From Pat. Kirill’s message to the Conference on the Identity of Values for Europe held on November 19-10, 2009, in Venice.
The further existence and fruitful development of the European project depends on a clear answer to the question of the European identity. It is necessary to understand what exactly constitutes the backbone and uniting principle for the numerous peoples living in the continent. Only in this way it is possible to overcome their cultural differences and to inspire them for building a common space of mutual trust and aid.
Christianity has formed Europe’s values basis and idea. Outside the Christian tradition it is impossible to become aware of the inner contents and driving mechanism of the development of this region and the cultural code of the ethnoses inhabiting it. Therefore, in future, too, every stage in the building of our common home cannot be reached without reliance on the Christian witness. Europe’s Christian identity is an immutable given which cannot be destroyed without destroying the European world itself.