mardi 21 décembre 2010

Europe: Christians ignored in school diary

The European Commission has brought out more than 3 million copies of a school diary that includes festivities of Hindus, Sikhs, Muslims and Jews but contains no reference to Christmas, angering the Christian community.

More than 330,000 copies of the diaries, costing 4.7 million pounds to produce and are accompanied by 51 pages of information about the EU, have been delivered to British schools as a Christmas gift to pupils from the commission, according to a report in The Daily Telegraph.

But Christians have been angered because the diary section for December 25 (Christmas) is blank and the bottom of the page bears the message: "A true friend is someone who shares your concerns and will double your joy."

The diary marks Hindu, Sikh, Jewish, Islamic and Chinese festivities as well as Europe day and other key EU anniversaries.

But there are no Christian festivals marked, even though Christianity is Europe's majority religion.

Johanna Touzel, of the Catholic Commission of the Bishops' Conferences of the European Community, said the absence of Christian festivals was "astonishing".

"Christmas and Easter are important feasts for hundreds of millions of Christians and Europeans," she said.

A Commission spokesman said the oversight was a "blunder".

He said future editions might omit all references to religious festivals.
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