularist public order as the only guarantor of liberty for all citizens look decidedly illiberal. [Emphases added.]
Friday, January 04, 2008
Sarkozy and Spiritual Recalibration?
"Sarkozy and Secularism" (by Robert Royal) is an interesting take on what might be going on in France and some parts of Europe.
In Rome on December 20,
Posted by W. at 5:08 PM