Cardinal Christoph Schönborn, Archbishop of Vienna, has said that Europe’s Christian legacy is at risk “because we Europeans have squandered it”, not because of Islam.
He made the remark in his archdiocesan newspaper to clarify comments he made in a homily on September 11 that was covered widely by the world’s media.
In his homily at St Stephen’s Cathedral he said: “Will there be a third Islamic attempt to conquer Europe? Many Muslims think this and wish this and say that Europe is at its end.”
Cardinal Schönborn later clarified: “Europe’s Christian legacy is in danger, because we Europeans have squandered it. That has absolutely nothing to do with Islam nor with the refugees. It is clear that many Islamists would like to take advantage of our weakness, but they are not responsible for it. We are.”
The cardinal said his homily was not a “call to defend ourselves against the refugees”.
“The opportunity for a Christian renewal of Europe lies in our hands: if we look at and come to Christ, spread his gospel and deal with our fellow men, strangers included, as he has taught us, in love and responsibility,” the cardinal said.