Founder’s QuoteJanuary 5, 2022
Saint of the Day for January 5: St. John NeumannJanuary 5, 2022
By Dr. Jeff Mirus, Catholic Culture, Jan 04, 2022
Jeffrey Mirus holds a Ph.D. in intellectual history from Princeton University. A co-founder of Christendom College, he also pioneered Catholic Internet services. He is the founder of Trinity Communications and CatholicCulture.org.
The Archbishop of Dublin, Dermot Farrell, has announced that “radical change is coming in the Church”. For the Church in many places—and certainly for the Church in Dublin—this is very good news. Of course, it isn’t really news; it is a hope. Dublin needs hope because (to speak only of critical numbers) its 1.5 million Catholics are served by 312 active priests, 139 of whom are over 70 and 116 of whom are on loan from other places. Moreover, Dublin is the largest city and the capital of Ireland, a nation which has over the past generation played rapid “catch up” to Europe in the adoption of secular national values. So clearly the Church in Dublin is in crisis.
On the other hand, the Church in Dublin is hardly alone. Strong, healthy dioceses are the exception rather than the rule throughout the West, where social, political (and often even ecclesiastical) pressures against Christian fidelity have risen dramatically over the past seventy-five years, roughly since the close of World War II. Historically-speaking, of course, these pressures have been building slowly over the past five hundred years. The question is how to respond to them: How to build a Catholic culture that counteracts these pressures with an attractiveness that continuously draws others in. …