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The « Charter of natural and Christian principles of European Scouting » is one of the « core texts of UIGSE-FSE ». Bruno Rondet presents here his reflections about this important federal document.

Text of article 6

“Scouting intends to avoid in all fields the various forms of materialism or totalitarianism, however skilfully disguised and whether past, present or future”.


Materialism and totalitarianism take shapes which are disguised and constantly renewed, one after the other. Because it tries to apply the Gospel concretely, scout education educates to the values and to the permanent inviolable rights of the human being.

1/. Saint John-Paul II’s testament

In his testament book called « Memory and identity »[1], saint John Paul II gives us explanations about the disguised materialisms that threaten us. Because he was confronted to the nazi regime during his life, then to communism as he was a bishop, and finally to liberalism as a pope, his experience and his testimony have an exceptional value for us:

“If on the one hand the Western world goes on giving a testimony of the evangelic action, the trends of anti-evangelization are nevertheless strong. It even jeopardises the bases of human morals, involving the family and spreading moral permissiveness: divorces, free love, abortion, contraception, the fight against life in its initial and final phases, its manipulation. This programme is developed with huge financial means, not only in each nation, but also at the world scale. As a matter of fact, it may rely on big centres of economic power, through which it intends to impose its conditions to developing countries. In front of all that, we can legitimately wonder if it is not another form of totalitarianism, surreptitiously hidden under the appearances of democracy” (p. 64).

“The refusal of Christ, and especially of his paschal mystery -of the Cross and of the resurrection – appeared in the European thought during the Enlightenment period, at the end of the XVIIth century and the beginning of the XVIIIth century. In its various expressions, the Enlightenment opposed itself to what Europe had become under the effect of evangelization”.

“The radical “illuminated thinkers” rejected the truth about Christ, the Son of God, who made himself known by becoming a man, being born from the Virgin in Bethleem, announcing the Good News and giving his life for the sins of all men. The European thought of Enlightenment wanted to get rid of this God-man, dead and arisen, and it made numerous efforts to exclude it from the history of this continent. Many current thinkers and political men still remain obstinately faithful to this effort” (p. 119).

“During the XXth century, a lot was done to make the world stop believing and reject Christ. It is a devastation of consciences, with dramatic consequences in the field of morals, be it at personal or family level, as well as for social ethics. Unfortunately, Europe could be qualified as a continent of devastations at the turning point of the second millennium” (p. 147).

2/. Consumption society has only one aim: profit by trade

For the liberal economic system, also called liberalism, only the material world exists. The only aim proposed to everyone is the material satisfaction of his wishes, constantly excited by advertisements. This can lead only to dissatisfaction and despair.

         The testimony of Hugues Aufray (a singer, formerly member of the Scouts de France) in a daily magazine on September 4th 2016 is interesting. “My world and the one of my parents is dead. We are constantly hearing predictions about the end of the world, provoked either by a tsunami or by an earthquake… whereas it has already happened! We must be conscious that the boat is sinking, we are now making reproductions in a glass jar. For forty years, we have been living with the technological evolution and it is true that nowadays everyone has a washing machine. But for me, this is not an improvement. Do you find it normal that an 8-year-old boy should prostitute himself in Bali? The only sustainable progress is the one of social morals”.

         As John Paul II often denounced it, liberalism and communism are brothers.

It is necessary to study some economy in order to understand. Social justice is what men are trying to realise between them: it is the fair repartition of goods between the members of a society. It is instituted by public and private organizations, in order to promote the dignity of the persons and the respect of human communities. It is a society as centuries of Christian civilization had conceived and instituted it, in our countries, after the monastic communities of the Middle Ages.

Nowadays economic liberalism has dropped this Christian conception of society, because it hinders its development. We might think that it is able to achieve economic and social freedom, because its name of liberalism seems to be an act of homage to freedom. As a matter of fact, it is only the freedom of undertaking business, not the freedom of those who live in such a society.

