Archbishop Charles Chaput—Religious Liberty and Catholic Mission in the New Order of the World

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The Enlightenment-derived worldview that gave rise to the great murder ideologies of the last century remains very much alive. Its language is softer, its intentions seem kinder, and its face is friendlier. But its underlying impulse hasn’t changed -- i.e., the dream of building a society apart from God; a world where men and women might live wholly sufficient unto themselves, satisfying their needs and desires through their own ingenuity.

This vision presumes a frankly “post-Christian” world ruled by rationality, technology and good social engineering. Religion has a place in this worldview, but only as an individual lifestyle accessory. People are free to worship and believe whatever they want, so long as they keep their beliefs to themselves and do not presume to intrude their religious idiosyncrasies on the workings of government, the economy, or culture.

Now, at first hearing, this might sound like a reasonable way to organize a modern society that includes a wide range of ethnic, religious and cultural traditions, different philosophies of life and approaches to living.

But we’re immediately struck by two unpleasant details....

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchHistoryPhilosophyReligion & Culture* Religion News & CommentaryOther ChurchesRoman Catholic

Posted September 1, 2010 at 8:36 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

1. evan miller wrote:

A really outstanding piece.  Bishops like this make the Church of Rome awfully appealing.

September 1, 10:21 am | [comment link]
2. Rick H. wrote:

The two great American Catholic writers of the 20th century, Walker Percy and Flannery O’Connor, both wrote words to this effect:  “Tenderness, cut off from the source of tenderness, leads to the gas chamber.”  As cultural and political leaders in Europe and the United States frantically disassociate us all from any connection to Christian thought and Christian ethics, advancing the outright lie that Christianity played no significant role in Western history or in forming Western social mores, our risk of descent into totalitarianism grows exponentially.  It is no longer seems impossible that Christian thought will be classified as “hate speech” and individuals will one day be prosecuted in this country for advocating Christian ideas. 

Christianity proposes the radical idea that man cannot possibly build a just and prosperous society without divine help.  This is a humbling message that offends our prideful world.

September 1, 1:23 pm | [comment link]
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