Idolatry of Self Threatens All We Once Held Dear

CommunityEvery abortion in Canada is paid for with our tax dollars (without our consent or any public consensus). It is a moral outrage!

Then in late July 2015, the abortion pill RU-486 was quietly approved by Health Canada. Although women will need a prescription to obtain it, a whole new phase of early abortion is about to begin in 2016. It will be secret killing, under the radar, so to speak. Canadians will not have the slightest clue how many little lives will be deliberately snuffed out in utero. The intentional taking of human life won’t end there.

Earlier this year Canada’s Supreme Court unanimously struck down the law prohibiting assisted suicide.  The suicidal sick, disabled or depressed are likely to be helped to kill themselves beginning in 2016. Canada truly has become a culture of death. O Canada! Where did we go wrong?

I think I have a vague idea of our societal error. Throughout the twentieth century, Canada experienced a gradual cultural drift from its Christian foundations.  Others have chronicled the drift more adeptly and thoroughly than I could possibly do, but let me tell you generally where I think we went off course from truth.

Much of society ceased to believe or care that the real presence of Christ was possible in their lives ? or the Blessed Sacrament for that matter. With it came a loss of holiness and a sense of wonder for the sacred. C.S Lewis wrote: “Next to the Blessed Sacrament itself, your neighbor is the holiest object presented to your senses.”

That is a simple, profound truth yet vast portions of our culture became blind to the concept of holiness and the transforming sense of wonder that it brings to life. Just as the real presence of Christ is what makes the Sacrament blessed, it is the image of God that gives sanctity to all humanity.

Hearts that are indifferent to the things of God can make any atrocity possible ? like digging out a developing unborn child from its womb or helping a suicidal disabled or sick person kill himself. As Christians we must never become indifferent to abortion or the euthanizing of people.

Pope Benedict XVI said:

Not all moral issues have the same moral weight as abortion and euthanasia. There may be legitimate diversity of opinion even among Catholics about waging war and applying the death penalty, but not… with regard to abortion and euthanasia.

Personal autonomy elevated to the highest ideal at the expense of
community concern and the common good is treacherous indeed. It does not enhance our humanity; it takes away from our humanity and leaves society poorer, much poorer. It is the tyranny of self that excludes consideration for the good of others. Unaccountable personal autonomy inevitably hurts the most vulnerable and those with the least power.

Again, Pope Benedict said elsewhere: “We are moving toward a dictatorship of relativism which does not recognize as for certain and which has as its highest goal one’s own ego and one’s own desires.”

Our culture is infected with the deadly combination of the eyeless ‘I’ of narcissism, and the moral corruption of nihilism which rejects long-held beliefs and morals of a previous Judeo-Christian culture.

Have we come to a point of nihilism where each person is his own judge and jury and his personal convictions of self-interest are infallible? Is every person is his own god? Have we come to a point where Frederic Neitzsche’s terrible predictions have come true? He said: “Nihilism is standing at the door. A triumph of nihilism is evitable.”

Has nihilism crossed the threshold and overcome our previous tried and true Christian culture? Will those faithful to the gospel and commandments of Jesus Christ and his Church acquiesce to such a perilous the unproven future?  We must not.

Everything Christians should hold dear – like the sanctity of human life – is at stake. I do not want you to take this lightly. The lives of the powerless as well as the hearts and souls of the powerful hang in the sway!

Jesus Christ commanded us to take the Good News to the world which includes our neighborhoods. The Gospel message has changed and transformed individuals and entire societies before in history. I pray it can happen again. Countless lives depend on the transforming grace of Jesus Christ. If you and I do not take news of the internal transformation that a personal encounter with Christ can bring, who will?

Wear your Christianity for all to see and always be prepared to give an account for the hope that is within you.

Mark Davis Pickup is chronically ill and disabled with degenerative multiple sclerosis. He is an advocate for life issues and disability inclusion across North America. He and his wife, LaRee, have been married for 38 years. They live in Alberta Canada with their two adult children and five grandchildren. Mark is available to address issues of euthanasia, assisted suicide, and issues revolving around suffering that often fuel calls for euthanasia. He writes regularly at http://markpickup.org and http://humanlifematters.org. For bookings, contact him by e-mail at [email protected] or telephone (780) 929-9230. Mark Pickup's bi-weekly column can be read in the Western Catholic Reporter (Canada) at http://www.wcr.ab.ca/.