ADVERTISING
 
Friday, September 21   Sign in or Register
 
Evangelical Focus
 
Flecha
 
ADVERTISING
 
 
FOLLOW US ON
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • Google +
  • Instagram
  • Soundcloud
 

Newsletter
Newsletter, sign up to receive all our News by email.
 
 

POLL
Faith and political views
In my church...




SEE MORE POLLS
 

 
TOP 10 MOST VIEWED



Identity
 

Evangelical Christians should “encourage public debate” about a European refoundation

The increase in diplomatic tensions between France and Italy reopen the debate about the future of the European Union. “Our ties are found in Christ and are so much stronger than these political games”, says the Italian Evangelical Alliance.

AUTHOR Jonatán Soriano TRANSLATOR Aislinn Duffy ROME 11 JULY 2018 12:34 h GMT+1
A ivew of the Tower of Pisa, in Italy. / D. Ragusa (Unsplash, CC0)

The border between France and Italy remains closed since 2015, resulting in the Italian locality of Ventimiglia becoming a settlement for migrants and refugees, unable to advance further.



The relationship between these countries has deteriorated due to the opposing viewpoints concerning political migrants in Europe, reaching breaking point over the ‘Aquarius’ case. The 629 people on board the boat run by French NGO SOS Mediterranée was unable to dock in Italy after the refusal given by Matteo Salvini, Minister of the Interior. The Spanish government finally offered the port of Valencia and special 30 day residence permits were given to the migrants. The President of France, Emmanuel Macron, accused the Italian executive of cynicism and irresponsibility.



Since then the war of words has been a constant exchange of heated statements and is evidence of increasing distancing between these countries. Not long after Macron’s words, Salvini demanded an apology from the French president and assured that “Italy is the second country in the world for migrants” and that they “don’t need lessons from anyone on generosity and solidarity.”



Political manoeuvres. It is easy to blame others rather than facing reality responsibly”, considers the Vice President of the Italian Evangelical Alliance, Leonardo de Chirico. “The whole problem of migration has been politicalised. Everything that this said is filtered through political lenses and party lines, rather than being evaluated with reliable data and a Christian worldview. It is now hard to talk about this topic reasonably, and this is not helpful. On the one hand they are calling to Europe for help, while on the other there now doesn’t exist an European vision”, he remarks.



 



AN ANTICIPATED CRISIS?



The United Kingdom leaving the European Union, in part due to the migration question and political borders, as well as the recent disagreement between Angela Merkel, the Chancellor of Germany, and her Minister of the Interior, Horst Seehofer, who threatened to resign if the management of migration movements was not addressed, are two of various examples that show the growing need of dialogue about the future of the continent.



The case of France and Italy is no different. The disagreement between the two executives reflects the tensions and internal conflicts within the European Union. On the one hand, Macron represents a pro-European and neoliberal attitude, although his proposals on migration have not triumphed. In the wake of the ‘Aquarius’ episode, he showed to be a supporter of sanctioning those countries who refused to accept the migrants. On the other hand, Italy, with the new anti-establishment Five Star Movement and the xenophobe Liga, the picture of Euroscepticism and with an electoral mortgage of driving out 500,000 people from the country, is partisan to localised migration management in home countries, mainly in the south of Libya, with the opening of centres there.



“The overriding question that no one, including evangelical Christians, is asking today is what type of Europe do we want to be. Exclusively a free trade zone? And therefore each country deals with immigration by themselves. Or do we want Europe to be a federation of states? If this is it, immigration becomes a state problem, something that we deal with together”, states Chirico, reaffirming the need of a discussion about the future of the continent.



“Politicians play with Europe. Sometimes they are favourable to the EU and then other times they use nationalist grievances against it. I think that evangelicals in Europe need to encourage a public debate about the future of the continent. This is also key for the migration question,” he reiterates.



 



AN EXAMPLE OF UNITY



The National Council of Evangelicals in France (CNEF) confirm that they maintain “good relationships with evangelicals in Italy, especially through the European Evangelical Alliance and joint projects such as the worldwide Week of Prayer in January”.



“Our ties are found in Christ and are much stronger than these political games”, Chirico defends, after the rising tension between the governments of these two countries.



