this year Let's celebrate

Europe Day, Interdependence day!

When we stop to think about it...

We love

Italian pizzas, German cars, Swedish furniture, French cuisine, Swiss chocolate, Belgian beers, Dutch cheeses, Norwegian salmon, Irish rock bands, British detectives...

We like

Spain's beaches, Scotland's lochs,
Austria's ski slopes, Croatia's coastline, Norway's fjords,  Finland's saunas  & Hungary's baths...

We enjoy

       Wimbledon,       Champions League,
Tour de France, Eurovision, 
Six Nations rugby,  Europe's festivals...

We admire

Europe's 
 art & music, 
castles
& cathedrals,
museums
& palaces,
rivers & lakes, mountains
& valleys...

We appreciate

Europe's
spiritual heritage,
stable democracy, 
& values of equality, freedom, dignity, rule of law
& human rights...

We benefit from

Europe's
high-speed trains,  motorway system, air travel network
& open borders...

We are enriched by the diversity of Europe

So why shouldn’t we celebrate our connectedness?

Most nations their celebrate national identity on special days:
France on Bastille Day,
• Germany on Unification Day,

• The Netherlands on Koningsdag,

Switzerland on August 1,
• Finland on December 6,
etc.       

Nations, like people, need both
autonomy
and connectedness.
As people, we are relational beings.
We belong to something bigger:
a family, a community, a nation.
So too in Europe, our nations are part
of the European family
or community of nations.

Too often we take this for granted. Sometimes we are tempted to choose for 'me first', 'my country first'.

But we are better people
when we consider others first
and better nations
when we pursue the common good.

So why not a day to celebrate our connectedness?
A day to savour the richness of our region in history, culture and scenery?
A day to reflect gratefully about belonging to the European family?

Actually, there is already such a day!

That day is May 9,
Europe Day!

Why May 9?

That’s a long story.

It’s the day when, in 1950, a Frenchman named Robert Schuman proposed that Europe would be a better place if nations would work together for the good of the whole.

He called this ‘the spirit of Europe’.

Europe, he proposed, should become a community of peoples united in values of equality, freedom, solidarity and peace.


His proposal kicked off the European Union as we know it today.

Which is why May 9 has been officially declared ‘Europe Day’ (still a best-kept secret in some countries).

But the extended family of European peoples embraces all of Europe.

Today our lives are connected in 1001 different ways, despite our national distinctions and even today’s nationalistic movements.

We’ve become irreversibly interdependent and connected,
enriched through our diversity.

So, let’s celebrate!

But how?
There are 1001 possibilities.
Here are some to get you started.
As we’re celebrating connectedness, its best done with others!
Invite your friends to discuss how you want to celebrate May 9.

You have selected:

Pizza

Dinner

Set up a wine and cheese evening, coordinating friends to bring products from different European countries. Discuss: What top three places do you want to visit in Europe? Why? What are your favourite cheeses? From where?

Email again:
Will celebrate