The man of yesterday, like that of today, without distinction of race, color of skin, culture, country and continent, is directed almost exclusively toward the possession and use of material goods. And in the more specific cultural context of western society, it is not exaggerating to affirm that man works, organizes and manages human, political, economic and commercial relationships, unleashes wars, produces arms of mass destruction, invades and conquers countries only or almost exclusively to extract and accumulate material riches from them, in support of his authority and dominance.
With the excuse of bringing democracy, peace and liberty the West has created chaos in many countries, above all in the Middle East. My judgment may be imprecise or exaggerated, however we cannot deny the present reality. Above all, Western culture has progressively organized itself as if God did not exist: many today have decided to do without God. As Nietzsche affirms, for many in the West, God is dead. And we are the ones who killed him, we are his assassins and our Churches are the crypts and tombs of God. A good number of the faithful do not go to them anymore to avoid smelling the putrefaction of God; but doing so, man does not know anymore either who he is or where he is going: there is a sort of return to paganism and idolatry; science, technology, money, power, freedom unbounded, pleasure without limit are our gods.
Robert Cardinal Sarah, launch of the German edition of his book, God or Nothing, Rome, 20 November 2015.
Think not that this plea for unity is born of an admission of weakness, or because I fear that the Church or religion is in danger. Certainly, the Church is not in
danger, for it has the divine assurance that Christ will be with it all days even to the consummation of the world. In vain will men look for the death of the undying, or the breaking of the Rock against which even the gates of hell shall not prevail. The Church that survived Neros and Julians, Domitians and barbarian invasions, will also live to sing requiems over Hitler and his fellow-dictators.
It is not the sanctuary that is in danger; it is civilization. It is not infallibility that may go down; it is personal rights. It is not the Eucharist that may pass away; it is freedom of conscience. It is not divine justice that may evaporate; it is the courts of human justice. It is not that God may be driven from his throne; it is that men may lose the meaning of home; it is not that the war may never end; it is that peace may never come. For peace on earth will come only to those who give glory to God! It is not the church that is in danger, it is the world!
Venerable Fulton J. Sheen, Seven Pillars of Peace, New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1945.
We may be a small country, but we are a determined people who have been called upon to play a rôle of world-wide significance. We Rhodesians have rejected the doctrinaire philosophy of appeasement and surrender. The decision which we have taken today is a refusal by Rhodesians to sell their birthright. And, even if we were to surrender, does anyone believe that Rhodesia would be the last target of the Communists in the Afro-Asian block? We have struck a blow for the preservation of justice, civilization, and Christianity; and in the spirit of this belief we have this day assumed our sovereign independence. God bless you all.
— Announcement of Unilateral Declaration of Independence, 11 November 1965.
We are mistaken if we think that in order to have European prosperity we need to come down with these illnesses [the diseases of the Western society]…
Among the requirements of the European community are pseudo-values. The EU looks like a teenager who is testing the limits of morality and needs a Christian education. Europe was built not on same-sex marriages, but on the respect for human dignity, the protection of human rights and freedoms, on honesty in politics and business. On these foundations Europe arose, but it has forgotten about it. These are the values which today the Church defends in our society. When it comes to the protection of life from its natural beginning to natural end, then it is the basis for the opposition to euthanasia, abortion, and other acts that violate the dignity of life.
Major Archbishop Sviatoslav Shevchuk, Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church.
(h/t to Rorate Cæli)