In June 2002 was created a European Working Group of Christians of the various countries of Europe ; in March 2006, it was named the ‘Initiative of Christians for Europe’ or, in abbreviated form, IXE.
IXE is committed to pursuing four major objectives :
to give European Christians who wish to convey the social message of the Church an opportunity to meet and to come more productively to terms with their historic and cultural differences ;
to launch a dialogue with society as a whole, and to articulate statements of position with regard to topics of relevance for the future of European society ;
to encourage reflection about the process of European unification, particularly in dialogue with national and European institutions ; and
to help organise events with a European objective on themes of current social relevance.
Generally speaking, the members of IXE are determined to promote a more energetic European awareness in debates at the national level.
During the 1990s, numerous organisations representing the social teachings of Catholicism in Europe came to the conclusion that it was no longer possible to reflect upon or debate social questions or societal problems without situating them in their European context.
Based on these findings, in 1999 the Semaines Sociales de France (SSF) and the Central Committee of German Catholics (ZdK) came together, and in May 2000 they published a manifesto entitled Manifesto for a European Consciousness (available in 8 languages). This was the point of departure of a partnership between the two organisations, a partnership designed to offer an opportunity for Christians of the various countries of Europe to meet. The organisations then convened on several occasions in European cities including Brussels in January 2001 ; Berlin in February 2002 ; Cracow in March 2003 ; Lille in 2004 ; Saarbrucken in 2006, …
A European Working Group was created in June 2002 ; in March 2006, it was named the ‘Initiative of Christians for Europe’ or, in abbreviated form, IXE. An important step by the Group was to draw up a manifesto to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Treaty of Rome in March 2007 ; entitled ‘Rediscovering the Meaning of the European Construction’, the text is available in nine languages.
As of the publication date of this presentation, IXE has members in the following countries : Austria, Belgium, Croatia, France, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg, The Netherlands, Poland, Romania, Slovak Republic, Spain, and Ukraine. The Group also includes an observer from the Commission of the Bishops’ Conferences of the European Community (COMECE).
Zentralkomitee der deutschen Katholiken (ZdK)
Postfach 24 01 41
53154 Bonn / Deutschland
Sigrid Schraml, +49 228 3 82 97 34
Semaines Sociales de France
18 rue Barbès
92128 Montrouge Cedex / France
Tél. : +33 1 74 31 69 00
Fax : +33 1 74 31 60 99
Bernard Chenevez : +33 1 74 07 56 70
Email : contact chez initiative-ixe.eu