"The times, they are a-changing", Bob Dylan crooned, and so indeed they are. Reading an article on the issue of "gay marriage" on the Catholic Herald website, I noticed a very good observation: that the Church now sees that "we’ve gone beyond the point at which we are simply defending traditional marriage: more and more, this is seen as a question of defending our liberty to do it." The battle is no longer to try and preserve the moral order, but to have the freedom to believe in a moral order. That is where we are now, and that's frightening.
Despite all the talk of pluralism and tolerance, which we all know at this stage to be mere cosmetic and blah by the secularists, the Church is increasingly being polarised for her belief that there is an objective moral order. We all know that attack has been going on for some time, but never before has it felt like we are really on the run. For the first time in my life I feel like we Catholics are now being chased by the dogs - like the poor Jews in the streets of Nazi Germany. As they were denied citizenship and indeed basic humanity for their faith and ethnicity, so too Catholics for our adherence to Judeo-Christian morality.
And to be honest, I think we should feel exhilarated by that. It is in such times that we Christians flourish. The sheep are divided from the goats, and the Church gets her act together, rallying the troops and raising the standard of Jesus Christ. The times are indeed a-changing, and it is time to let go of the defeatist, soft-core Catholicism which has been the hallmark of too many since Vatican II. The time has come for hard-core witness and fidelity. My colleague over at the St Genesius blog reveals how few Irish Catholics objected to our Taoiseach's disgraceful attack on the Pope - surely he must be told in no uncertain terms by faithful Catholics that his unwarranted vitriol was not music to the ears of all Irish Catholics - that many of us are ashamed of him and want to distance ourselves from his inaccurate remarks.
Time to get the finger out, methinks. Stop running and turn around to face the aggressors. As Scripture tells us, when we stand up to the devil he runs away from us: if such cowardice is noted of the prince of darkness, then it is even more so of his minions.