Poland: is the Church losing its place in society?
The abuse scandals and the recent constitutional court ruling on abortion have also sparked a discussion in Poland about the ties between the Catholic Church and politics. The rapid approach of Christmas prompts commentators to reflect on the place of the Church in society and politics today.
Christian ideas in decline
The Catholics are homeless politically, Przewodnik Katolicki comments:
“None of the parties in today's Poland implements the social teachings of the Church. And this is not even because no party wants to. The logic of the modern political system simply doesn't allow for it. And a change for the better is hardly to be expected because Catholics are inspired more by conservatism, liberalism and socialism than by their own ideological tradition - the social teachings of the Church. ... What should Christian Democrats be advocating today? There is inspiration enough in the papal encyclicals, from reforming labour law (the idea of a four-day week), to educational reform (more room for religion in schools), to curbing fake news.”
People have long been turning away
Rzeczpospolita points out that people turning their backs on the Church is by no means a new phenomenon:
“Didn't the crisis of our faith begin much earlier than sociological research seems to indicate? Before the young people started to leave, hadn't their parents also started turning away, expressing this through many small decisions? Didn't Polish Catholicism begin to wobble many years ago when, under the influence of communist decisions, there was a situation where every second woman had an abortion and they managed to convince families that having two children was the best possible solution? ... That would have been the right time to rethink the Church.”