The Conference of European Churches (CEC) and the Commission of the Bishops’ Conferences of the European Union (COMECE) addressed a letter to the newly appointed members of the Executive Board of the Conference on the Future of Europe on 8 April 2021, advocating for the integration of churches in the Conference Plenary as distinct key stakeholders, in line with Article 17 TFEU, according to which the EU maintains an open, transparent and regular dialogue with churches and religious associations.
In the letter, Fr. Manuel Barrios Prieto and Dr Jørgen Skov Sørensen, respective general secretaries of COMECE and CEC, stressed that churches, alongside other stakeholders, are able to provide significant inputs to the discussion about the future of Europe.
Strongly committed to further developing the European project on the basis of the Christian ideals of justice, peace and the integrity of creation, COMECE and CEC highlighted the need to continuously strengthen our common European values “in order to reaffirm commitment to the vision of the EU as a true community of values that contribute to a peaceful, prosperous, free, just, inclusive and sustainable Europe for all”.
In this context, COMECE and CEC emphasised their willingness and preparedness to contribute to the Conference. “Churches have an important message and value to add to the Conference on the Future of Europe – the letter reads – “for example arranging discussions with special focus on values, sustainability and social justice, particularly involving young people […] at the regional and national levels”.
Together, COMECE and CEC represent churches in which around 380 million European citizens in all EU Member States are members.