By P. Coupland
Britannia, Europa and Christendom brings to gentle the webs of impression linking Christian leaders and politicians and exhibits the conflicting relationships among nationwide identification and Christian universalism, and among Britain as a one-time international energy, a ecu country, and junior associate within the 'transatlantic alliance'.
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Additional resources for Britannia, Europa and Christendom: British Christians and European Integration
Toynbee’s thinking moved on similar lines. In his paper ‘First Thoughts on a Peace Settlement’ Toynbee argued that if Britain and France each jealously hoarded their sovereignty then their destiny was to lose it. Not only that, but to see the liberal and democratic way of life and civilisation itself lost to German fascist world domination. The only way out was for the two countries to match German power by pooling their sovereignties to become ‘a single AngloFrench state’. This ‘political union’, a ‘full and permanent’ federation, would then become the nucleus for ‘predominantly democratic and Christian-minded superstate’.
However, the tremendous dynamism unleashed by the war was by no means spent, but rather was of a growing power and historical consequence. F. 1 With the benefit of hindsight, British enthusiasm for federalism in 1940 stands out as an aberration in the long-term emphasis of policymakers on jealously safeguarding national sovereignty. Up to 1940, proposed solutions for the problems behind the war looked to a radical rearrangement of the international politics of Europe, and frequently stressed a federal future.
61 The Peace Aims Group Hence the approach of Temple, Paton and Bell during the period from the Beau Séjour conference to the first meetings of the Peace Aims Group in 1940 had a strong federalist flavour and definite European emphasis. A. Visser t’ Hooft, in consultation with Hans Schönfeld, the director of the Life and Work Study Department of the WCC in Geneva. T’ Hooft, with Paton, was joint secretary of the Council. 63 As a worldwide body whose links were not broken by the war, it was envisaged that this work by the ecumenical movement would be especially significant.