III. Restoration Of The Culture

   "This is the history…that Christ calls and wants all beneath His standard, and Lucifer, on the other hand, wants all under his"

-St. Ignatius of Loyola, Spiritual Exercises, n.136


       Christendom is called that because it is, or at least was, a civilization established upon Christian principles, which elevate and uplift, because it is based upon a radical and unique concept: the dignity of every person made in the image and likeness of God. From that basic tenet a great civilization would emerge and flourish, and with the rejection of its Christian foundation, the civilization would decline and fall. Sadly today much of our post-modern culture rejects not only the supernatural generally, but Christ and Christianity in particular, replacing even the underlying principle of man made in the image of God, with a more nihilistic, vainglorious, utilitarian view of mankind, which has helped create and maintain our throwaway culture.  It’s true you can’t beat something with nothing, meaning rejecting a belief in Christ does not mean they’ll believe in nothing, but will as a whole, believe in everything. Another truism: nature (and cultures) abhor vacuums, and removing its Christian underpinnings, leaves a moral and spiritual void, which is being filled by dangerous forces of militant atheism, secular humanism, communism, nationalism, Islamism, consumerism, relativism, materialism, and multiculturalism, among others. Thankfully none of these man-made heresies are worthy substitutes capable of replacing Christianity and uniting an entire civilization around its gospel principles and Kingship of Christ. But, that doesn’t mean many social revolutionaries won’t try to undermine what’s left of the great civilization in an attempt to usher in some hate-filled, man-made dystopia causing misery for millions in its wake. Unless we see a return to the Lord who alone can reunite all of the West, we will see wars, strife, terrorism, unrest, shortages, anarchy, violence, and desperation like never before. Rejection of its Christian roots leads to the rejection of liberty and unity, and rejection of Christ leads to a rejection of traditional morality and the value of human life.

      Few can deny the zeitgeist, the spirit of the age, a spirit of prideful, man-centric revolution, has swept across Christendom since its unity was violently shattered in the 16th Century. Which is why we need a Christian ethos, to stand in sharp contrast to the diabolical, divisive spirit of the world and its prince, and the Holy Spirit to again spread over the earth, renewing it and us as a new creation. There is clearly a spirit sweeping across our own country as well, as witnessed by the large number of people longing for a return to our founding principles, of which I tend to agree. But, why stop there? Why look to restore an era where the secular spirit of the Enlightenment dominated, and religious practice, a belief in a personal God, in a divine/human Jesus, and in miracles, was on the wane.  Why look to a time when many of our founding fathers though, noble, altruistic and courageous, were deists, masons, and secularists, preferring Voltaire and Locke to Matthew and Mark? Why look to these men and this time as the idealized pinnacle of humanity, when they were merely flawed vehicles of God’ Providence? Why look up to men with full heads of brown hair who wore curly white toupees, knickers and silky stockings? For the Constitution does not rise to the level of Holy Scriptures, and the founding fathers clearly were not the Church Fathers. As long as you want to get in the spiritual time machine, why choose the 18th Century a time of apostasy full of post-enlightenment heresies, when our best example lies in the 13th?  

      For there were others who emulated our battle for Independence. Inspired by and in the wake of our nation’s independence and fueled by a hatred of established authority, the French started their own revolution which was a bloody, sacrilegious rebellion against tradition, God and His Church. Based upon the utopian, man-centered concepts of liberty, fraternity and equality, they soon realized that some idealized concept of secular fraternity based upon nationalism rather than the redemption of Christ, was meaningless and ultimately divisive, giving birth to many more divisive heresies in its wake.

       British statesman Quintin Hogg in his 1947 book The Case for Conservatism explains to cause and cure, and does it, providentially, in family terms:

      So what are we supposed to do in the face of evil? Nothing? Doing nothing is actually choosing a side, the side of decline and depravity, of the world and it's prince in opposition to God and His holy will. Both Edmund Burke and Jesus tell us as much:

"The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing."  -Burke

"He who is not with me is against me, and he who does not gather with me scatters."  -Jesus

      Granted, a few relevant quotes may not be enough to completely change one's life and rush headlong into the infernal and eternal battle of good versus evil. There are those, far more rational and practical than I, who before embarking, or not embarking, on a particular cause of action, devise a cost/benefit analysis of action versus inaction. So for the belt, suspender, and extra pair of slacks crowd, (does anyone say slacks anymore?) here are the costs and benefits of joining this fight, compared with a similar period of Christian history – 1st – 3rd Century A.D.

