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WARSAW, Poland — The president of the Polish bishops’ convention cautioned Polish and Hungarian political leaders in opposition to fostering nationalism and xenophobia as each nations face European Union sanctions over their alleged authoritarian path.

Archbishop Stanislaw Gadecki of Poznan acknowledged that patriotism “characterizes our nations and is a great value,” however urged vigilance in order that patriotic values don’t “give rise to … contempt for others.”

“Given our common history, we should strive to be linked not just by a shared past, but also by a shared future,” Gadecki stated in his homily March 23 at a Mass for Polish-Hungarian Friendship Day in St. Michael Cathedral in Veszprem, Hungary.

President Andrzej Duda of Poland and President Janos Ader of Hungary attended the Mass, together with church leaders from the 2 historically Catholic nations.

Gadecki stated Poles and Hungarians had been carefully linked by shared historic experiences, from their 10th-century Christian conversion to their re-emergence as parliamentary democracies after the 1989 collapse of communist rule.

He added that each had joined the European Union in May 2004 and will stand collectively defending Christian values and going through nationwide challenges.

“Yet true friendship isn’t exclusive or closed in its own circle. It should also be open to others, thus presenting new perspectives for the future,” he stated.

“We often want to be viewed as the best and wisest, and often develop a false image of our friends. But the self-knowledge process should mean not just highlighting our merits but also admitting our faults and failures.”

The center-right governments of Poland and Hungary, respectively headed by prime ministers Mateusz Morawiecki and Viktor Orban, have been extensively criticized for insurance policies that embody a refusal to just accept EU quotas for receiving Muslim refugees and asylum-seekers from Syria, Iraq and different war-torn nations.

The EU’s governing fee has threatened to withhold structural funds and take each nations to the European Court of Justice, whereas additionally warning it could droop Poland’s EU voting powers over contested reforms by its ruling Law and Justice occasion to the judiciary and state media.

In his homily, Gadecki stated Poles and Hungarians had supported one another of their previous struggles for freedom and will do the identical in serving to negotiate present points and issues.

“One argument for seeking political friendship has been power — nations favor alliances with the strongest. But Hungarians and Poles are not such nations today,” the archbishop stated.

“Instead, friendship should mean sincerity, trust, sharing sadness and joy, bringing cheer and comfort and helping by example. It should also mean noble-mindedness, unselfishness, sympathy and solidarity.”

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