Culture of Life
My dear faithful,
God owns man
God made man. He gave him life and endowed him with an intellect and a will to know, love and serve Him in this world. Man is God’s creature. Every man is owned by God and only has the use of those goods which form intrinsic parts of his body and soul. He is only God’s steward over these things for the purpose of attaining heaven.
God owns man not only as his Creator, He has a second claim to ownership as his Redeemer. By His Incarnation, Passion, Death, Resurrection and Ascension, God redeemed mankind from the slavery of sin (the Objective Redemption). He made possible that supernatural finality in individual souls (the Subjective Redemption) which was lost through Original Sin. And then, if a man arrives at that supernatural finality – if he be subjectively redeemed by receiving sanctifying grace – God owns a man as his Father by adoption too.
Culture of life
God’s ownership of man makes human life sacred: sacred, not only from the moment of conception, but doubly sacred on account of the Objective Redemption and then thrice sacred if he be the recipient of sanctifying grace and become the living Temple of the Holy Ghost.
A man should hold his own life as sacred and that of his neighbour too. He should strive to build a society that respects the sacredness of life: a society in which the ensemble of its laws, manners and customs direct its members to the end intended by their Creator, Redeemer and Sanctifier. He should strive for a society with a culture of life: natural life and supernatural life.
The only society with the plenitude of the culture of life is a truly Catholic society. In such a society, the Church and the state work in harmony to uphold the sacredness of life for the end intended by God. Conversely, a society that denies God or His ownership of life, is one that implicitly denies the true sanctity of life. Such a society, ignoring the first cause and last end of man, will inevitably slide into a culture of death.
Culture of death
A culture of death is a culture of radical selfishness in which man considers himself the supreme master of himself – his own god. It is a culture that leads to both supernatural and natural death. It is a culture of contraception, in-vitro fertilisation, embryo experimentation, eugenics, abortion, sexualisation of children, pornography, homosexuality, sexual abuse, drug abuse, self-mutilation, divorce, suicide and euthanasia. It is a culture of institutionalised evil: everything that tramples on life, everything that mitigates against the perfection of man. It has the prince of the world as its prime mover and the damnation of souls as its final intention.
In the culture of death, evil is either regarded as good (with names like “family planning”, “reproductive health”, “pro-choice”, “relationships education”, “self-discovery”, “self-expression”, “death with dignity”) or simply a private affair. Truth is measured by emotion and reason by is measured by convenience. “We must abort our children to save the planet for our children” is considered a sound argument, or “It is in the interest of the child, that we abort it” is considered a solid judgement.
Opposition to the culture of death is met with astonishment and accusations of hatred. The establishment: political institutions, the teaching, medical, legal and accounting professions, media and big business become its promoters and enforcers; assent to the culture of death becomes a condition of participation in society.
Alas, this is the society in which we find ourselves today. Faithful Catholics are being excluded from many walks of life and are being persecuted for living their faith.
But there is always hope, because a society that thirsts for death can never last. It can never renew itself and will inevitably end in self-destruction. Our Lord Jesus Christ remains owner and master of life. Born into the world two thousand years ago, He died so that the life that He created may be redeemed; and He now lives that it might be sanctified. His Church will last until the end of the world, the culture of life will always prevail.
We have prepared ourselves through the beautiful season of Advent and now rejoice in the birth of Emmanuel, “God with us”, in this season of Christmas. Let us therefore pray that we might so cherish the sanctity of body and soul that He, Who was born into a stable two thousand years ago for our sake, might take full possession of that which is truly His.
On behalf of the priests and brother of the Society in Great Britain & Ireland, please accept our best wishes for a happy and holy Christmas. Thank you for your prayers and assistance over the last year. Let us be consoled in these dark times by the fact that, as the crisis in the Church and the world deepens, we can more closely resemble Our Blessed Lord in his rejection by both the aberrant religious authorities and the state! Deo gratias.
In Jesu et Maria,
Rev. Robert Brucciani