There’s a growing realisation that our civilisation is declining and that the marginalisation of Christianity and the undermining of family are key reasons.
I am not a pessimist – it is recoverable if we pray and act. But we have to be realistic in the mean-time.
And we can take hope that mainstream commentators are joining the dots between Christianity and a flourishing society.
I’ve been reading The Australian’s Paul Kelly since I was a teenager but his articles of late are sounding a big wake up call. I just hope we are listening.
His piece on Saturday began by talking about “the almost certain link between the generational decline in the Christian faith as guide to the common good and the collapsing relationship between the people and the political system”.
He is saying that trust breaks down when Christianity breaks down.
Further in the article he says: “The idea that our democracy is founded on core moral truths about human nature has collapsed.”
This means that when we ditch the idea that human life is sacred, that the gender differences between men and women in marriage and family formation matter, our democracy itself is in trouble.
Kelly goes on: “The reality is staring us in the face. Yet it cannot be spoken, cannot be entertained, cannot be discussed because there is no greater heresy and no more offensive notion than that the loss of Christian faith might have a downside.”
We live in a society that no longer values truth and we wonder why things are falling apart.
The church has largely sat by silently while much of this has occurred.
It is worth paying the subscription to get through The Australian’s paywall to read Kelly’s article in full.
Another columnist at The Australian, Dr Jennifer Oriel also recently wrote about “the danger of losing Christ”.
Disdain for truth and integrity was on display again this week with Liberal Senator Dean Smith proposing to bring on a same-sex marriage bill even though he was elected on a platform opposing change without a people’s vote first.
Never mind that just a week ago the Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull had to slap down Cabinet Minister Christopher Pyne for also declaring he wanted to break the Liberals’ election promise on marriage.
Putting aside the treacherous politics, the idea that the party of Sir Robert Menzies could be so blind as to support a redefinition of marriage with the unjust consequences this brings to children is almost incomprehensible.
With Labor having capitulated (something that would have been incomprehensible to Curtin and Chifley) and the Liberals tearing themselves apart over same-sex marriage (can you believe it?), one has to wonder how it came to this.
This brings me to US President Donald Trump’s speech in Poland at the weekend, which touched on similar themes to Kelly’s article.
One of the worst features of modern politics is the use of slurs to avoid engaging with the ideas of people we don’t like.
It’s an easy trap to fall into – especially if someone has unlikable traits and integrity issues of their own.
President Trump is a classic example.
But his speech in Poland was one of the most important I have read from a Western leader.
That it is taking a figure like Trump to say these things goes to the failure of leaders of moral character to speak.
“The fundamental question of our time is whether the West has the will to survive,” Trump asked.
“Do we have the desire and the courage to preserve our civilisation in the face of those who would subvert and destroy it?”
These are open questions.
They are questions that we at ACL have asked and answered – that is why together with you we are doing what we are doing.
That secular commentators and a US President are recognising that faith, family and freedom are basic to our civilisation’s preservation and flourishing is encouraging.
Trump went on to reference the Polish Pope, St John Paul II’s first mass in Poland on becoming Pope in 1979.
“We want God”, the crowd chanted over and over.
After 50 years of atheistic communism telling the people lies, they knew God needed to be back at the centre.
There is no Plan B for a just, compassionate and free society.