Monday, 28 October 2013

New Men, New Women

The Church in the 21st Century will see times compared to the Fall of the Roman Empire, as sovereign nations will change, morph into new conglomerations based on finance, or even a global government. Those nations not part of this change, which is already happening in some parts of the world, and which has already happened culturally, will continue to be "at the gates". The simplicity and materialistic religion of Islam will continue to appeal to many men, as Hilaire Belloc predicted over 70 years ago, as it appeals to millennial aspirations, just as communism and socialism do.

There is no such thing for the Catholic as millennial, utopian state of human perfection on earth under a physical leader. When Christ comes again to judge the living and the dead in His Second Coming, we shall see the end of this earth.

This is the teaching of the Church for centuries. St. Augustine rightly and succinctly wrote of the City of Man as against the City of God in his great classic, which was written as a defense of the Christians who were being blamed for the downfall of Rome. Some saw the heretical Christian sect as undermining the civic order of Rome, which is obviously not the case, as the decadence of the Republic and then the Empire came from within the totalitarian state based on emperor worship and a dying population, dying both physically and spiritually.
The sadness of Seneca

Not to see parallels in the cult of personality so many give to some political leaders, to so many people who want a political messiah, a la Liberation Theology, would be blindness. As a teacher, first in Montessori and then in either university or very advanced private high schools, some of which I set up as a curriculum adviser, I saw the rot first hand of the lack of rational discourse among students, a change happening from 1979 to 1999 with great rapidity.

Now, in 2013, we need new men and new women formed in the Catholic and classical tradition, not merely to survive the onslaught of more and more barbarism, but to preserve not only the teachings of the Catholic Church, handing these down to the next generation, but also the jewels of Western Civilization, including the Trivium and Quadrivium.

New men and new women going forward into the next 25 years as adults must be formed in the virtues, given to all baptized Catholics and confirmed in confirmation, and formed in the thinking of the West, which is a combination of the liberal arts and the Catholic religion. Anything less will not only undermine the Church is most places, but see an end to both the influence of the Church and the influence of classical education, which, of course, includes art and music.

Those barbarians at the gates fall into four categories. Are we ready to meet them?

One, relativists and atheists, who want to remove all traces of Catholicism from the public square.

Two, materialists who continually deny an afterlife and live in a consumer frenzy of buying and selling.

Three, other ideologists, such as communists, socialists, gay activists, and Islamists who want to impose their world order on to the entire world, suppressing the one, true, holy, Catholic and apostolic Church.

Four, the weak Christians, who live in fear and sadly, go along with those above, rather than standing firm. Many are those who compromise, as using contraception or supporting ssm and so on; those willing to work with the enemies of Christ have always included many from the ranks.

New men and new women must be strong both in character, mind, and body. This means that parents need to form their children now to be saints now, and to re-establish the idea that the Catholic Faith is and always has been counter-cultural.

Look at the ruins of the great basilicas and cathedrals of Northern Africa. Those wastelands of Christianity could be the future of Ireland, England, France, Spain, Portugal and so on.

The only fingers in the dikes will be those who have learned how to think and live like Catholics. The rest will be washed away where those dikes are weakest. England may be one place where the Church only survives as a small remnant.

Do you want to be a new man and a new woman?

Ruins of the great diocese of Hippo may be seen here.

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