With the coming of Christian Pascha (Easter) we should consider the state of Christianity in America today. So look at this from Fox News:
A religious studies major was barred from Christianity class at Indiana University of Pennsylvania for saying during class that there are only two genders.
Lake Ingle, a senior at the university, said he was silenced and punished by IUP Professor Alison Downie for questioning her during a Feb. 28 “Christianity 481: Self, Sin, and Salvation” lecture.
After showing a 15-minute (talk) by transgender ex-pastor Paula Stone Williams discussing the “reality” of “mansplaining,” “sexism from men,” and “male privilege,” the professor asked the women in the class to share their thoughts. When no women in the class said anything, Ingle spoke up, challenging the professor on biology and the gender wage gap.
He told the class that the official view of biologists is that there are only two genders.
The feminist professor booted him from class and asked him not to come back. She referred him to the public university’s Academic Integrity Board (AIB). Ingle needs to complete the class to graduate at the end of the semester.
“You are barred from attending this class in accordance with the Classroom Disruption policy,” IUP Provost Timothy Moerland told Ingle in a March 2 letter.
This is the abysmal level to which our universities have sunk. More than anywhere else a college class should welcome a variety of opinions, particularly concerning a long-held belief versus a new idea which is a perfect subject for debate.
The idea that there are more than two genders not only has never been accepted historically by Christians but it has never been accepted by society at large, or any significant part of society, until just the last few years.
Yet now anyone who fails to accept this view is immediately singled out for criticism, ostracism and expulsion in certain quarters.
Then the idea that this happened in a Christian studies university class is all the more shocking. This is a prime example of an assault on Christian beliefs from within, i.e., from within college studies that are supposed to be considering the question of what it means to be a Christian. At the same time the far-left ideas being promoted by Pope Francis are another example of how Christianity is being weakened from within at the highest level.
Then there was the recent incident on the national TV show The View in which host Joy Behar said that vice president Mike Pence is suffering from “mental illness” for being a faithful Christian.
Behar apologized to Pence over the phone and then apologized – seemingly under duress and without any passion – publicly for a comment which showed the brazen hatred for Christians among the leftist intelligentsia and the entertainment industry, among others.
This goes on and on all around the world. Yet still Christianity has up to 2.3 billion followers, or 30% of the world’s population, including strongholds in all of the world’s most prosperous and advanced nations (the US, Europe, Canada, Australia, etc.) Even South Korea is reported to be 28% Christian.
In less-developed nations Christianity is booming. The Institute on Religion and Public Life reports:
The most extraordinary Christian growth over the past century has come in Africa: home to 8.7 million Christians in 1900, 542 million today, and perhaps 1.2 billion by 2050, when there will be as many African Christians as Latin American and European Christians combined.
That is almost half of all Africans today. Most are Catholic but Orthodox Christianity is strong in Ethiopia (38 million, or one-third the country); Coptic Christianity in Egypt (8 million); and Protestant Fundamentalism all over the continent.
Still the war on Christians is as old as the faith itself. Yet we know that Christianity formed the basis for the most forward-looking, advanced and free societies in the world, i.e., Europe and then the United States.
In point of fact Christianity is the only reason that we are all here today. Over the last 2,000 years it is Christianity that has given Western society meaning and order. It has celebrated morality, honesty, help for the poor, life, marriage, birth, family and even death in a dignified and orderly manner. No other institution has done this. This is why even many non-believers go to churches to marry, baptize their children and to finally celebrate a life in death, with a Christian preacher, pastor or priest presiding.
Christianity has been the binding agent of Western civilization since the beginning of the Middle Ages when Roman emperor Constantine legitimized the faith in 313 AD. Gerald Simons wrote in 1968 in a book called Barbarian Europe:
“The foundations of medieval civilization were laid by a unique political revolution… The new (formative) entity was Christendom, a mystical commonwealth that united all believers across the shifting boundaries of barbarian kingdoms. …No other agency in the West, during or long after the (Roman) empire’s collapse, could have filled the political vacuum left by weak Roman emperors and unequipped Germanic kings. Moved to serve the general welfare by an unshakeable conviction of its own mission to all mankind, the Church took the lead in the West… The Church provided and worked to instill social ideals and moral values… These and other achievements proved so decisive that it is almost impossible to imagine what course Western history might have taken if the Church had fallen along with the Roman empire.”
