European News: Easter under the pandemic and Christian persecution
On the 3rd of April, 2021, Hír TV aired the European News item: Easter under the pandemic and Christian persecution. The programme featured Tristan Azbej, State Secretary for the Aid of Persecuted Christians and the Hungary Helps Program and György Hölvényi, MEP of the KDNP.
Tristan Azbej told the reporter that nowadays, the main problem does not come from the attacks against the programs (like Hungary Helps Program) but the anti-Christian sentiments and outright physical abuse. He added that many problems are coming from the extreme liberal idea that Christians are not the persecuted ones but rather that they are persecutors – and the tendency is on the increase.
György Hölvényi talked about the hardships, especially in how hard it is to highlight those shared values that are both Christian and European. He mentioned how difficult it is to mitigate the EU’s negligence with programs like HHP in the eyes of those who think of Europe as their protectors. Even though the Lisbon Treaty has a clause for free expression of religion, these guarantees are weak.
At first, the European populous was stunned by the idea of a vice-state secretariat pushing the idea of helping Christians, said Tristan Azbej. The political reaction was mixed; some saw the idea as a missionary idea, while others disrupted it with remarks, such as: “this is only political, there’s nothing behind it.” The Pope’ visit to Iraq was beneficial because it shed light on the fact that there are persecuted Christians in the Middle East still to this day. In Europe, Poland is the number one ally in this work, but Estonia and Greece also lined up, and in some aspect, there is co-operation with Germany and the Netherlands.
The MEP added that the aid provided to those who need help (Christian and non-Christians alike). In many cases, the claim cannot breach the barrier of world view neutrality, and the HHP opens channels where groups can apply for funds.
“It was never easy to be Christian”- said MEP Hölvényi, but Europe cannot exist without Christianity. Europe will have tough times ahead if it gets rid of its Christian heritage.”
Europe should reinforce its original identity; otherwise, a dominant idea, like political Islamism, will overtake it, said the State Secretary. This is not a religious opposition, rather a political one.
The MEP reflected on the fact that this Easter, as the last one, was different. He emphasised that we should focus on our faith.
The State Secretary pointed out that with such a holiday, there were terror attacks as well, so as a politician, there is more work to be done, and they have to be on standby; if something happens, they can aid the victims.
Source: Hír TV