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EU cancels Christmas, sparking MEPs' protest

Thursday, 20th January 2011

Roger Helmer, an East Midlands Conservative MEP, has voiced his outrage at the EU Commission's decision to distribute 3 million diaries featuring the feast days of many faiths, but with no reference to Christmas -- or any other Christian festival. The diaries have been sent as a "gift" from the Commission to young citizens in schools across Europe. Information accompanying the diary details facts about the EU, and also the festivals of Islam, Sikhism and Hinduism -- but no Christmas or Easter. But predictably, ‘Europe Day’ on May 9 also gets a mention.

The reported cost of the EU diaries is £4.4m of taxpayers’ money. A majority of EU citizens class themselves as Christians of varying denominations.

Mr. Helmer has joined with other MEPs in the parliament to co-sign a "Written Question" to the Commission, demanding an explanation, and calling on it to withdraw these diaries which fail to respect Europe's cultural heritage, and to take steps that no such mistakes occur again.

Commenting from Strasbourg, Mr. Helmer said:

“The key role of Christianity in Europe's history and culture is an undeniable and historical fact. Christian holidays, in particular Christmas and Easter, which are absent in this diary, are celebrated throughout all Europe by most citizens, even including many who would not class themselves as Christians at all. It is simply scandalous that all Christian references were omitted from this publication. I personally doubt whether the omission was intentional, but it seems to reveal an instinctive anti-Christian, pro-minority-religion bias in the institution”