Indeed Christianity was the single moral, political and social force that organized and unified Europe in the Middle Ages. This became the basis for our Western civilization.
The Middle Ages, from roughly 300 AD to 1300 AD, was the period that laid the foundation for modern Europe. It started after the fall of Rome in social disorganization, a scattered rural peasantry, widespread poverty, subsistence living, ignorance, lawlessness, short lifespans, paganism, mysticism, and repeated outsider attacks by God-less barbarians like Huns, Goths, Norse and other evil invaders.
Christianity rescued Europe from this darkness. Christianity not only assimilated and organized the European people in the Middle Ages and united a continent but it converted the barbarians and made them good in some very dark centuries.
Then again Christianity brought its own light. Because Christianity is about the individual human spirit which needs to be uplifted over time, person by person, thought by thought. Eternal salvation in the kingdom of God is just the end point of an incomparable journey that starts with a walk through church doors.
Christian monasteries not only were centers for copying and illustrating historical manuscripts, and religious manuscripts too, but they also were places where Christian art and music were refined over many centuries.
Later on America was founded by pious Christian refugees on Christian principles. In short none of us would be here today without Christianity and thus if you wonder “Why should I go to church?” you have the answer: It is not about us today. It is about the future.
Consider the role that thousands of Christian monasteries large and small played in rural, unincorporated Europe throughout the Middle Ages. We typically think of monasteries as isolated and prayerful places full of monks making wine and bread and seeking an exalted state for themselves. But they also were garrisons of worldly activity that were absolutely essential to Western social and economic progress.
Monasteries served not only as Christian bastions but as centers of education and de facto government. Monasteries of the Middle Ages sometimes had libraries of rare books and were the basis for modern universities like Oxford and Cambridge. More than 125 Jesuit colleges alone were established across Europe. Thousands of monks and other Christian figures became scholars, some widely known and historic like The Venerable Bede (8th century) and Thomas Acquinas (13th century). This debunks the myth that Christianity is “anti-intellectual”.
Monasteries also acted as financial centers and banks, and as manufacturing and trading centers; as courts, hospitals, orphanages and shelters for the poor; and as inns and conference centers. Fees were rarely if ever charged for their services and hospitality.
Christian monasteries were laboratories for innovative technologies in agriculture, nutrition, medicine, mechanics, water systems, animal husbandry and even metallurgy that all served the common good. Monks, bishops and abbots acted as local political administrators, as police forces and judges, and also as road and bridge builders.
It was those devout monastic souls, separated from the temptations of the world and devoted to the perfection of God, who had the discipline, patience and faith to lay the foundation for a better life on a world of violence, subsistence and poverty.
In its short history Christian America has led the world, acting as a beacon of hope for billions of people all around the globe both as a moral guide, an economic inspiration and haven, and as a military liberator. Our Constitutional freedom itself emerged from our Christian founding. George Washington famously said, “Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, religion and morality are indispensable.”
So which other religion produced Europe and America, and liberty and art and philosophy and the technologies that have freed man from the bondage of hard labor?
Then along came the Christian-hating 1950s and the 1960s with the beatniks and the ‘hippies’. One of the leftist tricks of the 1960s was to try to make us think that we could be “spiritual” in any way. And so if a ‘hippie’ took LSD or played a flute or sat in the forest and marveled at the trees it was called “spiritual”. This was another of the major communist frauds, to confuse the people about the very definitions of their lives.
The ‘hippie’ culture of the 1960s then offered myriad alternatives to our historic Christian faith like transcendental meditation (a rote process based on Indian mysticism); Buddhism (promoted by the Beatles and by various Hollywood stars); New Age shams like crystals, fortune telling and numerology; psychology, psychiatry and “therapy”; and the most fanatical and false religion of all which is environmentalism or the worship of nature under which animals, trees, rocks, etc. are elevated to human status.
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