Today is the feast of Blessed Titus Brandsma, our Carmelite brother who was martyred in Dachau for his Catholic faith and for his work in proclaiming the truth in the face of the National Socialist tyranny. Blessed Titus was a member of the Carmelites of the Ancient Observance, who worked as a professor and journalist in Holland.
He understood the Nazis to be pagans who were destroying not only human lives and religious faith, but ideologues who in their attempt to redefine humanity according to their ideology, were destroying humanity itself. In the Office of Readings for today we read from his writings in which he upheld the dignity of man, a God-given dignity, and warned of the dangers of subjecting that dignity to a political or social philosophy.
Sadly what Blessed Titus fought against, and the Allies won victory over, has remerged in the very countries that opposed the Nazi ideology. Western society has now adopted the thinking of Hitler and his minions though many deny it. The atrocities that the Nazis carried out now have the protection of law in many of our countries, and the redefining of man and his relationships according to a pagan ideology, an ideology of false progress - also rooted in Hegelianism, is the agenda many, if not most, of our political representatives are working hard to achieve. As with the Nazi propaganda machine our media today have an important role in promoting this new pagan agenda.
We need Blessed Titus's intercession and example in these times. May he help us face the challenges that are now being presented to us, help us remember that Christ in our refuge and strength, and that at the end of the day the battle we now fight will be won - we need only keep faith.
Blessed Titus pray for us, pray for our media, pray for our governments.