What is wrong with today’s world? Since Cain killed Abel, life has always dealt more harshly with some than others. This historical fact, with its uneven and unfair outcomes, has also driven a tendency to level the playing field in various ways. Today, as in numerous times past, many utopia-seekers impatient for Heaven deny God on earth and try to replace Him with idols and atheistic theories. Today as well they deny the existence of the spiritual part of man, the soul, and at best they believe God, if He does exists, has no active role in human affairs and isn’t necessary for human happiness.
“The sickness of the world is due less to a lack of new ideas than to the rejection of old truths.”(BPS Fulton Sheen)
The truth of faith is simple yet profound. God, in the person of Jesus Christ, the uncreated Creator, is the first cause and the last destination because man was destined for God who created him; to love God and to serve God. Human society exists because we were created as social beings, not as separate individuals doing their own thing. Because man is social, he needs social institutions like the family, the Church, schools, government, etc.
Humanity needs the associations of others to become fully human. Language developed not so we could talk to ourselves, but so that we could communicate with others. Society’s ultimate goal should be to love and protect all people and bring them into a wholeness that no single person or human virtue can attain; a real and eternal association with God.
Religion, especially Christianity, explains the role of society in general and the makeup of morally correct social cohesiveness in particular. Our social life and our private life should be based on the common good which itself is based on what it takes to reach our ultimate destination; Heaven. Religion, Christianity, seeks and answers the ultimate paths to the whole truth of man, seen and unseen, and sees the fundamental causes of all human existence, human suffering and human destiny. We are intelligent beings and have always sought answers that our wisdom and human intelligence afford us. The two branches of knowledge – wisdom, which is God inspired, and human knowledge, which studies the laws of nature and their interconnections are interrelated, but wisdom trumps human knowledge.
Reason and intelligence are good things. It is a great thing to be a rational person. The spiritualized person, however, has a greater calling because those who know they have a spirit put it above the material part of their humanity. The spirit and things spiritual should reign; therefore, over reason and those things solely material or rational. Rationalism not guided by “The Way,The Truth and The life”(Jn.14:6) wears the opaque lens of human intelligence devoid of wisdom. For example:
People who don’t know the difference between a man and a woman.
People who don’t know that a child in the womb is a living human being.
There are many other examples of this, but these two will suffice for now. Even “smart” and intelligent people when devoid of wisdom can believe in all sorts of absurdities.
To fully understand what humans are, why we are, where are we going, and how we are going to get there, we need the Christian viewpoint. This viewpoint tells us to offer humanity a vision of a world made whole by the love of God, the reality of things unseen, and the understanding of our role and its relation to eternity and the love and nobility of every person created in the image of God. Without the acceptance of this truth, human life becomes one-dimensional, consumer-driven and pleasure seeking above anything else. Real happiness based on wisdom and truth grows from the love of God and neighbor, which gives us the strength and determination in facing life’s hard edges. An example of this is the holy way and joy of a mother linked to the gift of life from God to make a new child regardless of risk in bearing her child. This is also true for fathers who take responsibility for their family, protect and provide for them. Real love is never abstract.
Let us be renewed to God’s work, serve Him, spread His Word, and utilize the talents each of have to help others. Let us be renewed to inspire others no matter how far they may be from the Word and love of God, where they come from, how they look, and what other obstacles they face. Let us tell them that there is a divine purpose to this life and if they “ask, seek and knock,” they will be answered. God will put them in the right place, at the right time to accomplish the right mission that all Christians are called to complete; the winning of souls for Christ and saving our own. Let us turn from despair to hope. Let us not listen to those who urge retreat and compromise with the spirit of the world and its values. Today’s spiritual vacuum can be filled. Evil may spread its moral depravity and social shortsightedness throughout the land, but we know the only way forward is to proclaim the Truth. We continue to fight for the sanctity of life, the integrity of marriage and the dignity of the human person. All lives matter and all souls matter more.
“As Knights of Columbus, our principles of charity, unity and fraternity sum up our relationship with Christ and one another…not a return to self-centered living but a life…heightened and deepened in belief that the Lord is among us” (S.C.William Lori)
Wendell Jeanpierre Lecturer May – 2022