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Cardinal Schönborn clarifies: European squander culture; Islamists exploit weakness

September 15, 2016

Vienna's Cardinal Christoph Schönborn has issued a statement denying that he warned against a Muslim drive to conquer Europe.

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In a Sunday homily that drew worldwide attention, the Austrian cardinal had spoken of a possible "Islamic conquest of Europe." But in an explanatory statement he stressed: "Europe's Christian identity is in danger, because we Europeans have squandered it." Muslims, he said, are now prepared to fill a cultural vaccuum. 

Cardinal Schönborn said that his homily had been "misinterpreted on social meda as an attack against Muslims and even as directed against the refugees." In fact, he said, it was a challenge to European Christians to recover their cultural identity.

"It is clear that many Islamists would like to take advantage of our weakness," the cardinal said, "but they are not responsible for it. We are."


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  • Posted by: feedback - Sep. 17, 2016 10:03 AM ET USA

    "Europe's Christian identity is in danger, because we Europeans have squandered it." He should have added there: ...with the help of shepherds who have been feeding themselves rather than their flock.

  • Posted by: Travelling - Sep. 16, 2016 2:05 PM ET USA

    The original Interpretation sounded good.