Spanish Officials’ Discourse Shows Increasing Hostility Against Christians

Country: Spain

Date of incident: February 29, 2008

The Observatory for the Freedom of Religion and Conscience (OLRC) issued a report quoting “100 reasons to be alert” about the attacks against Christianity by Spanish officials. The author affirms that the increasing hostility against Christians aims to eliminate religious expressions from the public square.

The author of the report, Marcial Cuquerella, quotes Spanish authorities such as president Zapatero supporting a school reform with the motto: “more sports, less religion”; or blaming the Episcopal Conference for the “use of terrorism” during the electoral campaign.The report also cites high raking officials like the Secretary of State, Leire Pajin, who sponsored together with the Spanish Embassy in Lisbon the play “I shit on God”; or the Spanish Socialist Workers' Party (PSOE) long standing member, Josef Borell, who declared that it is necessary to get rid of some “moral and religious considerations”, and raised his voice to promote a “laity inquisition”. The PSOE issued a guideline to identify priests hostile to their politics, and some of its members requested Zapatero to breach the agreements between Spain and the Holy See. Expressions like “the government has put the bishops in place”; and the “government will not accept any religious teaching” have been reported frequently in the media. The Left United party also requested to the Electoral Board to carry an investigation against bishops who have requested Catholics to vote according their conscience and Christian convictions. Sources: