|Kremlin (left) and St. Basil's Cathedral (right)|
Largely unreported events (in the Greek media) took place in Moscow in early December when Patriarch Kirill, head of The Russian Orthodox Church hosted 380 Orthodox bishops from Russia and throughout the world, including representatives from the Slavic countries and the Near East, and ethnic Greek church leaders from Alexandria, Cyprus, Jerusalem and Albania... more>
Notably absent were Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew of Constantinople and Archbishop Ieronymos of Athens. This is largely being interpreted as a boycott. It would appear that Russia continues to align itself to become the spiritual and moral leader of the 21st century. Such an alignment, if successful, can only happen if Western Christendom, meaning both the Catholic Church and leading Western nations (Europe and Anglosphere) continue to abdicate this responsibility. The neglect of Western nations is painfully obvious and need not be pointed out here. The neglect of the Catholic Church is seen in the failure of Church leaders to discipline public heretics (both lay and religious). When Catholic politicians can vote for (and even lobby for) such things as abortion, contraception and same-sex "marriage," without any significant consequences for their actions, while a small number of Catholic clergy are able to publicly preach moral heresy, again without consequences, it becomes clear that what currently exists in the mainstream Catholic Church is a leadership vacuum. Not to worry, the problem will correct itself eventually, as the future of Catholicism is clearly traditional. The only youth that remain in the Catholic Church are traditional youth, and this is true for both clergy and laity, but these young people have a long way to go before they rise to Church leadership positions and it won't be in time to save the West.
Geopolitically and economically, the West is driven by the Anglosphere (UK, Australia, New Zealand, US and Canada). The US is the primary engine in that driving force and there is no doubt that the US is in decline. While a feeling of optimism sweeps the US right now with a newly energised tax code, as well as a new emphasis on immigration control and better trade deals (a generally positive turn of events), these changes may be enough to give America another decade of economic boom, but they won't be enough to stop the overall decline. The long-term trajectory of the United States is downward, and this is primarily due to the contraception mentality of Anglos (English-speaking people) coupled with a loss of religious direction and purpose. Anglo-culture is stagnating and with that Anglo-nations are gradually declining. The British Empire died almost a century ago, the American "Empire" will die in this century. This is why American politicians increasingly turn to Latino culture for their salvation. Anglo culture is hopelessly Secular and Protestant, and both Secular and Protestant cultures are hopelessly contraceptive. The irony of our Secular and Protestant governments in the Anglosphere is that they must increasingly turn toward Catholic and Muslim culture to combat the contraceptive mentality that is destroying their nations. The European Union is driven by the German engine, and Germany is (for now) sold on Muslim migration to keep Europe's population and fertility gap filled. America had been sold on Latin American (Catholic) migration for the same reason, but now that the door is closing on that, American politicians will soon find themselves between a rock and hard place. Meanwhile, something else is happening...
Since the Bretton Woods Conference in 1944, the US dollar has reigned supreme as the world’s default currency. In 1944, the US held more gold than any other country, but in 1971, the US went off the gold standard, and since then, the dollar has been a fiat currency. The US has become increasingly cavalier in its abuse of the dollar—often at the expense of other countries.
Russia and China dealt with the latest round of strong-arm tactics by the US to adhere to the petrodollar by creating the largest energy agreement in history. This and all trade between the two countries will be settled in the ruble and the yuan. Russia has since been active in creating agreements with other fuel customers, also bypassing the petrodollar.
In creating these agreements, the Asian powers have unofficially announced the demise of the petrodollar. For decades, the US has applied its muscle to other countries, using the petrodollar. So, the Sino-Russian agreement stands, not only to end the petrodollar monopoly, but to create a decline in US power over the world, generally.... more>
Do not underestimate the cosy relationship between Russia and China. They're working together to undermine the US dollar and they've been at it for a while. The problem is, when the United States went off the gold standard, we effectively switched to the oil standard (petrodollar), using diplomacy and military coercion to ensure that oil is always traded in US dollars. This has allowed the US to amass an enormous amount of debt, and print money to pay the interest, with virtual impunity. The value of the dollar doesn't plummet because it's tied to the international oil trade. That is slowly beginning to change, which means that, in time, the dollar will be worth significantly less. Russia and China's strategy is to slowly "bleed" America out by letting us "slit our own wrists." This is in combination with taking the moral high ground, trying to unite the fractured Orthodox communion, rebuilding Orthodox churches in Russia, teaching Orthodox Christianity in public schools, and rejecting Western influences such as acceptance of homosexuality and same-sex "marriage." What's the long-term plan? The Russians are hoping to establish a new global realignment with themselves at the head.
