“How many are they who live in union with the Church during this moment that is tragic as the Passion was tragic, this crucial moment of history when all mankind is choosing to be for Christ or against Christ?” Prof. Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira asked in his celebrated Via Sacra1 back in 1951, shortly after the end of the World War II, as the world was ushered into an era of optimism and ‘the good life.’
A Choice for or Against Christ
This choice for Christ or against Him has been continuously placed before mankind over these last 60 years with the spread of divorce, abortion, and now the “normalization” of homosexual practice. How many choose to stand with Christ and thereby accept persecution, ridicule, ostracism and the scorn of the world?
Unfortunately, with the recent referendum in Ireland on same-sex “marriage”, the answer was again against Christ, and this parody of matrimony was approved by over 60% of the vote.
Although the terms of the plebiscite were about the legalization of “marriage” between people of the same sex, what was actually at stake was a choice between the Law of God and its rejection. It is, therefore, a choice for Christ or against Him. For, as the Divine Master said, “Whoever has my commandments and observes them is the one who loves me” (John 14:21) and “He that is not with me, is against me” (Matt. 12:30; Luke 11:23).
Natural Law, Inscribed in the Human Heart
Indeed, man knows the Commandments of God’s Law not only by Revelation but also through the Natural Law inscribed in his heart (cf. Rom. 2:14-15). The Commandments are not optional and therefore cannot be accepted or rejected without consequence. This is because these Commandments are a fruit of God’s Wisdom, Justice, and Holiness. To reject them is to reject God Himself. This rejection is a sin, an offense against the Creator.
A Reality Obvious in Human Nature
God created man, gave him woman as a companion, and commanded them to have children and fill the whole earth. This is why they unite in marriage and the two become one flesh (Gen. 1:28; 2:21-24).
This reality is evident in human nature, in its anatomy, physiology, rationality, and the way it expresses affection. Therefore, marriage is a natural union elevated by Christ to the dignity of a sacrament, and can only take place between a man and a woman in order to achieve its proper end.
The Heroic Struggle of a Handful of Faithful Catholics
The fact that a nation with a glorious Catholic past has chosen against Christ in a referendum is extremely tragic even if a considerable minority has remained faithful. And one cannot fail to underline the heroic actions of groups like the Irish Society for Christian Civilisation, whose young volunteers fought boldly in public squares for the good cause by enlightening the undecided while facing taunts and even aggression from agitators of the homosexual movement.
The massive propaganda for a ‘yes’ to same-sex “marriage” received not only moral but also financial support from around the world. It was a very well organized operation, aiming not only at Ireland but with a view to influence other countries.
A Conspicuous Absence
There was only one force capable of countering the huge international homosexual lobby supported by the political and cultural left: the Catholic Church. If Her leaders had joined the fray with resolution and courage by mobilizing the faithful around the immutable principles of morality, promoting public prayers, and invoking the Lord God of Hosts with faith and fervor, the result would have been altogether different.
Unfortunately, this mobilization in defense of the principles of Natural Law and the Decalogue came neither from the Irish bishops, nor from Rome. With a few honorable exceptions, there was softness, silence, ambiguity.
A Nation’s Collective Sin
Thus, the collective sin of a nation was fully perpetrated with the support of and the indifference of the Christian West.
This sin was gradually prepared over centuries of moral liberalism and ever greater acceptance of egalitarian principles, as Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira expounds in his masterful work, Revolution and Counter-Revolution.2 The egalitarian frenzy that ensued has gone so far as to deny even the physical, biological, and psychological differences between men and women by creating the so-called “gender theory.” The supposed same-sex “marriage” and “transgenderism” are mere consequences of this delirium.
Now then, St. John tells us that he that sin belongs to the devil (1 John 3:8). By accepting a sin that cries out to Heaven such as the sin against nature, according to the classical formula of the catechism, the devil increases his power over apostate humanity.
“Our Wrestling is not Against Flesh and Blood”
Thus, the struggle in defense of the principles of morality against the homosexual dictatorship is not just one between men: “Our wrestling is not against flesh and blood; but against principalities and powers, against the rulers of the world of this darkness, against the spirits of wickedness in the high places” (Eph. 6:12).
Therefore, this struggle must be fought on two levels: on the natural level against egalitarian principles and sensuality, and on the supernatural level, against diabolical action.
“Resist Him Strong in the Faith”
Therefore, St. Peter’s advice becomes ever more relevant and urgent: “Be sober and vigilant. Your opponent the devil is prowling around like a roaring lion looking for [someone] to devour” (1 Pet. 5:8-9).
We thus need to watch and pray (Matt. 26:41), to have courage and combativeness and employ all the natural and supernatural means the Creator has placed at our disposal to fight the powers of darkness.
“Take unto You the Armor of God”
We must not give up the fight because of the devil’s victory in a referendum in which the very foundations of the moral law, and therefore submission to Our Lord Jesus Christ were at stake. On the contrary, the Apostle Saint Paul exhorts us: “Therefore take unto you the armor of God, that you may be able to resist in the evil day, and to stand in all things perfect” (Eph. 6:13).
“She Shall Crush” the Serpent’s Head
In His magnanimity, God often employs His own creatures in the fight against the devil. So it was that, faithful to Divine Grace, St. Michael and his angels overcame Satan and the rebellious angels in the great heavenly battle: “And that great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, who is called the devil and Satan, who seduces the whole world; and he was cast unto the earth, and his angels were thrown down with him” (Apoc. 12:9).
Likewise, God put a complete enmity between the woman, that is the Mother of the Redeemer, and the serpent, so that, through the Passion and Death of her Son, “she shall crush” the serpent’s head (cf. Gen. 3:15).
In the present struggle we should therefore have recourse to the intercession of Mary Most Holy, to whom God has given power over the spirits of darkness, confident in the victory promised at Fatima: “Finally, my Immaculate Heart will triumph.”
- Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira, The Way of the Cross, Eighth Station, at https://www.tfp.org/tfp-home/books/the-way-of-the-cross.html
- At https://www.tfp.org/tfp-home/books/revolution-and-counter-revolution-v15-1370.html