One of Two Steps: “A Secular Religion That Tolerates No Opposition” – Cardinal O’Connor

By test|May 18, 2012|News Commentary, to be moved|

The Battle for the Core continues as more and more leaders in the Church start begin to recognize what “compromise with the modern world” means for religions. It happens to be a characteristic trait in 18th century modern literature foretelling the utopia of a 'the modern world' excluding God, or at least one that isn't on board with religious indifferentism. The popes of the 20th century responded harshly warning those in the Church not to fall into the error or trying to wed the fiercest humanistic principles of modern world with their religion in encyclicals like:

  • On Liberalism (Mirari Vos). Gregory XVI. 1832.
  • On Current Errors (Quanta Cura). Pius IX. 1864.
  • The Syllabus of Errors. Pius IX. 1864.
  • On Government Authority (Diuturnum Mud). Leo XIII. 1881.
  • On Freemasonry and Naturalism (Humanum Genus). Leo XIII. 1884.
  • On the Nature of True Liberty (Libertas Praestantissimum). Leo X111. 1888.
  • On the Condition of the Working Classes (Rerum Novarum). Leo XIII. 1891.
  • On Christian Democracy (Graves de Communi Re). Leo XIII. 1901.
  • Syllabus Condemning the Errors of the Modernists (Lainentabili Sane). St. Pius X. 1907.
  • On Modernism (Pascendi Dominici Gregis). St. Pius X. 1907.
  • Our Apostolic Mandate (On the “Sillon”). St. Pius X. 1910.
  • The Oath Against Modernism. St. Pius X. 1910.
  • On the Feast of Christ the King (Quas Primas). Pius XI. 1925.
  • On Fostering True Religious Unity (Mortalium Animos). Pius XI. 1928.
  • On Atheistic Communism (Divini Redemptoris). Pius XI. 1937.
  • On Certain False Opinions (Humani Generic). Pius XII. 1950.

But people in the Church (especially the Pope (1, 2), professors and bishops (1, 2, 3)  in Rome) within the last three years seem to be acknowledging the elephant in the room in recent years. The elephant is: We pretty much caved to humanism. Its time to get back on the horse despite the loss.  

However, secular humanists aren't content with letting religion die a slow death on its own. (1, 2) and the Cardinal in England is telling his experience first hand with this:

Cardinal Murphy O’Connor has joined the ranks of bishops defending the Catholic Faith from increasing intolerance from secularists in the UK in his address at Leicester’s Anglican Cathedral.

The Cardinal said: ‘In the name of tolerance it seems to me tolerance is being abolished.’

“Our danger in Britain today is that so-called western reason claims that it alone has recognised what is right and thus claims totality that is inimical to freedom,” he said in comments.

“No one is forced to be a Christian. But no one should be forced to live according to the new secular religion as if it alone were definitive and obligatory for all humankind.”

“The propaganda of secularism and its high priests [Probably referring to the priesthood of Comte] is the theme of this blog  want us to believe that religion is dangerous for our health. It suits them to have no opposition to their vision of a brave new world, the world which they see as somehow governed only by people like themselves.

“They conveniently forget that secularism itself does not guarantee freedom, rationality … or violence. Indeed, in the last century, most violence was perpetrated by secular states on their own people.” [Ding. But that's half the point Your Excellency. The question is about two claims to truth, not results.]

He also said the whole of society was guilty of “sanctioning violence” against the elderly by everyday prejudices, viewing them as an expensive burden.

He said a loss of “reverence” for humanity meant that some of the most vulnerable people in society are now routinely viewed as a “problem” or “threat”.

And he said that political decisions to cut back on vital care services amounted to denying older people’s fundamental right to life.

He quoted Cicero to illustrate that debates about care for the elderly date back millennia.

“An ageing population certainly presents its challenges – not least to our prejudices – but it is also an extraordinary gift,” he continued.

“When society only sees age as an expensive inconvenience, a threat to resources and lifestyles, it no longer sees a person but a problem.

“This permits a slow erosion of dignity; subtly and silently the process of dehumanisation has begun.”

Something important to point out is that there are two steps back that we have taken as a church (with a lower case because I am speaking on a practical historical level, rather than doctrinal), and only one is acknowledged in the Cardinal's comments above. There are two types of liberalism (not political liberalism so if you're an American democrat don't get all hot and bothered) which have affected the Church.

  • The first step was to commonly and publicly claim that Christ is not necessary for salvation as he was merely a prophet or 'good man' by redefining and loading the term “ecumenism”. (Liberalism 1.0 as Fr. Robert Barron calls it). No document officially condones this (including Vatican II), but it continues to be emphasized in nearly every parish all around the world that you don't have to believe in Christ to be saved. But what's the point? Why do you expect people to be Christians? Because they are just super-passionate about spiritual realities even though in the end if you are a good person (a humanist) you get to heaven anyways…because God is a merciful God and he has the power to not put someone in hell…so therefore we can count on it? This is the most significant of the errors listed in all the encyclicals above. If you believe 2+2=4 why would you go around spending most of your time talking about why “I can respect your opinion that 2+2=3 and I can see why you think that and I don't call you “wrong” for saying that.”? Why? To avoid conflict? Or to implicitly acknowledge the humanistic principles that you can be good without God? At that point, Christianity essentially becomes humanism.
  • The second step (Liberalism 2.0) after having the Church acknowledge the 'equality' of all religions and the residual humanistic 'goodness' as all that matters, is the removal of religion itself from the public square. That is not a new idea. The original humanists/enlightenment philosophers wanted to go about this rapidly rather than slowly, and this is why I have made Auguste Comte as the antagonist on this blog. He sent letters to various Jesuit institutions in his time asking the rectors to join his side to aknowledge humanity as the great being. He knew that if he were to spread his “Religion of Humanity” as he called it, he would need the support of his greatest opponent: the Catholic Church. He even sent a letter to the Pope himself.