Take note of the countries in green. These have signalled a willingness to trade oil in other currencies besides the petrodollar. They are not all on board with it yet, but they keep their options open. If all of these countries flipped, overnight, and started trading oil in rubles or yuan, the US petrodollar would collapse instantly, our money would be worthless, and Washington DC wouldn't be able to afford to even feed our military, let alone keep it supplied with guns and ammunition. Building fancy stealth bombers and new aircraft carriers would be out of the question. Within a matter of weeks, the US could possibly be reduced to the poor agricultural nation we once were in the late 18th to early 19th centuries. The transformation would be just as shocking as it would be permanent. America's economic demise has been in the works ever since the US dollar went off the gold standard.
But not so fast! It's not over till it's over and there is a way forward, not only for the US but for the whole West. However, since America and Germany are the driving engines of the West, it's up to these two nations to turn the tide and change our fate. As it stands right now, Germany is a mess (spiritually and morally speaking) and it's difficult to see them turning things around anytime in the near future. America is a little different. We actually could change things considerably. Here is how it could be done.
Right now America and Germany have a tremendous amount of influence on the Vatican. I know that it's not kosher to say such things and nobody wants to admit this, but its true. Why? It's simple really. America and Germany are the economic/political force driving the Western world right now. The UK once had an influential role in EU politics, but following the Brexit that is no longer the case. The UK is a fully Anglosphere country now, and it is in the Anglosphere that the UK will find its future. That's actually a very good thing for them, though admittedly about half of Brits don't realise it yet. The European Union is a German project now. Without Germany the EU is nothing. With Germany it is everything. Right now Germany is 100% committed to the cultural suicide of Europe for the sake of economic stability and political correctness, so it's in the UK's long-term best interest to align with the Anglosphere.
There is more. Russia isn't as strong as she is projecting herself to be. First of all, reviving Orthodox Christianity is probably the only thing Putin is doing right and it's his one and only shot at ensuring any kind of a long-term future for Russia. What is sad is that he feels the need to undermine the US, but let's face it, our country hasn't been too friendly toward him either. Russia has the same problem as the US in regards to demographics. Their fertility rate is way too low, and Russia has been forced to restrict abortions (another good thing) to slow the decline. Putin knows that Christianity is the only way out of this, and he's doing as much as a politician can to help it. It won't be enough, but at least he's trying, which is more than I can say for most Western politicians. As bad as things are in Russia, they're a lot worse in China. The Chinese government is about to face demographic armageddon! Their one-child policy has resulted in sex-selective abortions for 40+ years! Since boys are more valued in their culture, this has left them with an entire generation wherein men outnumber women by about 33 million. As a result, tens of millions of men have been removed from the reproductive population. China is about to face a demographic catastrophe as this generation ages and there aren't enough young people to support them. Knowing how communists work, it's likely that euthanasia will become commonplace in China within a couple decades. So the point here is that just because America and the West are in really bad shape, that doesn't mean we're alone. Russia and China are in bad shape too, and that's a big reason why they're trying to undermine us.
So what's the answer? Do we just throw up our hands in despair? No. There is a solution to this, and while going back to the "good ol' days" is not an option, we can salvage our culture and our civilisation. Furthermore, we can do this without having to be adversarial with Russia and China.
America and Germany's influence on the Vatican is not only a reality but its painfully obvious. The homosexual lobby in Rome is directly related to money and influence coming in from America and Germany. It is this same homosexual lobby that is primarily responsible for the poor leadership coming out of Rome, coupled with poor catechesis and poor liturgy all over the Church -- it's all connected! Germany is lost -- for now -- but America is not. In the United States, we are seeing a resurgence of a traditional Catholic re-awakening.
You see, the implosion of Christianity in the West is primarily a Protestant implosion. Protestantism is dying. Protestantism is going through its death cycle. Protestantism is on the way out. And the Catholic Church has only suffered insofar as it has embraced Protestantism. As a former Protestant, I can testify that Protestantism is on its last leg. It's going down, and so long as Catholic parishes and dioceses continue to embrace Protestant ways of doing church, they will go down with it. That's the problem with American Catholicism these days. Too many parishes and dioceses have embraced the Protestant method of doing church, and as a result, they're haemorrhaging members, closing parishes, and are in a state of controlled decline.
