Monday, December 22, 2003

Philip Jenkins was anticipated 

"The Church militant on earth may be reduced to a handful of adherents, not many more than would fill an arena or local jail. The Christians of Europe may be reduced to a little band with no power to influence social development for a long period.... Until Catholic missionaries, from China or South America or Africa, return to preach the faith of our fathers to the lost barbarian tribes who are living amongst the ruins of ancient Europe."
   --Sigrid Undset, Stages on the Road, p. 265.

And this could well be said of the United States too, though any speculation about the future is uncertain. It does seem that the Church in the U.S. has turned a corner, and She will be stronger and more faithful in coming years; yet fidelity is no guarantee of numbers, still less of social influence. The power of the few--the professors, the entertainers, the sellers--to control the many is mighty and the illusion of democracy is well-maintained.

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