The Italian Evangelical Alliance also calls for greater participation from the evangelical public. “Evangelicals tend to interact with governments according to previously determined political tendencies, rather than from a Christian perspective”, says Chirico. He also explains that “they are still working to construct an evangelical Christian approach towards both the public life and government”.



This is challenging when considering how neither the Five Star Movement nor the Lega have shown any interest in minority religions, according to Chirico . He explains that this is due to being new in politics and the tradition of “adopting the Catholic culture as a strong identity mark against minorities”.



“With the new government there has been a significant change in political representation and therefore the challenge that we have before us is to build a respectful relationship”, he points out.


 

 


0
COMMENTS

    If you want to comment, or

 



 
 
YOUR ARE AT: - - Evangelical Christians should “encourage public debate” about a European refoundation
 
ADVERTISING
 
 
 
AUDIOS Audios
 
Nominal Christianity, a mission field for the church Nominal Christianity, a mission field for the church

An interview with Lars Dahle, of the Steering Committee of the Lausanne Movement Global Consultation on Nominal Christianity held in Rome.

 
Ruth Valerio: A lifestyle that cares about creation Ruth Valerio: A lifestyle that cares about creation

Are Christians called to make a difference in environmental care? What has creation care to do with "loving our neighbours"? An interview with the Global Advocacy and Influencing Director of Tearfund.

 
Kathy Bryan: Online sex trafficking in the USA Kathy Bryan: Online sex trafficking in the USA

“Prostitution is nobody’s dream,  it’s a very traumatic lifestyle”, says Kathy Bryan, director of the Elevate Academy. She mentors former victims.

 
Christians in politics? Christians in politics?

What is the role of Christians serving in politics? An interview with Auke Minnema, the new General Director of the European Christian Political Movement (ECPM).

 
Michael Ramsden: Communicating the Gospel in today’s societies Michael Ramsden: Communicating the Gospel in today’s societies

RZIM International Director Michael Ramsden responds to questions about the secularisation of Europe, the role of Christians in public leadership and the new ‘culture of victimism’.

 
PICTURES Pictures
 
Sharing Jesus with World Cup fans in Moscow Sharing Jesus with World Cup fans in Moscow

A team of Steiger mission is starting conversations about the gospel in the middst of the football celebration in Russia.

 
Analysing current issues in the light of the Bible Analysing current issues in the light of the Bible

At the 2018 Apologetics Forum in Comarruga (Spain), Michael Ramsden, Pablo Martinez, Ruth Valerio and José de Segovia analysed how society and the Bible approach the issues of personal identity, integrity, sexuality, pop culture, and environmental care.

 
European “Bridges to Inclusion” gathering 2018, in Riga European “Bridges to Inclusion” gathering 2018, in Riga

The network of Christian ministries working for the inclusion of people with disabilities, celebrated its tenth continental meeting in Latvia with the participation of 12 countries.

 

 
VIDEO Video
 
How does romantic love change over time? How does romantic love change over time?

Psychatrist Pablo Martínez uses a metaphor to explain how romantic love evolves.

 
‘Mediterráneo’ ‘Mediterráneo’

“Something will change if you have hunger and thirst for justice”, sings Spanish artist Eva Betoret in a song about the refugee crisis.

 
How the loss of universal values led to a loss of civility How the loss of universal values led to a loss of civility

Author Bruce Little: “We have moved from a sense of responsibility to ‘my personal rights’”.

 
Reaching non-Christian ‘Christians’ Reaching non-Christian ‘Christians’

How can we reach those who call themselves ‘Christians’ but have not experienced a conversion to Christ? Forty missiologists and mission practitioners came together for a Lausanne Movement global consultation in Rome.

 
 
Follow us on Soundcloud
Follow us on YouTube
 
 
WE RECOMMEND
 
PARTNERS
 

 
AEE
EVANGELICAL FOCUS belongs to Areópago Protestante, linked to the Spanish Evangelical Alliance (AEE). AEE is member of the European
Evangelical Alliance and World Evangelical Alliance.
 

Opinions expressed are those of their respective contributors and do not necessarily represent the views of Evangelical Focus.