The so-called “European Union” or EU is failing because it is not based on the one and only thing that could possibly hold it together — Catholicism. By ditching its Christian heritage, the EU was doomed to failure before it ever really began. A union based on Secularism is doomed to fail. Such will be the case with the United States (US) as well. The only thing that has held the US together this long was a wink and nod toward Christianity from the so-called “secular” establishment in Washington DC. That’s what allowed the US to recover after America’s Civil War (War of the Rebellion), and that is what allowed it to remain as long as the 21st century. But in the late 20th century, the American courts turned away from their wink and nod toward Christianity, and began enforcing a more secular state. Simultaneously with that decision, the United States began its long and protracted social death spiral, which will not end until either Americans turn back to Christianity en mass, or what’s left of the Union Lincoln re-established fractures into smaller nation-states.
Three things held the United States together for over 200 years. They were as follows…
- a common language (English),
- a common religion (Christianity of various sorts),
- a Constitution and government willing to let those two exist in peace.
Europe has no common language. Europe has also abandoned Christianity. The EU has no intention of creating a pan-European language or leaving Christianity in peace. So the EU project is doomed to failure.
I don’t know how many times I’ve said this, but I’ll say it again. Secularism is a vacuum. It is nothing. It is rather the lack of something. Secularism is the idea that a society can lack a dominant religion backed by law that governs social behaviour. It is, at its core, the lack of religion, or the absence of religion. You can’t build something on nothing! It doesn’t work. Just try building a house on air. See how that works for you. No lasting civilisation, in the history of the world, has ever been built on nothing. There has always been a religious underpinning. There has always be something. From the various different types of Paganism in ancient Egypt, Babylon, Greece and Rome, to the Christianity of medieval Europe, lasting civilisations have always been built on a religious foundation that was solid enough to support its weight. When people come together, in large numbers, as in cities and nations, there needs to be a common set of values that governs them. Enforcing those values with the iron rod of government is insufficient. It must be a value system that speaks to individuals from within their hearts. It must be something that is taught in their families. It must be something that permeates every quarter of society, from the temples, to the markets, to the military, to the entertainment. It must be all-encompassing.
The ancient Roman Empire was built on Paganism, just as the many empires before it. However, the Romans quickly discovered the same problem that faced the Egyptians and Babylonians. Paganism is not a monotheistic or universal religion. It is rather an ethnocentric cluster of tribal religions. Under Paganism, each town or city might have its own patron god/goddess, but people would be free to worship other gods as well. Upon building an empire, however, Rome discovered (like its imperial predecessors) that these smaller ethnocentric beliefs had to be united under a common universal belief. So the Pagan solution was to simply elevate Caesar to the level of a god. Citizens of Rome, and subjects of the empire, were free to worship whatever gods they wanted, provided they also worshipped Caesar as a god on earth. We saw shadows of the same thing with Babylon’s king and Egypt’s pharaoh.
Ancient Paganism collapsed along with the Roman Empire, and what gradually replaced it was Christianity. Under Christianity, Jesus of Nazareth (Yahweh incarnate) is worshipped as the one true God. Pagan gods were relegated to mythology. Christianity had more to offer to the people than Paganism, especially in the way of forgiveness of sins and escape from the fates. It is telling how easily Pagans converted to Christianity, even the hardened ones from the north, once Christianity gained a foothold in the region. Life improved under Christianity, for everyone involved, especially the poor. Christianity provided the framework to rebuild upon the ashes of the old Roman Empire, a united belief system which everyone could hold in common, and what was built is now called Europe.
However, Christianity was different from other universal religions in the sense that it employed a method of conversion called inculturation. I wrote about this more extensively in another essay. Under inculturation, an exchange occurs. It’s kind of like a transaction. Christianity says to the indigenous Pagan culture something like this: “Look, we have the full truth of the universal God, but we recognise that God has already spoken to your people in different ways, hidden in shadows. We recognise and respect anything that is true in your religions, and we value your culture as an important part of God’s kingdom. Therefore, if you will become Christian and accept our doctrines, we will adopt elements of your culture as our own, in a sort of marriage between us.” This was a rather revolutionary concept. Under Paganism, local cultures were either absorbed into a pantheon of many gods or obliterated into nonexistence. Christianity offered a kind of partnership, a marriage if you will, wherein cultures (and just about everything that comes with them) could be united with the Church, but not absorbed by her. This is why Christianity looks a little different wherever you go in Europe, and European cultures themselves retain very distinctive differences. The German Catholic is just as Christian as the French Catholic, who in turn is just as Christian as the Italian or Spanish Catholic. And yet, when you look at their cultures, they remain very different. Even the way Catholicism is practised in these countries is a little different, each influenced by different cultural norms, which in many cases come from their Pagan ancestral roots. I explained how Christianity can do this in my previous essay on inculturation. This is why I say Europe is Catholic. It was built on Catholicism, and only on Catholicism can it remain Europe. Any other religious underpinning, or lack thereof, causes Europe to unravel and slowly revert back to her ethnocentric pre-Christian (tribal) era.
