Council of European Bishops’ Conferences
Be an organ of communion between the Bishops' Conferences of Europe which has as its end the promotion and conservation of the good of the Church; exercise the collegiality in hierarchical communion cum et sub romano pontefice; realize the closer communication and co-operation between the European Bishops and Episcopal Conferences, respectful of the function and proper jurisdiction of each, to promote and inspire the new evangelisation in the European arena; promote the communion with the Councils of Bishops' Conferences of other continents; support the ecumenical collaboration in Europe, to re-establish Christian unity; be a living ecclesial witness in European society.
At the end of the Second Vatican Council, thirteen Presidents of European Bishops' Conferences decided to examine the possibility of collaboration. After a series of meetings, in March 1971 CCEE was officially founded and recognised by the Congregation for Bishops. In 1995 its current Statutes, where it is stated explicitly that the members of CCEE are the European Bishops' Conferences, represented by their respective Presidents, were approved. The Statutes also envisage the possibility that Bishops who are not members of a Bishops' Conference may also be members of CCEE as of right. In the course of its more than forty-year history, CCEE has held a number of meetings, including eight Symposia of European Bishops, and numerous meetings on issues of major pastoral importance in Europe.