08 March 2010

The Reign of Christ Over Nations

"So long as Christ does not reign over nations, His influence over individuals remains superficial and precarious.  If it is true that the work of the apostolate consists in the conversion of individuals and that nations as such do not go to heaven, but souls, one by one, we must not forget, nevertheless, that the individual member of society lives under the never-ceasing influence of his environment, in which, if we may not say the he is submerged, he is, at least, deeply plunged.  If the environment is non-Catholic, it prevents him from enmbracing the faith or, if he has the faith, it tends to root out of his heart every vestige of belief.  If we imagine Catholic social institutions, with Our Lord no longer living in the hearts of the individual members of society, then religion has there become merely a displeasing signboard which will  soon be torn down.  But, on the other hand, try to convert individuals without Catholicizing the social institutions and your work is without stability.  The structure you erect in the morning will be torn down by others in the evening.  Is not the strategy of the enemies of God there to teach us a lesson?  They want to destroy the faith in the hearts of individuals, it is true, but they direct still more vigorous efforts to the elimination of religion from social institutions.  Even one defeat of God in this domain means the weakening, if not the ruin, of the faith in the souls of many."  from the Kingship of Christ according to Cardinal Pie of Poitiers, p.59

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