I remember growing up that many, if not most, stores and businesses were closed on Sunday. I remember that the question was never whether a person you knew went to church or not, the question was, which church did he or she go to? When I was young, Bishop Fulton J Sheen had the number one rated television show in the land – Protestants and Catholics alike tuned in to watch him, my parents included. In other words, faith, Christian faith, was an integral part of society and, yes, even culture. What we have today is a disaster that seems only to get worse with each passing day. Bishop Chaput asks a very good question when he writes,
The question is: How did we get from the America of Tocqueville, where on Sundays “the commercial and industrial life of the nation seems suspended [in piety, and] all noise ceases,” to the America where—borrowing from the words of Pascal Bruckner— we’re the “galley slaves of pleasure,” an America of obsessive consumption and confused sexuality where “the intention was to produce freedom, but the result was advertising; [where] what was liberated was less our libido than our appetite for unlimited shopping”? Archbishop Charles Chaput, A Heart on Fire: Catholic Withness and the Next America, Kindle edition, Location 232
“The galley slaves of pleasure. . .” is an apt description of what is going on today, and a very sad one. To make matters worse, we have an administration bent on making in impossible legally to return our society to some sort of freedom and sanity; they consider what was once good and normal in this country to be evil and repressive. One can only see the work of dark forces in their motives, and one can spend a lot of time in prayer and remembrance that these forces must lose, have already truly lost.