Now let’s have a look at what happened over the course of history. Catholic Europe was fractured and weakened by the Protestant Revolution in the 16th century, followed by the so-called “Enlightenment” of the 18th century. Still it was able to cling to a shell of what it once was throughout the 19th century, that is until the First World War (1913-1918). That’s when things really began to unravel. The Communist Revolution in Russia, as horrible as that was, was just the beginning of sorrows. The Second World War (1939-1945) finished off what vestiges of Christian faith and morals were left in Europe. Then the Soviet Union, spearheaded by Communist Russia, began a systematic campaign to wipe our what little remained of Christianity by attacking the Catholic Church directly with propaganda and internally by having communist agents ordained as Catholic priests. Make no mistake about it, from a Christian perspective, the whole 20th-century was a century of destruction; physically, socially, culturally and spiritually. Catholic Europe had already been fractured and weakened by the events of the 16th through 18th centuries. The 20th century finished it off.
So with the Catholic faith of Europe utterly destroyed by a century of open war and covert subversion, Europe was left in a Secular malaise by the end of the 20th century, exactly when the EU was being planned. What resulted was a Secular Europe codified by a Secular government that has no room (or tolerance) for Catholic teaching or inculturation. What Secular Europe seeks to create is a sterile social environment, where no religion is better than another, and all are subject to the sterile, Secular State.
Guess what? It doesn’t work. The first problem we have encountered is the fertility bubble. Without Catholic Christianity to teach the spiritual and moral value of starting a family and raising children, Europe’s indigenous population has failed to reproduce. The fertility rate in all European countries is well below the 2.2 children per household needed to maintain a stable population provided there are no wars or natural disasters. As a result, the population of indigenous Europeans is decreasing, which threatens collapse of the European economy and welfare state. This has caused the EU to accept immigrants and migrants from the Middle East and Northern Africa in the vain hope that they will somehow be “Europeanised” as if Secularism could ever accomplish such a thing.
What Secularists don’t realise is that Islam is stronger than Secularism. Nearly all of the migrants moving into Europe are Muslims. They will not be “Europeanised” so long as doing so means they have to “convert” to a sterile non-religion, that their own religion and culture must take a backseat too. It’s not going to happen. So guess what? Secularism will gradually collapse and bow down to Islam. The religion of Mohammed will become the de facto religion of Europe in about one to two generations from now. Yes, if the current trends hold, the children of today will be living in a totally Islamic Europe (Europastan) by the time they are old enough to draw pension checks.
Islam offers a very different deal than Catholic Christianity did. There is no inculturation in Islam. That’s because Islamic culture is Arab, and Arab culture is Islamic. Indigenous cultures must submit, and be eradicated if necessary, to make way for Islamic Arab culture. Subtle variations are permitted, of course, but for the most part, Islamic culture is monolithic. An Islamic Europe will not look like the Europe of today. Some of the old buildings will remain, of course, but the cultures that make up Europe today will be gone. There will be no room for Christmas, Easter, Oktoberfest, Midsummerfest, etc. All public statues will be gone. The only place you’ll find statues will be in churches, and there won’t be many of those left. Women will be forced to cover their hair in public, and men will be strongly encouraged to wear modesty tunics. One only need do a case study in Asian and African countries already taken over by Islam to see Europe’s future.
The indigenous backlash to this Islamic invasion is predictable. As Christianity remains weak and gutted, and as the Catholic Church suffers from corrupt and emasculated leadership, many Europeans have awakened to their loss of culture, and the real prospect of complete cultural suicide within a century. Recognising the impotence of Secularism, they are turning back to their ethnocentric roots. Thus, we are now witnessing the emergence of neo-paganism and ethnic nationalism. Hitler would have been proud, because that is exactly what he was trying to accomplish with the Third Reich. It won’t be long before ethno-nationalists and Islamic jihadists begin violent clashes in the streets, coupled with acts of terrorism on each other’s communities. The end will be total civil war on the European continent — Islamic jihadists v ethnic nationalists — and Christians (few as remain) will be caught in the middle.
There is only one solution to Europe’s crisis, and that is a healthy and robust Catholic Christianity, recognised and encouraged by the state. European nations must go back to confessional states, and that confession must be Catholicism. Furthermore, the Catholic hierarchy must be cleansed of criminals and perverts. If the hierarchy of the Church will not do it themselves, then the state must “help” them by prosecuting the criminally guilty. The practice of Catholicism should be encouraged by the state — not mandated but encouraged — and the state should look upon the fertility of Catholic families as a positive thing that will eventually save Europe. As for the EU, it must be conformed to recognise the contribution of Catholic Christianity to Europe, and support national sovereignty, or else the entire project should be abandoned. (I suspect it will be.)
Outside of this template, Europe cannot be saved, and any attempt to do so will end in massive violence unparalleled since the two world wars of the last century. It will become a humanitarian disaster.
Shane Schaetzel is an Evangelical convert to the Catholic Church through Anglicanism and was trained as a catechist through the University of Dayton – a Catholic Marianist Institution. Shane’s articles have been featured on LifeSiteNews, ChurchMilitant, The Remnant Newspaper, Forward in Christ, and Catholic Online. Shane is an author of Catholic books, which can be read here.