Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Progress?



I was very impressed, as I have grown to expect to be, with Bishop Mark Davis' Easter homily. He speaks of the notion of "progress", and warns of the dangers of cutting our culture off from its Christian roots.

This is the conclusion:
Yet today we are becoming increasingly aware that there are those in leading positions within our society who wish to see history somehow reversed, who wish the very light which Christianity brought to these islands would recede. This is often done under the plausible intention of “modernizing” yet it is in reality an attempt to turn the clock back: as if the Gospel had never arrived in this land, never shaped its laws and culture and never formed the basis of our civilization. They are sometimes called “anti Christian” as Christians do indeed suffer as a consequence of new laws and regulations. But in fact the mentality is “pre-Christian.” They see progress only in terms of moving this nation away from its Christian inheritance, from the very roots of its laws, its culture, its life. In the words of the Psalm today they wish to discard “the corner stone” (Psalm 117) on which so much good in our society has been built.
Pope Benedict repeatedly points out, as he did to the German Parliament recently, that it is from faith in God our Creator that the very idea of human rights and of equality before the law arose, and that the inviolable dignity of every human person came to be recognized (Address to the German Parliament, 22nd September 2011). Otherwise, without such a foundation we would become subject to any passing ideology. Dr. John Sentamu, the Anglican Archbishop of York, was accused of “exaggerating” when he spoke of the Government’s proposals to re-define the identity of marriage as linked to a totalitarian mentality (The Daily Telegraph 31st January 2012). Yet his analysis of recent history is clearer than that of many of the leaders of opinion in our society.
It has, indeed, been the experience of this past century, as both Blessed John Paul II and Pope Benedict XVI have observed how the most poisonous ideologies have arisen within the Christian nations of Europe. Thus Nazism or Communism attempted to discard the Christian inheritance of faith and morality as if it had never existed. They sought either to return to the pagan past or to “re-create” and “redeem” humanity by political will and ideology with terrible consequences. If Christianity is no longer to form the basis and the bedrock of our society then we are, indeed, left at the mercy of passing political projects and perhaps even the most sinister of ideologies.
Easter morning recalls us from these disturbing shadows to that wonderful Light which shines for ever. For Christ in our very humanity shows us our true nature, our real dignity and our eternal destiny in the face of death itself. He is “the morning Star” which never sets. This the Church sings every Easter, that Christ sheds His peaceful light on all humanity, He who lives and reigns for ever and ever. Amen.

3 comments:

Nicolas Bellord said...

A totalitarian state? Well prying into our emailing, secret courts and an alleged collusion with torture may be early signs. The BBC ran a program on Monday night on the role of MI6 and Sir Mark Allen in renditioning a man back to Gaddafi's torture chambers and the Daily Mail covered it in full yesterday.

Readers will be interested to know that Cardinal Cormac Murphy O'Connor was instrumental in allowing Sir Mark Allen to chair the Ethics Committee of the Hospital of St John & St Elizabeth promptly tearing up the previous Code of Ethics that forbade referrals for abortion and claiming, erroneously, that he had the approval of Rome.

Do the methods of MI6 have a place in our leading "Catholic" Hospital?

PM said...

'Conservatives' have been blind to this for years. See, for example, the testimony of the Catholic-basher Matthew Parris on the role of Dawkins' 'Selfish Gene' as a manifesto for young Thatcherites like him in the 1970s.

Mater mari said...

Long live Bishop Davies! Now I wonder what house prices are like in the Shrewsbury diocese. . .