Wherever the Church acts, She plays a central role in combatting modern errors. Thus, even in these secular times, the left cannot refrain from its irrational wrath against the Church. Because She exists, even in a state of crisis, the left finds ways to attack, vilify and calumniate Her.
If the present problems in the Church prove insufficient for these attacks, the left will look to the past. It will conjure up false accusations to frame the Church as evil.
Presenting the “Evidence”
The recent “discovery” of the already-known locations of the graves of Indian children near Catholic boarding schools in Canada is just the latest smear against the Church. The unmarked graves are presented as evidence of supposed cruelty and “cultural genocide.”
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The graves prove nothing. They attest to the high mortality rate of children back then, not a Catholic model of systemic abuse and killing of children. If anything, they point to shortcomings in government regulations that mandated such graves.
However, the media spread the leftist narrative that the graves point to the Church as an instrument of anti-indigenous actions. Critics turn these schools into sites of cultural genocide. Their administrators are convenient culprits since they cannot defend themselves. Media reports support their claims by presenting austere pictures of well-mannered Indian schoolchildren in Western clothes as evidence of forced cultural cruelty.
The Hypocrisy of the Left
This critique of the Church reeks of hypocrisy. Leftists shake in rage at the natural deaths of hundreds of children over decades yet celebrate women’s so-called right to “choose” the killing of tens of thousands of unborn (and unburied) Canadian children, one-fifth of all pregnancies, through procured abortion.
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The same atheist left that cares nothing about Catholic rites erupts in indignant rage in defense of forgotten indigenous rituals. Indeed, what can be said about the present ripped jeans and t-shirt culture that has done much more to deprive present Indians (and all peoples) of their culture than bygone Catholic schools?
Wherever leftist philosophies prevail, their egalitarian principles destroy all culture. Thus, secular liberal governments progressively destroy indigenous cultures, not the Church. Communism destroyed Russian culture. Mao annihilated Chinese civilization. Postmodernity is now canceling the surviving remnants of modernity and challenging all cultural identity.
The Real Target
Thus, the real target in the Canadian school travesty is the Church, which finds Herself put on trial because she insisted upon being a witness to the Truth.
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Of course, the Church is not the colonizing institution now projected in Canada. Indeed, the missionaries always defended the Indians against decadent Western culture influenced by Enlightenment thought. Indian tribes often begged Church officials to send “Black robes” to teach them about the one true God. History shows how the Church preserved Indian cultures by committing their languages to writing and integrating their customs into Christian civilization.
Wherever the Church has gone, it has enriched cultures by purging them of harmful elements contrary to natural law—human sacrifice, cannibalism, slavery, infanticide and superstition. With Her commitment to improving the spiritual good of people, the Church has always enhanced the material welfare of those She evangelizes. She brings schools, universities, agriculture, medical care and science.
The testimony of history is clear even to the most rabid leftists should they desire to acknowledge the truth.
Zeal for Souls
The Church’s real “crime” is her zeal for souls. The Church is persecuted because She wishes to do good to all peoples. She is hated because She has obeyed the Redeemer’s great commission: “Going therefore, teach ye all nations; baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you” (Matt. 28:19–20).
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The left especially hates the Divine Mandate because it affirms the role of the Church as the guardian of the Truth and path to salvation. From her earliest days, the Church brought the light of Christ to peoples, extricating them from the darkness of savage paganism. In the words of Saint Remigius to King Clovis and the sixth century Franks he converted, the Church told all pagan nations: “Burn what you adored, and adore what you burned.” Peoples everywhere embraced the Church’s liberating, not oppressive message of eternal life.
The Canadian missions were no different. They took care of the body and the soul of those in their charge. They gave priority to the spiritual over the material, the supernatural over the natural. Those children who died of natural causes were first baptized so that they might be saved. The pictures of First Communion ceremonies at the schools used as proof of exploitation actually show the opposite: the Church’s tender solicitude for their innocent souls.
Tearing Down All Things Christian
In its present stage of radicalization, the left hates everything connected to the Church and Western civilization. Thus, it seeks to destroy “Western” logic, structures, and anything remotely associated with Christianity. In addition to burning down Catholic churches (serving Indian congregations), radical activists are tearing down statues of Queen Victoria, Queen Elizabeth II and other non-Catholic figures simply because they represent the West. The left wants to suppress the West, which it accuses of cultural genocide.
Thus, the Church is an obstacle to this process and, therefore, a prime target of the left’s assault. The more decadent and immoral present society becomes, the greater is the Church’s appeal to those starved of all things spiritual. For this reason, the attacks on the Church are ever more intense and focused on destroying Her influence everywhere.
Making Catholics Renounce the Divine Mandate
The Indian children grave “discovery” incident in Canada is merely a pretext to manifest the rage of those who hate the Church and all things civilized. However, the most sinister aspect of the present offensive against the Catholic Church in Canada is how it creates an emotional climate that intimidates Catholics.
Thus, the left’s fury causes Catholics to grovel in the face of the attacks, issuing improper apologies for supposed “oppression” and “crimes.” Bishops, priests and laity trip over each other to see who can express the greatest sorrow. In this way, the left controls the debate, inserting the Church into its narrative of class struggle. The new Catholic leadership declares itself ashamed and rejects the Divine Mandate. It timidly suggests that no one needs to be taught and baptized.
Catholics must never renounce the Divine Mandate. They should proclaim it from the rooftops. The real culprits in the Canadian case are not past Catholic educators but modern progressives who have failed the Indian populations with their misguided government programs and fake concern. They want to turn the native peoples into liberal images of themselves.
They accuse Catholics of what they did to the Indians themselves. And now progressives seek to extend their nefarious action to all Catholics by suppressing the way of salvation.
Catholics must not be afraid to denounce this sinister narrative that will thrust the Americas in a downward spiral to neo-barbarism and paganism. This offensive is yet another episode in the long history of the attacks on the indestructible Church. In the end, though, the Church shall prevail. She always does.
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