Europe – Land of the Free
This year’s theme was primarily concerned with freedom, not the least since this year Poland celebrates 100 years of independence. The President of Poland, Andrzej Duda and Vatican Representative Cardinal Peter Turkson, First Prefect of the Dicastery for the Promotion of Integral Human Development, addressed conference participants.
“It is now almost 10 years since we began to come together each year in cities around Russia on the 30th of October for a very special purpose – to offer Prayers for Remembrance. These prayers are intended for the remembrance of the victims of Soviet Repression. The sheer number of such victims is enormous…tens of millions, – reminded the rector of SFI priest Georgy Kochetkov. – If we were to read out all of the victims’ names beginning even with just one letter, it would take more than a whole year”.
The annual conferences in Gniezno are international in their scope, and serve as a space to discuss and make sense of the primary questions of our day, to which Europe must provide answers. Questions about the role of Christianity in the structure of European society as a whole are raised.
More than 500 people from Poland, Germany, Italy, France, Belgium, Holland, Russia, Belarus, Ukraine, Hungary, Slovakia and Ghana, took part. The conference is organized by the St. Wojtiech-Adalbert Fund, assisted by the Centre for the Thought of John Paul II, the UAM Institute for European Culture, the Catholic Information Agency, The Catholic Intellectuals Club in Warsaw, and others. Representatives of 10 different Christian churches took part in organizing the conference.
Conference partners include: The German Roman Catholic Renovabis Fund and the Konrad Adenhauer Fund.