I'm sounding the alarm here folks. Protestantism is dying, and Catholic parishes and dioceses will go down with it so long as they embrace the Protestant way of doing church.
It's time to give up on the religion that has failed the West. Protestantism is that religion, and if you don't believe me, ask some Protestants. Even many of them have given up on Protestantism.
The rise of Evangelical megachurches and non-denominational Christianity in the latter half of the 20th-century is a sign that Protestantism is on its way out. These churches did not just pop up out of nowhere. They are, rather, the product of a massive exodus from mainline Protestant denominations. Granted, they retain a shell of Protestant character, because that's all they know, but they are (in many ways) a rejection of traditional, mainline, Protestant denominations. There is a reason for this. Mainline Protestantism has embraced the sexual morality of the world and has become little more than a spiritualised version of popular culture. Those Protestants who still cling to traditional Christian morality left these denominations in droves. Where did they go? Well most of them went to Evangelical and non-denominational churches, and that is where most of them remain. However, even the non-denominational churches are beginning to realise that they can't go on in their present form. A few of them are even embracing liturgy as a way to rediscover their Christian culture, and I predict this will become more commonplace in the future. Evangelicals and non-denominational Christians are looking for something more, and they know they can't find it in the mainline Protestant denominations they've left behind. So if Protestants are abandoning the Protestant way of doing Church, maybe Catholics should too.
Artificial contraception is a Protestant sexual morality. Nobody can reasonably deny this because the Catholic Church has officially rejected it outright. One can point to the fact that a large number of Catholics in the West practice artificial contraception, but I would like to counter by saying that insofar as they do it, they are embracing Protestant sexual morality. It's not Catholic. Everybody knows that. Protestantism is the only type of Christianity that ever gave blanket acceptance of the practice. If you're Catholic, and you're practising artificial contraception, you've embraced Protestant sexual ethics. You're behaving like a Protestant in your bedroom.
The only way to save the West is to reject Protestantism. It has failed to stand up to the militant secularisation of the culture, and it has failed to stand up to the militant sexualisation of our people. It has degraded wives, by allowing them to become sex-objects for their husbands through the use of artificial contraception. It has embraced rampant divorce and remarriage without question. Wherever Protestantism has been established as the cultural norm, Secularism follows, and wherever Secularism follows the culture declines. Protestantism is weak, fractured, and wholly unable to lead in the modern world. By embracing the Protestant way of doing church, the Catholic Church has moored itself to a sinking ship. Every parish and diocese that has done this will soon discover it the hard way. The only way to save us is to untether ourselves from Protestantism entirely and let it sink. Catholics have to learn how to be Catholic again.
The shocking truth about ecumenism is that the one and only time it has worked with Protestants (resulting in unity) is when Protestants have wholeheartedly rejected Protestant theology and embraced the Catechism of the Catholic Church. This happened with the Ordinariates for former Anglicans. So far it hasn't happened with any other Protestant communions. The moral of the story is this. Ecumenism with Protestants works only when Protestants decide to stop being Protestants. Again, if Protestants are abandoning the Protestant way of doing church, why on earth would Catholics want to embrace it? It's time to cut the moorings and break free. Protestantism is sinking and pulling the Catholic Church down with her. We need to cut the ropes and let it go. We can remain ecumenically open to Protestants if they're willing to do like the Anglicans and become Catholic, but otherwise, we shouldn't compromise our own identity to accommodate them.
The West can only be saved if it becomes Catholic again, and that is going to have to happen primarily in the United States because Germany isn't going to change anytime in the near future. France is the only country that can save Europe and it can only do it by embracing its Catholic roots, restoring its monarchy and then jockeying for leadership in the European Union. That is beyond our control, and only the French youth can work toward that goal. In the meantime its all up to America (as usual) and in particular -- Catholic Americans! Here's the strategy...
- If your parish has embraced the Protestant way of doing church, then you need to have a chat with your priest and parish council. You might even need to get on the parish council. The idea here is to move your parish back toward a more traditional way of being Catholic. The new vernacular liturgy is fine, but it should be celebrated in the most traditional way possible and parish catechesis should be reviewed to make sure it's solidly Catholic.
