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Have Our Bishops Seen This?

Massive study in the UK and Ireland reveals that the main reason for the decline in Church attendance there is theological liberalism and dumbed-down liturgies/services. Yes, people wan't substance. The main culprit of this trend, according to the study, was the notion of "the universal love of God." It seems that if people know that God loves them no matter what they do, then there is no reason to go to church.

The situation for the Catholic Church in both those countries looks rather ominous. In England, the Catholic Church has resorted to an embrace of a milquetoast social gospel while at the same time falling over itself to appease the Anglicans (even though there are more practicing Catholics and the Anglican Church is imploding by the minute in all of its irrelevance). In Ireland, ordinations are down from 100 priests in 1990 to five this year. Ireland is where the U.S. church was in the 1970s: experimental masses, ecumenism everywhere, flabby apologetics. Talking to the Irish seminarians themselves (their elite ones at the Irish College in Rome - where I lived for a year), one gets the sense that they really don't believe any of it anymore.

More astounding, is the embarrassment expressed by English and Irish churchmen at the mention of G.K. Chesterton. The English view him largely as a relic of a pre-modern age, while the Irish are positively scandalized by the romantic portrayal Chesterton had of the nation in his book "Irish Impressions." Now that they are a modern European financial capital, the Irish have no time for the sheep, Guinness, and greenery stuff.

This study comes on the heels of exploding rates of growth for Islam (even among the white population) as well Eastern Orthodoxy among the intellectuals. At one point, England's disenchanted Anglican thinkers became Catholics. No more. Now they are Orthodox, and that is a pity. But those religions teach their faith without apology, and that is what our age needs.

Hat tip: Democracy of the Dead.


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