Katharina von Schnurbein, the European Commission’s official responsible for outreach to both religious and secular groups has told The New York Times, “I can assure you that the European Commission is not the Antichrist.” The EU official made this denial in response to Archbishop Zvolensky’s observation, based on his experience of the European Commission, that ‘There is a movement in the European Union that wants total religious neutrality and can’t accept our Christian traditions”.
The New York Times... reports that the European Commission denies the Christian influence on the flag of the European Commission:
‘Even the European Union’s flag — a circle of 12 yellow stars on a blue background — has a coded Christian message. Arsène Heitz, a French Catholic who designed the flag in 1955, drew inspiration from Christian iconography of the Virgin Mary wearing a crown with 12 stars. The same 12 stars appear on all euro coins…The Brussels bureaucracy, in its official account of Mr. Heitz’s religion-tinged flag, ignores the Virgin Mary, stating instead that the 12 stars “symbolize the ideal of unity, solidarity and harmony among the people of Europe.”
Gudrun Kugler, director of the Observatory on Intolerance and Discrimination against Christians, a Vienna-based research and lobbying group commented:“ There is a general suspicion of anything religious, a view that faith should be kept out of the public sphere. There is a very strong current of radical secularism,” she said, adding that this affects all religions but is particularly strong against Christianity because of a view that “Christianity dominated unfairly for centuries” and needs to be put in its place.
Archbishop Zvolensky does see one encouraging sign: Slovakia’s national bank has decided to stick with its original coin design and abandon plans for a halo-free minting in honor of Cyril and Methodius. The European Commission has gone along with this, and the commemorative coins will finally be minted next month — two months later than originally planned — but with halos and crosses.