Fr. Dwight Longenekker has a way of identifying the kernel of certain issues that makes me sometimes suspect he has x-ray vision. For example, let’s ask a question that may rile some people because it pre-supposes failure of an endeavor dear to many hearts: Why will the “new evangelization” fail? Right. It makes one angry because it seems to pre-suppose failure. But read on:
Anyone who’s ever got their pick-up stuck on muddy Georgia roads knows full well that back is very often the best forward. In fact, pursued as a default setting, forward is not only no improvement of the situation, but it could get you so stuck you have to go get somebody with a tow chain to pull you out.
If the new evangelization accelerates a forward push in the now-orthodox de facto demythologization movement (the muddy road in which we’ve become mired), it will fail. And just who will be willing to loan us a tow-chain? That media-hyped world we think we can save if we just get media-hyped enough? That laid-back world we plan to save by our seeming acceptance of whatever-floats-your-boat?
What (Who) are we about? Is it not worth backing up and remembering? When you’re stuck in the mud, it’s best not to attempt forward until you go back….