Defend the Cross - on John Paul II's Monument - in France and across Europe!
Last week, the Supreme Administrative Court in France (the French Council of State) ordered a cross to be removed from the memorial of Pope John Paul II, located in a public square in Brittany, in the village of Ploërmel.
This decision shook the whole of Europe, and not just Catholics.
The eight-meter, bronze memorial statue of John Paul II, with the Gospel words, "Do not be afraid," and an arc with a cross, was to be removed as a result of a lower court decision in Rennes (France), in 2015.
However, on appeal, the French Supreme Court then ruled that the memorial statue of the Pope, which was built in 2006, could remain in place, but that the cross should be removed because they claimed that it is, "an ostentatious religious symbol."
This ruling was made on the basis of the strict French secularism law of 1905.
The statue of Pope John Paul II, who stood at the head of the Catholic Church from 1978 until his death in 2005, was created by the Russian sculptor Zurab Cereteli. And, the artist has said that he is against any intervention which will deform the monument. An arc with a cross is an integral part of the work.
Sadly, after Iraq and Syria, it is in France, which is at the heart of Western Europe, where crosses are now being removed.
But, this case has wider implications for Europe, and "the secularisation of the state" - as described by Poland’s prime minister, Beata Szydło.
Therefore, in a petition addressed to representatives of the main political groups of the European Parliament, the EPP and the ECR, we oppose the removal of the cross from public space, and, at the same time, ask our political leaders to be mindful (and, respect) the Christian roots of Europe.
Please help us prevent such censorship of Christian art in the public square, and support a petition addressed to competent authorities in France and the EU.
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