So what are the costs? 

Well in the Early Church the costs were high including, beheading, flaying, and boiling in oil. Today, the worst thing our witness would produce is an occasional exaggerated eye roll, a disapproving head shake, or a condescending smirk.

And what are the benefits?  

In the Early Church, you’d have to teach and introduce people for the first time to the divine person of Jesus, which over time and based upon heroic, holy lives, a conversion or two might occur. Today, people in our society already know who Jesus is, and are the beneficiaries of our Christian principles whether they readily realize it or not. We have a head start and only have to get them to fall back in love with Him whom their hearts already long for. In leading our families, we fulfill our God-given mission, resulting in more virtuous families, more vibrant churches, and a restoration of a truly Christian culture. Not bad. Plus the biggest perk is being able to move in to a big old mansion in the prime part of heaven, as opposed to the smaller, much warmer dwelling we may inherit if we fail. So if you’re keeping score: Minimal costs, unimaginable immediate and eternal benefits, such that mathematician, physicist, inventor, writer, philosopher, and inveterate gambler Blaise Paschal would call this a no-brainer, a lead pipe cinch. 

     This doesn’t mean that, like many medievalist (assuming that there are many, of course) I believe that everything and everyone in the Middle Ages were noble, virtous and holy, or that a benevolent monarchy is the preferable form of secular government, better than a Contitutional Republic established by our founders, from which we have long since departed.   For I’m pretty sure that to God the substance of the authority is more important than its form.  And yes, in the 13th Century we saw great examples of holy humble cousin kings (Saint Louis IX of France, and Saint Ferdinand III of Spain), who ruled their people in God’s stead according to biblical principles. There was also King Arthur who I once thought was a mythical figure until I saw the documentary, entitled Monty Python and the Holy Grail, who searched tireless for the Holy Grail against all odds, wizards, giants, rude French knights, and even a carnivous white rabbit. But if you still want to imitate 18th Century America over the great 13th Century Christian civilization, look to the selfless example of the many humble, poor, heroic missionaries who left the comfort and safety of their homes only to lose life and often limb recognizing the inherent dignity of the native peoples of North and South America, rather than the silk-stocking, wig-wearers and their successors who viewed them as less than human, killed them, and drove them off their land (yeah you Andrew Jackson).

"I do not think that there is any hope for the world or my country unless men can come to regard themselves as members of a common brotherhood. But the brotherhood of man is philosophically meaningless and practically unattainable except in the light of the universal Fatherhood of God…. The denial of the fatherhood of God is the root from which spring quite naturally the various heresies which have afflicted the species in our time, the doctrine of race and of class, the worship of the State, the philosophy of dialectical materialism, or the more pragmatic and not less popular creeds of Get-rich-quick, or All’s-fair-in-love-and-war."

      For like it or not, the war rages all around us, and being some apathetic, spiritual Switzerland is not an option. The battle lines are being drawn: millions are choosing the darkness over the light of Christ, and many millions more are siding with evil, simply by doing nothing, by not choosing to be on God’s side, by failing to both fight and pray, by simply going with the infernal flow toward the eternal abyss, they perpetuate the conquest of civilization by the evil one. Look around. It’s no coincidence that militant atheists, socialists, parts of the social justice movement, radical Islam, Hollywood, societal elites, the news media, academia, anti-Semites, progressives, radical feminists, and radical environmentalists inexplicably have all joined forces. Think about it. Where is the common ground among these disparate special interest advocacy groups? What is the rational basis that would cause these narrow interest groups to unite in support of each other? There is none, and the only explanation that makes sense is good versus evil, though many of those are

the ones who vociferously demonize those of us who want simply to preserve traditional morality, claiming they, not us, are the ones on the side of the good.

“Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness,” –Isaiah 5:20

       How else can you explain how militant atheists hate every religion except the religion of hate? Or how pro-abortion, “women’s right’s” feminists are completely silent about the one entity that wages a daily demeaning, deadly, and disfiguring war on women? Or how the celebrity crowd  that spreads their errors across the globe, adding to the muslims’ constant petulant hatred of the West, makes Islam their cause celeb, afraid not only to satire,  but ridiculously casting every terrorist as an amorphous Eastern European, when 99.9% of terrorists are muslim. Or how the favorite religion of the homosexual lobby is the one religion that openly calls for their murder and extinction? If we were to draw concentric circles around these seemingly unrelated leftist group, I’m afraid the overlap would be so great it’d look like a compressed slinky. Yet this litmus test of sorts may provide an insight into the state of the soul of the person advocating and aligned with these ideologies of evil. Conversely, if someone is pro-life, pro-traditional family, pro-religious liberty, pro-Christianity, pro-traditional morality, pro-Israel, anti-political correctness, anti-multi-culturalism, anti-earth worship, anti-socialist, then what side do you think they're on?.

 Well you may wonder what’s the worst thing that can happen if you choose to do nothing?

Okay, families including your own will continue to be attacked, undermined, and ultimately destroyed. Your children, specifically entrusted to your care and protection by God Himself will be corrupted, violated, defiled, and wounded, without your countercultural example, teaching, and leadership. Your marriage will be attacked, weakened, damaged by the many near occasions of sin, if left unprotected by the sacramental, sacrificial love of Christ. Your very soul will be in jeopardy, and the souls of your family, by your failure to fulfill your mission and live up to your God-given responsibility.

And that’s just the micro-level. Our churches may fail even to attract 20% of the faithful, continuing the downward spiral of an increasingly irrelevant, unfriendly, sterile, joyless institution, devoid of any resemblance to the initial Christian community, unable to reflect and project the infinite love and mercy of Christ in the world. The speed and trajectory of our cultural decline will likely increase, dramatically so, leaving the next generation even worse than our own, with greater depravity, immorality, violence, hatred, and the eternal loss of millions of precious souls caught up in its wake.  

So what’s it gonna be?

There are only two options.

Choose a side!


religion at its core, and the two rise and fall together.  As Dawson wrote in 1938: "A society which has lost its religion becomes sooner or later a society which has lost its culture."

      So I may ask what good would it be to simply overlay to our unsacred scriptures, the Constitution, upon an immoral and irreligious culture, with its negative rights and near unrestricted freedom to kill babies, encourage homosexuality, abandon the old and disabled, using and discarding others, robbing them of their human dignity, and selfishly pursuing pleasure, power, and wealth? We need to first rebuild and reconstruct our religious and moral foundation, for such founding principles to be effective. I’m sure both Adams and Dawson would agree that restoring our Christian culture, that which undergirds and supports all that we as a free people require for self governance, is the first necessary step to the hoped for renewal of our nation. For without the self-governing restraints of religion and morality, in the throwaway, utilitarian culture in which we live, the coveted ideal of freedom can devolve into mere license to do and get whatever one wants without restraints. Freedom and free people do not flourish in a nihilistic culture much of the West has become. Freedom, too is the sworn enemy of Islam, that takes a more homicidal/puritanical view of what its culture should be, not trusting the ability of man to control his excited, often maniacal emotions. For only under the backdrop of Christianity, freedom makes sense and becomes the great good God created us to enjoy. For according to Christian tradition, doing whatever one wants is not freedom, but slavery, for in doing so one becomes a slave to his passions, unable to control, govern and moderate his own words and actions. Freedom is possessing the self-discipline to choose the good, the right, the true, and being able to govern oneself, rather than be ruled by sinful desires, the need for immediate gratification, and base, sometimes irrational, emotions.

        Yet what this Americanism approach fails to take into account is the need for a moral and religious culture to undergird our entire republican system of government. John Adams, perhaps the most openly religious of the founding fathers, rightly predicted: Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other. And the great Catholic Harvard Historian Christopher Dawson understood that the religion more than any other factor forms, shapes, directs, defines, and sustains the culture, and without a vibrant transformative religion, like Christianity, the culture will inevitably decline and fall. To Dawson, religion was "the key to history." He rightly observed that “culture” is directly related to “cult”, being the organized practice of religious worship. He noted that every culture has a