THERE IS NO ST. JOHN PAUL II WITHOUT THE CROSS
In the Senate there was created Parliamentary Group of Pioneers of Ideas of Robert Schuman, a candidate for beatification, considered as one of the fathers the founders of the European Union. Because the Catholic Weekly ‘Sunday’ promotes the ‘Europa Christi’ movement, and the Senate team would like to join this movement, I would like to quote a special statement of senators addressed to the authorities of France about maintaining the process of uniting Europe nations in the spirit of Christian values, and it is not going to be possible without maintaining the cross at the monument of St. John Paul II in Ploermel in Brittany in the west of France.
As senators, we referred to the Christian history and culture which we share with the French, to great people, which connect our nations – among the others: Fryderyk Chopin, Maria Skłodowska-Curie, Robert Schuman and John Paul II. A particular feature common for these people was a great ability to build relations among people, bringing hearts of the nations of France and Poland close to each other.
Robert Schuman, a great Frenchman, experienced suffering in his small homeland Lotaryngia which had been on the border for nearly 10 centuries, moving from ‘hands to hands’ – belonging to Germany and France alternately. The similar thing was experienced by Poland. during the partitions and captivity of Poland, France gave refuge to many Poles who became good citizens of France and promoters of culture, science, Christian values, care about human dignity. It was Christianity which emphasized equality of all people regardless of their belonging to social or racial classes and popularized, according to the rule of St. Benedict ‘ora et labora’, morality of work assuming that a duty of doing work becomes serving for the sake of God’s work of creation’ -wrote Robert Schuman. What is interesting, the Polish Pope, before he became a saint, had similar sufferings of the cruel war as Schuman, and later was persecuted by the communist regime, which did not use to place the man on the way of building inter-human relations, but an ideology, capital or a political party. Therefore when we make conclusions from history, we cannot remove human values from the space of building a good quality of life of societies and nations.
It is thanks to John Paul II who appealed like Schuman for reconciliation, that there was a peaceful change of the communist system in the eastern bloc into free nations. The community of peoples in solidarity, freedom, justice and peace is born from conciliation. Let’s stretch out our hand to our yesterday’s enemies not only to reconcile with them but also to build Europe of tomorrow together’ – said Schuman.
Biographers, comparing Schuman to John Paul II, point to their three similar features: aiming at peace, loving the man, a contemplative style full of reflection and seriousness, and concentrating on the man who has got the supreme dignity among all creations regardless of everything. Agreeing to what most important role in history of Europe and our both nations those great people St. John Paul II and the God’s servant Robert Schuman played, one cannot separate them from the fruits they brought through their contribution for the sake of unity, solidarity and peace in Europe, from their attributes and values, which they used. John Paul II used God’s power and Christ’s cross. Regardless of whether somebody believes it or not, one cannot imagine John Paul II without the cross. Removing the cross from life of Karol Wojtyła, we would not have John Paul II and we would not have these fruits which he brought to Europe.
In relation to it, in the name of this great value which is the human being, senators ask all authorities in France, the French brothers, and their representatives in Poland to maintain a full image of human identity, which was and is St. John Paul II, that is, the man with the cross, as it would not be the same without the cross.
Ending the senator’s statement, there was a particular appeal: ‘As followers of the great son of France Robert Schuman and propagators of his ideas which brought a miracle of reconciliation between France and Germany after the war, we ask our French brothers: do not deprive John Paul II of the cross’.