النضال من أجل العلمانية، آنذاك والآن

إنه لمن عجائب القدر أن تستعد فرنسا حالياً للاحتفال بالذكرى المئوية لصدور قانون التاسع من ديسمبر 1905 الذي قضى بفصل الكنيسة عن الدولة، في نفس الوقت الذي أخذت الاضطرابات تعكر الصفو الذي كانت تنعم به مدنها. لكن العواطف المتأججة كانت تحيط دوماً بالدور الذي لعبته الكنيسة والدور الذي لعبته الدولة طيلة التاريخ الفرنسي، حتى ولو لم يتمكن أحد من إقامة الدليل على وجود رابطة مباشرة بين أحداث الشغب الأخيرة وبين ما يسمى بالعلمنة الفرنسية.

يرجع الصراع القائم بين الكنيسة والدولة للفوز بالسيادة السياسية إلى العصور الوسطى، حين سعى قضاة فيليب لابيل إلى فرض سلطة ملكية على الكنيسة الكاثوليكية الرومانية في فرنسا. وبعد قرون من الزمان قامت الثورة الفرنسية التي قدمت لفرنسا حرية العقيدة والدين.

لقد ساعدت السرعة التي انتشرت بها الميول المناهضة للسيادة الإكليريكية الدينية أثناء الفترة الثورية من التاريخ الفرنسي في إفساح الطريق أمام نشوء علاقات أكثر توازناً بين الكنيسة والدولة، والتي تجسدت في الاتفاقية البابوية التي تمت في عام 1801 بين نابليون والبابا بايوس السابع ـ وما تزال هذه الاتفاقية سارية في الألزاس وأجزاء من اللورين حتى اليوم.

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