2018. 10. 26.
Press release by György Hölvényi
“During the 2014 term of the European Parliament, the European People’s Party was fully supported in their action to raise awareness of the work done in the areas of humanitarian and social activities by churches and religious communities, highlighting their valuable contribution to European decision-makers,” said György Hölvényi, co-chairman of the EPP Group’s Working Group on Intercultural Activities and Religious Dialogue, during the annual inter-religious dialogue event October 18-19, in Mafra, Portugal.
“The European People’s Party is the only political group in the European Parliament (EP) that has maintained a personal and structured dialogue with representatives of churches for decades, and the weight of the topic was not recognized by any other political party in Europe,” said György Hölvényi, Christian Democrat MEP. According to Hölvényi, it is a vital task for the EP in the future to take action against the extremely secular approach of European institutions and the general indifference towards churches in general. “Depending on the role they play in society, religious communities should be involved in the EU’s support programs worldwide. The credibility of the European People’s Party lies in developing Christian-Democratic responses to the challenges of the 21st century,” the MEP warned.
As co-chairman of the EPP Group’s Working Group on Intercultural Activities and Religious Dialogue, Hölvényi stated that the protection of religious freedoms is one of their most important tasks as a result of a sudden increase in religious persecution since 2014.
In the name of solidarity with persecuted Christians, they have visited suffering Christian communities ten times and enabled 13 Christian Democratic religious leaders from the Middle East and Africa – including patriarchs and leading bishops – to participate in the Brussels negotiations.
Hungary has taken a decisive and committed stance in assisting persecuted Christians and raising awareness of their situation on an international level.
The meeting was attended by Manfred Weber (EPP group leader), Br. Oliver Poquillon OP (General Secretary of the Bishops of the European Union) and Dániel Bodnár (President of the Milton Friedman University). A member of the Unified Israelite Congregation of Hungary also participated along with a number of politicians, Christian, Jewish and Muslim religious leaders.