Tuesday, December 18, 2012

The Catholic Church always prevails: a historic fact

The gates of hell shall never prevail against my Church, so proclaimed Jesus Christ who speaks the truth.

Christ's mystical body, his Catholic Church, always prevails against all odds thrown against it.

This is historic fact.

The Roman empire persecuted the Catholic Church and burnt Christians at the stake. A few centuries after, the Roman empire converted to Christianity and Europe became Christendom, a haven of light, building the university system, bringing about the birth of modern science, the Renaissance arts, the hospital system, international law, the human rights movement, and many other precious contributions to humankind.

Napoleon declared that he will destroy the Church, and took Pope Pius VII prisoner. After Waterloo, Pius VII returned to Rome in triumph and took care of Napoleon and his family while Napoleon was in prison.

Prussia waged a ferocious culture war on the Catholic Church in the 19th century called the Kulturkampf. By the mid-20th century, Prussia was no more. And today, Bavaria, one of the targets of the Kulturkampf, is the original home of the present Pope, Benedict XVI, who with his brilliance and simplicity is re-evangelizing the world.

Catholics suffered violent persecutions in Korea in the 19th century. Now, over the past 10 years, Catholicism is the fastest growing religion, having grown by 70%.

Anti-Catholicism has been the called the "deepest held bias" throughout the history of America and its "last acceptable prejudice". However, Catholicism is the single largest Christian denomination in the United States, and it has the fourth largest Catholic population in the world.

During the martial law years, Ferdinand Marcos arrested many Catholic church personnel, raided church offices, and closed down its radio stations. In 1986, Catholic priests, nuns, and laity, instigated by Cardinal Sin, led the historic EDSA revolution that toppled the dictatorship, making "people power" the world's preferred way of radical but peaceful government transition.

While the dictatorship of relativism holds sway over the land, Christians have envisaged that it will one day fall like a house of cards. While the secular culture of death seem to advance, John Paul the Great has seen this millennium to bring about a new springtime of Christianity. This new springtime will surely come, Benedict XVI is fully convinced, if we Christians remain faithful to prayer, the sacraments, and evangelization and rediscover the beauty of praying with scripture.

God, the owner of the universe, did not come with pomp and majesty. He came as a child, whose victory lies in truth, love and humility. Thus he wins, through his Church, his body, throughout the centuries.