Christians mobilize against the RN

Christians mobilize against the RN

In the soft evening light, seated in a patch of grass parched by the summer sun, around fifteen people pray in silence. However, they are neither on the edge of a path towards Saint-Jacques-de-Compostelle nor in the undergrowth of Taizé, but in the heart of Nantes (Loire-Atlantique). These Christians meet for an evening of exchange and prayer against the extreme right. This evening, they meditate on a passage from the Gospel of Luke inviting us to see clearly within ourselves before condemning anyone… They are responding to the call of three young movements, marked by social Catholicism.

On June 9, in the night of astonishment following the announcement of the dissolution, the members of one of them, the anti-capitalist collective Anastasis, left a meeting. “Stunned and outraged”, they contacted their friends from Lutte et Contemplation, a small group born in September 2023 and engaged in ecological and social struggles. They also signal to the members of the associative café Le Dorothy, established in Paris for seven years. “We understood that the National Rally (RN) could take power. Our morale was low and we first started to pray,” says Camille, 23, a member of the piloting team.

Immediately, on phones and computers, video meetings followed one another; on the social network WhatsApp, discussion “loops” were buzzing. A first meeting took place the next day, which brought together around forty people. These young activists, mostly aged 25 to 35, shared struggles – particularly since the encyclical Laudato si’, which was at the origin of many initiatives. They frequented the same associative places, rubbed shoulders on social networks. Very quickly after the dissolution, they brought together other older movements (Secours catholique, CCFD-Terre Solidaire, etc.) and came together in “coordination”. A group was responsible for writing a column, which appeared on June 18 in La Croix, signed by 10,000 Christians, including Protestant leaders and more than 70 priests. In it, they affirmed their “determined opposition to the extreme right and its ideas”, without giving any voting instructions.

Another group organized a rally, called Justice and Hope, which attracted 500 people on June 23 – and 200 on YouTube. Prayers, songs and speeches follow one another on a stage not far from the headquarters of the Conference of Bishops of France, in the 7th arrondissement of Paris, in a “family, but serious and collected” atmosphere, testifies Bernard Lorrain, 56, who came look for “arguments to discuss with members of your parish group”. A third group prepared the argument, which served as the backbone of the platform.

In the name of faith

The fears of these young activists focus on two points: for them, the coming to power of the RN will sweep away social justice and ecological transition. “This party wants to call into question societal rights, the reception of foreigners and the protection of the planet,” fears Léa, 27, member of Lutte et Contemplation in Yonne. If they stood up, it was above all in the name of their faith. “The unconditional love shown to everyone by Christ is what brought me to the Church,” explains Olivier Perret, 27, student in Angers and co-founder of PAIX*.

If a political party withdraws rights from a section of society, on the pretext of its racial, social or sexual origin, it contradicts this unconditional love that Jesus offers us.” Foucauld Giuliani, 34 years old, professor of philosophy and co-founder of the Anastasis collective , evokes the social doctrine of the Church “which is based on the dignity of the person, the common good, solidarity, the universal destination of goods…” Without forgetting, of course, the Gospel “They constitute the. driving force of our commitment, underlines Olivier Perret, because Christ is opposed to any form of rejection of others and division. “The urgency generated by the decision of the President of the Republic accelerated their mobilization.

“We are experiencing a shift: it is now possible to loudly proclaim a Catholic commitment and political convictions,” enthuses Aude, 30, a prison doctor and member of the Lutte et Contemplation collective that initiated the Nantes gathering. In fact, by combining prayer and political manifesto, by unashamedly displaying their Christian identity and basing their fights on a loudly proclaimed faith, these young activists are shaking things up within the Church.

“With much less blockages and hesitations than us,” rejoices Jean-Luc, 71, former activist of the JOC (Young Christian Workers), who came to the Paris rally. They now hear that their voices carry far… in the ballot boxes, in the Church of France and beyond.

*”For an unconditional welcome in the Church”

Similar Posts