2008-07-25 13:05:00

The Russian Church urges European Christians to answer Islamic challenges by baby-boom

London, July 25, Interfax - The Moscow Patriarchate urged Christians who are scared of increasing Islamic influence in Europe protect values of traditional family.

"Many Christians fear that Muslims will gradually push them out of Europe as Muslim families have many children, while Christian populations is implacably decreasing," the Russian Orthodox Church representative to the European Institutions Bishop Hilarion of Vienna and Austria said at the Shared mission in Europe hearings in frames of the Lambeth conference of the Church of England in Canterbury.

According to the Bishop, Christian leaders should raise a question: "do we do enough to protect Biblical vision of a family as unbreakable union between man and woman and children as God's blessing?"

Bishop Hilarion believes that the main challenge for Christian mission in Western Europe is militant secularism that strives to push religion off the public sphere.

Among the participants were Primate of the Albanian Orthodox Church Archbishop Anastasy, Metropolitan Ambrosius of Helsinki (the Autonomous Orthodox Church of Finland), head of the Evangelical-Lutheran Church of Finland Archbishop Jukka Paarma, President of the Conference of European Churches Rev. Jean-Arnold de Clermont and the Conference's general secretary Rev. Collin Williams.