- If you find number 1 to be impossible, you're going to have to leave for a more traditional Catholic parish. Hopefully, you can find a more traditional parish nearby, but if you cant, I would recommend a Latin mass parish (non-SSPX). This can be done by calling your diocese chancery and asking if the diocese offers a traditional Latin mass anywhere. If so, use that parish. If not, try the Priestly Fraternity of St Peter (FSSP) here. Now if Latin is not your thing, and you prefer to worship in English, you could try one of the Divine Worship masses offered by Ordinariate communities, which are usually very traditional and take the Catholic faith very seriously. You need not be a member of the Ordinariate to become a member of an Ordinariate community. To find one near you, try this map from the Anglicanorum Coetibus Society (ACS).
- Stop acting like a Protestant! It doesn't work. I come from a family that has been Protestant for 500 years. Of my immediate clan, only four households are still going to church every Sunday, and two of those (ours and an aunt) are now Catholic. The other two are Evangelical, and as I said, Evangelicalism is a rejection of mainline Protestantism. Nobody in my immediate family has remained in traditional Protestantism. The best way for Catholics to save their families and our nation is to just start acting like Catholics!
- Reject the Protestant morality of artificial contraception. Protestants have destroyed Protestant-majority countries by contracepting their future away. If you're a Catholic and you've jumped on this bandwagon -- stop it! This mentality has not served them well, and it's destroyed their future. Don't let it destroy our future too!
- Learn the Catholic faith well, and then teach it to your children. If you need help, I've provided that for you HERE. You can't rely on Catholic parishes and schools to do your job for you. Educating your children in the Catholic faith is YOUR job, not your priest's job. They're your children not his. You are responsible for their souls. You are responsible to teach them the faith, and if you don't know how, it's your responsibility to learn it. Like I said, I've provided some help for you HERE.
- Understand that if you're living in a Protestant-majority country, your children probably won't be. By the time they reach your age, Protestantism will have virtually annihilated itself with contraception and religious migration. Most of those Protestants will have become non-religious by then. The demographic shift will go from a Protestant-majority nation to a Secular/Catholic split. Protestants will become irrelevant. This will likely be the case in the United States as well. The religious future of America will be a split between a Catholic-Secular majority. Protestants will become a helpless minority. We Catholics might be able to rely on them occasionally for help on political and social issues, but they will no longer be a driving force in American politics. We can expect all of this to happen within the next decade or so.
- Network with other like-minded Catholics. This will be easier if you're involved in a more traditional parish or community. There are also online communities that can help. One is the Resistance program organised by Church Militant. Click here to learn more.
As protestantised Catholic parishes and dioceses collapse in the years ahead, sinking along with Protestant churches, the characteristic makeup of Catholicism in the United States will change. It will become more traditional and it will become more Latino. The Latino element is just demographic in nature. As Anglos continue to contracept themselves into decline, Latinos will step in to fill the void. However, some Anglos (English-speakers) who embrace Catholic tradition will survive the decline. This is a necessary transformation. As America becomes more traditionally Catholic, the American influence on the Vatican will become more traditionally Catholic too. This will help tremendously. The protestantised German influence on the Vatican is not likely to change, but it is likely to decline, as Church membership in Germany is plummeting. This may all seem like some grandiose scheme, spanning decades, but actually, we're looking at some radical transformations in the American landscape in only ten years -- especially for the US Catholic Church. Therefore, it's imperative that we act now.
In the end, I see how this could end in a much more positive way. If American Catholics will just ditch the whole protestantised parish model, and start acting like Catholics again, and in turn, Rome sees a lot more money and influence coming from a more traditionally Catholic America, it will cause Rome to act in a more traditional way. Then Putin's Russia will no longer have a monopoly on offering the world a Christian alternative to Western decadence. That should "shake things up" geopolitically speaking. I don't know if it will stop the rivalry between Russia and the US, but it could loosen the tension between us.
Lastly, pray the Rosary, because Our Lady of Fatima warned us that Russia would play a key role in the events leading to the Chastisement of God upon the whole world. Pray the Rosary for your families, for your parishes, and for our people. If the churches of Rome and Moscow ever reach ecumenical reunion, it could change everything.
Shane Schaetzel is an author of Catholic books and a columnist for Christian print magazines and online publications. He is a freelance writer and the creator of 'CatholicInTheOzarks.com.' Your support is what makes essays like this possible. This essay and all of Shane's Internet resources come to you (ad-free) thanks to the generosity of benefactors. Please consider becoming a benefactor.
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