This year, a historical task has been put before European countries: defending Christian culture, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán said in an interview published in Saturday’s issue of daily Magyar Idők.
“We Europeans — with or without confessing it, with or without being conscious of it — live in a culture that is structured by the teachings of Christ,” Orbán said.
The Hungarians have every right to see themselves as a Christian nation, he said, adding that “the fact we were Christian and our living faith kept us in the centre of Europe over a millennium”.
Many people try to criticise us when they hear that people who profess to be Christian don’t let people from other parts of the world emigrate to Europe, he said. However, Christ’s command to “love your neighbour as yourself” also means to “undertake and preserve all that we are and who we are”, he added.
Europeans regard Christian culture as a source of pride and strength; Christian culture defines their everyday values, Orbán said.
“It defines our perceptions of the nature of justice and injustice, of the relationship between man and woman, of the family, of success, of work and of honour,” he added.
Regardless of whether or not we go to church, or, if we do, to which one, “we don’t want to have to celebrate Christmas Eve behind drawn curtains to avoid offending somebody’s sensibilities”, Orbán said. “We don’t want our Christmas markets to be renamed, and we certainly don’t want to have to put them behind concrete barriers. We don’t want to deprive our children of the joy of Saint Nicholas and of gift-giving traditions,” he added.
“Our way of life, our fundamental worldview is coming under a targeted attack. Europe’s immune system is being intentionally weakened. They want us to be those whom we are not,” he said. “They want to take away our way of life and exchange it for something that is not our way of life,” he added.
One hears more and more frequently that the European Union‘s founders “marked the way” sixty years ago, Orbán said, quoting the former foreign minister and prime minister of France Robert Schuman:
“Europe shall be Christian, or shall cease to be”.
“A historical task has been put before European countries in 2017. The free nations of Europe, the national governments elected by their free citizens have a new task: they must defend Christian culture,” he said.
“Our starting point was always that we have the right to live our own lives. And when we had the strength, we defended this right. That’s why for years we have been working to make Hungary stronger and put it back on its own feet,” he added.
Orbán said that as long as his government is in power, it would work to keep Hungary Christian and Hungarian, as well as do everything possible to keep Europe European.