Europe suffering from chronic lack of hope, bishop warns
Madrid, Nov 24, 2008 / 04:40 pm (CNA).- The secretary general of the Bishops’ Conference of Spain, Bishop Juan Antonio Martinez Camino, warned this week that European society “has made science almighty, it has made progress a substitute for salvation and suffers a chronic lack of hope, where the culture of death gains ground everyday on the culture of life.”
During his speech at the Tenth Congress on Catholics and Public Life, the bishop underscored that in response to this reality in Europe, Christian hope is needed for a future that has lost its value and seems to have renounced the protection of human life and of man in the face of the culture of death.
Religious action in the public sphere is an immunization against the totalitarian temptation to view man as merely part of the social machinery. “Prayer is an exorcism against society monopolizing life and turning it into a beehive. Society is not the horizon for human life, but rather a means for life to be realized according to God’s plan,” he said.
For this reason, the bishop continued, things such as prayer, churches and crucifixes rejuvenate public life, because they “show man what his meaning is.” The lack of hope, he said, is the result of “this dominant culture that seeks to substitute the God of hope with the idol of progress.”