This confusion between liberty and liberalism leads to the fact that many people are going to make an instinctive link between liberty and liberal ideology. This hijacking of the term, fuelled by the media, is frightening. It is a lie that must be unmasked, as the communist ideology was unmasked at the time. Indeed, behind a call to liberty, the point is to justify social injustice. All the more because liberalism works towards annexing gradually to its profit the political, economic, social, demographic and financial instruments that the sovereign States had established, century after century, to fulfil their mission[2].

3/. The totalitarian drift of liberalism

Bishop Michel Schooyans has taught in several universities. He focused his research on the social teaching of the Church, the demographic issues and their political challenges. His work about the totalitarian drift of liberalism was honoured by a personal letter from Pope John Paul II. A few years later, he completed it by a second book: “The hidden face of the United Nations”[3].

In these books, which cap an important work, he shows that technocracy has colonised the international bodies. Starting from the principle that the demographic upsurge of poor countries jeopardizes the world safety, international programmes have used contraception as the central element of development. Three specialized bodies of the UNO have been charged of applying that policy: UNDP, UNFPA and WHO[4] (4). These bodies define policies, gather funds, create and distribute means at the world scale. In disregard of the principle of subsidiarity, they behave as if they were empowered to influence the sovereign States. They never mention any natural method. The methods that must be used are mechanical, chemical, surgical. But the problems raised by the world demography are not technical, they are moral.

This totalitarianism attacks natural, cultural, family and national communities. Thus, the liberal market alienates the couples, destroys the families and suppresses the nations, by going over the States.

4/. “You are the present and the future of Europe and of the Church” (cardinal Sarah)

In front of this situation, holy Pope John Paul II did not give up. He sent us in mission: “Here starts an enormous field for the mission of the Church” (“Memory and Identity” p. 147).  It is exactly what cardinal Robert Sarah did when he presided the gathering of the European Scout Rovers in Vézelay on October 31st 2016[5].

 “Everyone knows that since the foundation of European Scouting in 1956 – exactly 60 years ago -, and even recently, some people have tried to make the Guides and Scouts of Europe keep silent in many ways, more or less insidiously, asking them among others to edulcorate some expressions of their core texts, because they were considered as no more adapted to the so called “modern” world. But, at the height of the storm, when a big agitation was hitting many parish and religious communities, your predecessors, true “living stones” of the Holy Church, – national, province and district commissioners, leaders, religious advisers, many of them being already back in the Father’s home – your predecessors have firmly kept their line in the trial, humbly and in prayer…”

 “…you are the heirs of this humble and firm fidelity of your predecessors. Don’t let yourselves be influenced by a Europe which is drunk of its numerous ideologies doing a lot of harm to the whole mankind. Think of Marxism and its gulags, of Nazism and its horrors, and now the gender theory attacking directly the laws of God and of nature, destroying marriage and our societies, damaging our children right from their school age. I repeat it: the gender ideology, the disproportionate and unlimited democratic freedoms, and the ISIS have all the same satanic origin. You, European Scout Rovers, if you resist to this Europe without God, proudly dominating over the poor and the weak, and denying its Christian roots, you will prevent it from committing suicide and from disappearing, eliminated by more virile peoples, more believing and prouder of their identity and of their relation to God. You are the present and the future of Europe and of the Church. You have energy and faith, and your attachment to Jesus Christ will enable you to build again the Christian legacy and the European society”.

Bruno Rondet

(To be followed)

[1] ). John Paul II. « Memory and identity ». Libreria Editrice Vaticana. Città del Vaticano 2005. Editions Flammarion. Paris. 2005.

[2] After Bishop Michel Schooyans, « The totalitarian drift of liberalism », Mame-Editions de l’Emmanuel, 1995, pp 98 to 101.

[3] Michel Schooyans. « The hidden face of the United Nations ». Le Sarment. Paris. 2000. He wrote about 20 books, translated into several languages. He is a member of numerous bodies, among which the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences (Rome).

[4] UNDP (United Nations Development Programme), UNFPA (United Nations Fund for Population Activities), and WHO (World Health Organization).

[5] This text is for all : indeed, any leader must consider himself as a Scout Rover on duty, and any female leader as a Ranger on duty. We should not make any distinction between men and women on this point.

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