Living through an Apocalypse, by Robert Royal

Saint of the Day for May 8: St. Peter of Tarentaise
May 8, 2023
Our Incurious Bishops, by Eric Sammons 
May 8, 2023

*Image: Allegory of the Catholic Faith by Johannes Vermeer, ca. 1670-72 [The MET, New York]. Vermeer, a Catholic convert, was arguably the greatest painter of the Dutch Golden Age. This work, done when Mass was illegal in Holland, is thought to refer, in part, to the celebration of Eucharist in “hidden churches,” i.e., private homes.

By Robert Royal,  The Catholic Thing, May 8, 2023

Robert Royal is editor-in-chief of The Catholic Thing and president of the Faith & Reason Institute in Washington, D.C. His most recent books are Columbus and the Crisis of the West and A Deeper Vision: The Catholic Intellectual Tradition in the Twentieth Century.

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When the history of our times comes to be written, scholars won’t be able to ignore how much recent years have been marked by widespread feelings of apocalypse. That’s, of course, assuming that there are any historians who survive. Because from threats of nuclear war to climate change, from AI (artificial intelligence) to the digital technologies damaging our very bodies and brains, from the virtual erasure of the sex “binary” (i.e., women and men) to a media hell-bent on encouraging social division, it at least feels like the radical end – of something. Maybe everything. And not just for eccentric sects gathering on hilltops, waiting for the end. There’s a sense that the next year-and-a-half or so will be decisive both in American electoral politics (and society), and in the way the Synod on Synodality will affect the self-understanding of the One, Holy, Roman, Catholic, and Apostolic Church.   …

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