Wednesday, 23 March 2011

European Court of Human Rights Overrules Crucifix Prohibition

Crucifixes will be allowed to be displayed in public buildings, even in Italy. Image courtesy of Wikipedia.

Joel Kontinen

The apostle Paul wrote that the cross is foolishness to unbelieving non-Jews:

Jews demand signs and Greeks look for wisdom, but we preach Christ crucified: a stumbling block to Jews and foolishness to Gentiles, but to those whom God has called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. For the foolishness of God is wiser than human wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than human strength.” (1 Corinthians 1:22-25, NIV)

In 2009, Mrs. Soile Lautsi, a latter-day skeptic, complained to the European Court of Human Rights because she felt that the crucifixes displayed in Italian schools violated the human rights of non-Catholic families.

Last week, the Grande Chambre of the European Court of Human Rights ruled almost unanimously to overturn its previous sentence on the issue.

Italian schools will thus be allowed to display crucifixes in the future, also.

Vatican Information Service provided background information on the case:

It is, in fact, a significant and historic sentence, as shown by the conclusion reached by the Grande Chambre after a detailed appraisal of the matter. The Grande Chambre has, indeed, overturned in all respects a first degree sentence, adopted unanimously by a Chamber of the Court. This sentence led to an appeal by the Italian State, which received an unprecedented degree of support from numerous other European States as well as from many non-governmental organisations, an expression of widespread feeling amongst people.”

It is a mystery why free-thinkers would even attempt to restrict the rights of those with whom they disagree.


Crucifix, An Expression of Cultural and Religious Identity. Vatican Information Service 21 March 2011.

Italia voitti kiistan koulujen krusifikseista Euroopan ihmisoikeustuomioistuimessa. Aamulehti 19 March 2011, A12.