Here is a mere sample:
It is rare that a respected segment of American life would become vilified and hated overnight. The usual transformation from respect to vilification goes in stages which grow in intensity. And hereby the Church, once a respected aspect of American life, along with the Protestant denominations has become increasingly marginalized and hated by many. It may help us to review these stages of persecution since it would seem that things are going to get more difficult for the Church in the years ahead. Generally there are distinguished five basic stages of persecution.
You can find the full explanation at his place, but a summary…
The five stages, as he lists them, are: (1) Stereotyping the targeted group; (2) Vilifying the targeted group for alleged crimes or misconduct; (3) Marginalizing the targeted group’s role in society; (4) Criminalizing the targeted group or its works; (5) Persecuting the targeted group outright.
According to Msgr. Pope, the stereotyping stage began in the 1960s and 70s when Christians were “caricatured in the media as Bible thumpers, simpletons, as backwards, mentally simple, haters of science, hypocrites, self-righteous, old-fashioned and so forth.”
But, in his view, the culture has now reached stage 4 with the state beginning to “criminalize” Christian beliefs. “Stages one through four are pretty well in place. One may wish to whistle past the graveyard but it looks like we’re pretty well set for Stage V,” he writes.
I will add that, when analyzing some issue faced by the Church, we should look at it ad intra and ad extra. It is obvious that we have may agents within the Church who are either the witting agents or unwitting agent dupes of those who would bring about the eradication of the Church’s positive influence. Some of them wear Roman collars.
Meanwhile, everybody, let’s talk about the New Evangelization!
I refer the readership back to my constant points about sacred worship and Catholic identity and being prepared, mentally, spiritual and materially, for what is coming.