Areas of work
CCEE is at the service of the Church in Europe to promote collaboration and effective communion between the Continent’s bishops and Bishops’ Conferences. CCEE is committed to New Evangelisation and offers its own support in all areas where the Church is involved in this mission. Through its service, CCEE brings together all the representatives of the Church in Europe and encourages all initiatives aimed at witnessing the faith and truth of the Gospel throughout the Continent in order to reach to and embrace the people and communities present in Europe.
Issues pertaining to education such as catechesis, school and university ministry; youth pastoral care; social challenges; safeguarding creation; the pastoral care of migrants; communication ad intra and ad extra; vocations; the promotion of the family and a culture of life; ecumenism and relations with other protagonists in European social life and inter-religious dialogue are among the main areas of CCEE’s work.
The ministry of bishops follows the mission of the apostles - to announce Jesus Christ to the whole world - and to witness the love of God to everyone. That is why along with other international and European institutions CCEE actively participates in the various social and ecclesial fields in order to promote respect for human rights founded on an anthropology which recognizes the dignity of the person created in the image and likeness of God. CCEE carefully follows issues of religious freedom, the defence of the family and life from conception to natural death, freedom of education and the protection of the weakest, to promote the common good, justice and peace.
The history of the European Continent has always been linked to that of the African Continent.
Bishops are those mainly responsible for the teaching of faith. Catechesis is one of the most important dimensions of the mission of bishops. To keep faith alive and to be able to give answers to all those who ask why we believe in God’s presence and mercy.
Looking for the unity of the Church by promoting meetings and developing friendships among people from other Christian denominations is a beautiful and urgent area of work. Working close with CEC (Conference of European Churches) and with the Orthodox Churches is an ongoing process which CCEE has been engaged in since its beginnings.
Faith and Charity
The relationship between faith, charity and evangelisation; the role of the bishops and the faithful, as main protagonists in the pastoral work of charity which goes beyond the response to an immediate need, but offers above all a welcoming community in which lies a testimony to faith in that Jesus who was born poor for the poor..
The family is the basic unit of Society and the Catholic Church has good news for the family. However this area is subject to many challenges, especially in Europe.
The situation of Christians in Holy Land is a matter of concern for Bishops and the entire Church in Europe, as is the situation of the Christians of Middle East. Europe is not only historically connected to the Cradle of Christianity, but is also profoundly united to that region today.
The ongoing wave of migrations along with the progressive multi-cultural nature of European society make a permanent and intense dialogue with the representatives of other religions necessary.
A Europe of rights has become in the last decades more and more important in the life of each single country and of each Bishops’ Conference of the Continent.
The issue of migration has been on the agenda of the Churches in Europe for a number of years. A great number of meetings have been held in order to compare experiences, inform Christian communities and appeal both to the public opinion and politicians.
Religious Education in schools - Catholic and State-owned - represents a very important item in the mission of the Church and in building a stronger European multiculturality.
CCEE is conscious of the situation of Christians in Europe and the need to defend the moral and ethical values which are at the root of our culture. Through various meetings CCEE promotes a profound reflection on the situation of these Christians and the need to enhance the presence of religion in the public sphere.
Pastoral care in schools, the teaching of Catholic religion and Catholic schools represent a very rich expression – albeit a diverse one – of a great tradition. A Specific Section of the Commission ´Catechesis, School and University´ deals with these questions.
Social Communications is a mean to build bridges and strengthen relations between people and communities. It is also a decisive element of our culture to which the Church is very attentive so as to contribute to the reflection on how life is changing but also to encourage the constructive use of the various media.
Social pastoral care of the Church is probably what identifies the Church most for the majority of European citizens. The social dimension of the work of the Church inspired by her social doctrine is in fact part of her mission to proclaim the Gospel throughout the world. It’s a question of evangelisation.
The Safeguard of Creation
Environmental issues seen according to Christian faith and the mission God entrusted to mankind as steward of all His creation, have been on the agenda of the Churches in Europe for a number of years.
CCEE has a specific section of the Commission “Catechesis, School and University” dedicated to pastoral care in Universities; Dialogue between faith and reason and the roots of our culture.
A network of the national directors or centres for Vocations of special consecration has been in existence since 1999 (European Vocations Service - EVS) and became a commission of CCEE in 2006. Since 2012 it is known in CCEE as Commission for Vocations.
Catholic Eastern Rite Churches
Within the Catholic Church there are particular Churches called sui iuris Churches or Rites. These are in full communion with the Church of Rome but distinguished from the Latin Catholic Church by their different forms of liturgical worship and popular devotion, sacramental (administration of the sacraments) and canonical (juridical norms) disciplines, terminology and theological traditions.
The Church in Europe has the task of announcing Jesus Christ to Young People and offering them not only answers to their questions about existence, but also places where to meet People of faith and to experience the life in abundance Christ has won for us.