By Ronnie Convery, the Italian Consul in Scotland.
As Friday approaches, with its 11pm deadline when the UK officially leaves the European Union, there is a temptation to retreat into bunkers of defiance (on the part of those of us who see the move as a tragic error) or triumphalism (among those who will see their plan realised).
Elsewhere the world is pulling itself apart, seemingly incapable of resisting extreme positions, with public discourse polarised as never before. Think Trump, think Salvini, think, well … Brexit.
What can we do to preserve civility and moderation in this race to the extremes?
One rather wonderful attempt to fly the flag for dialogue and civil engagement is being made by my friends Fr Joe Evans and Luke Wilkinson by launching a new online journal – Adamah – https://adamah.media
Adamah means good soil (lest you wondered) and it is only from the good soil of moderation and civil dialogue that good fruits can grow.
I have written a few articles for it … an overview of how cinema handles religion and a review of the Netflix hit The Two Popes.
But there’s much more in Adamah than my scribbles. Do go and have a look and maybe sign up for a regular note when a new edition is published online.
Meanwhile … Friday 31 January looms. For me the lowering of the flag of the 12 gold stars of Europe will be a sad moment. The EU was not perfect, but it was an example of international co-operation and sharing of expertise and resources unlike anything else in the world today.
We may lose our European citizenship and rights on Friday night, but we can never lose our European heritage, culture and history.
Ronnie Convery is the Italian Consul in Scotland