This short article is dedicated to our British friends with the wish of seeing you back soon.

Although there has been much talk of the United States of Europe in recent years, I still like to think that our Europe is much more than a sum of States. The European Union that we know now started in 1957 with only six members and it started as a community. For several people “union” and “community” could be synonyms, but for me it is different. The word “community” reminds me of a story that Father Stefano of the Abbey of Sant’Antimo told us several years ago during a scout camp.

A community is like a hand, and a hand has five fingers:

  • The thumb, used for the hitch-hiking, is the person that always asks for help;
  • The index finger, used to point, is the person that judges others;
  • The middle finger, used to insult, is the brat, the rebel;
  • The ring finger, used to wear the wedding ring, is the loyal person, the one who keeps his/her word;
  • And the little finger, used to clean the ears, is the person who does the dirty job.

They are all different with unique characteristics and purposes, however, together they make up a hand that can do much more of what every single finger can do by itself.

I really like the idea of picturing Europe like a hand, it is particularly insightful.

A Europe where no one can prevail over the others (can you imagine a hand full of indexes?) and where everyone is important (think about a hand without the thumb.)

We often have discussions and arguments, but it is normal because we are all different.

It is also clear that together we are doing something extraordinary that no one never imagined possible.