The European Commission has withdrawn internal communication guidelines which proposed to substitute the “Christmas period” with “holiday period” after an outcry from the Conservatives
ROME – The European Commission on Tuesday withdrew internal communications guidelines that had proposed replacing “Christmas time” with “holiday period” after an outcry from conservatives and the Vatican, which called the document an attempt “to cancel “the Christian roots of Europe.
European Equality Commissioner Helena Dalli said the draft document aimed to highlight European diversity and highlight the “inclusive nature of the European Commission”. But in a statement, she said it fell short of Commission standards and failed to meet its stated goal.
“The guidelines clearly need more work,” she said, adding that a revised document would take into account the concerns that had been raised.
Even Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Pietro Parolin intervened with unusually sharp criticism in a video Tuesday on the Vatican News portal. Parolin praised the efforts to eradicate discrimination in the bloc but said the initiatives cannot involve “the cancellation of our roots, the Christian dimension of our Europe, especially with regard to Christian holidays.
“Of course, we know that Europe owes its existence and identity to many influences, but we certainly cannot forget that one of the main influences, if not the main one, has been Christianity itself”, said he declared.
Antonio Tajani of the center-right Italian party Forza Italia and the chairman of the European Parliament’s Committee on Constitutional Affairs welcomed the withdrawal of the directives.