Culture Warning: The Winds Of Change Are Changing Into A Whiff Of Persecution
The winds of change have shifted to a whiff of persecution.
If there has been a growing resistance to Christianity, and particularly Catholicism, since the 1960s, that resistance is now taking the form of coercion in a troubling and growing number of situations.
In the United Kingdom, the government has attempted to force Catholic agencies to allow homosexual adoption. The Equality Act, due to come into effect in England, Wales, and Scotland in April, outlaws discrimination in the provision of services -- including adoption -- on the basis of sexual orientation.
In the U.S., several regions of the country have seen attempts at forcing Catholic hospitals to provide birth-control or "morning-after" pills -- in direct contravention of the Church's teachings and beliefs.
In Pennsylvania a school district disallowed a 14-year-old from dressing for Halloween in a Jesus costume. (The matter is now in court; devils and witches, of course, are fully admitted.)
In California, no less than Walter Cronkite appeared at a recent event for First Amendment First, which calls for houses of worship to stop endorsing political candidates and forbids tax dollars from going to any charity that "discriminates" in its hiring or requires people hold a certain faith to receive services.
In some cases, threats have made against church organizations for not employing those who are openly homosexual while Catholic nurses and pharmacists have been persecuted for not dispensing contraceptives or participating in abortions.
At William and Mary College, America's second-oldest college, the Cross has been taken down in the chapel while an art show for sex workers opened on campus. This is an institution founded by the Church of England.
The focus on knocking down believers in Christ is coinciding with the move, interestingly enough, at greater government control and to globalize religion.
In many parts of Canada, Europe, and the United States, saying anything negative about homosexuality is considered a "hate crime" -- raising the possibility that Vatican leaders themselves could one day be prosecuted. The same trend is afoot in Australia.
In New York, the city must pay for the travesty of a sex-change operation.
The U.S. military has likewise paid for such "medical" expenses -- and allows witches and satanists to openly practice, and even have access to their own "chaplain" (while regular chaplains are critically short in number).
In Germany, whether or not it is a direct religious challenge, the government has sought custody of children in a home-schooling family.
At times, it is the system of jurisprudence. In Quebec, Canada, the government has been forced by a court to pay for abortions.
Because one can't know the entire set of details in some cases, the label of "persecution" should be used in a sparing way. But the whiff of it there is. Bloggers working for a major presidential candidate, John Edwards, have demonstrated blatant disregard and in fact opprobrium for the Catholic faith -- in a way that would be inconceivable if directed at another faith.
In short, a number of cogs in the mechanism long feared by those who see a future world realignment and an anti-christian personage of evil are falling into place. In New York City, officials have prohibited smoking and even trans-fats from restaurants, and may soon declare it illegal to make racial epithets.
While there are certainly benefits in such regulation, it is demonstrating an uncomfortable level of government control at a time when there is also a major move toward monitoring individuals via new technology.
Most stark is the bold anti-christianity.
Churches are not just ignored or disdained any longer, but in some areas there has been an attempt to change the very things they do and believe.
The frontal attack on the beliefs of Christianity have been most visible in cultural phenomena such as The DaVinci Code -- which led many to believe that Christ married Mary Magdalene (and of course was not truly the Son of God) -- to the recent and equally farfetched claim, in a new documentary by a famous director (James Cameron, of the movie Titanic), that the coffin of Jesus has been located -- negating the idea, this Lenten season -- or at least attempting to negate the idea -- of the Resurrection.
At the same time, a church in Florida is led by a man who has his adherents tattooing themselves with the sign of the devil -- 666. Meanwhile, satanists have taken on a new, "respectable" look of ordinary business people.
They are "small" examples -- but growing in number.
In New York, the major cathedral for Episcopalians, St. John the Divine, has harbored New Age services (with gongs and solstice rituals) as well as organizations with ties to the United Nations and a group called Lucis Trust (once known as "Lucifer Trust," an offshoot of occult theosophy, until it changed its name in 1922).
Similar groups have met at the cathedral to endorse a new-age approach to world government and religion, often under the guise of eco-spirituality.
These are not mere eccentricities, and are chilling in their audacious patterns. While small slights to other religions, particularly Islam, are taken as cardinal sins, searing insult to the Mother Church are sloughed off as Catholics sit idly by, no longer as bothered because so many no longer partake of the Church -- which will prevail in the end but whose attendance has been dangerously decimated by secularism.
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