What on Earth Do Catholics Want?

The incomparable Patrick J. Buchanan authored a column on the racial and religious remapping of Europe and America: “Will the West Survive the Century?” The twin engines propelling these demographic shifts are the birth dearth of Europeans (in both continents), and the careless immigration policies of Europe and its North-American outposts.

Inasmuch as these phenomena are both practical expressions of liberalism, and inasmuch they are both suicidal for the nations that have adopted them, their coalescence is a perfect if tragic illustration of the words penned by James Burnham in 1964: “Liberalism is the ideology of Western suicide” (Suicide of the West, recently cited by Robert Hickson).

Here are a few paragraphs from Buchanan’s piece:

With Mexico and Central America adding 56 million people in 35 years, either the U.S. secures its southern border or the 11-12 million immigrants here illegally will have millions of new compatriots.

America is already evolving into another country.

Though the U.S. is projected to grow by 67 million people in 35 years, this growth will be wholly among Hispanics, Asians and African-Americans. In each of the past four years, non-Hispanic white Americans have registered more deaths than births.

Between July 2014 and July 2015, the Asian-American population grew by 3.4 percent, and the Hispanic population grew 2.2 percent. The black population was up 1.3 percent. But the white population grew by only 0.1 percent.

White America has begun to die.

It has been projected that, within thirty years, non-Hispanic white people will be a minority in the United States. Now, one might choose to lament that. But what would be the point of such lamentation? To blame people? The blame quite obviously falls on the suicidal liberalism that the victims themselves have adopted. While I would not say that we should rejoice at the prospects of Europeans, on both sides of the Atlantic, being reduced to minority status, I do think we should look at the situation with a certain detached trust in divine providence. Moreover, American Catholics who care about the salvation of souls — and who therefore want people to convert to the Catholic faith — we should think less in terms of America’s future pigmentation, and more in terms of its evangelization.

As much as it is the natural right of every nation to guard its borders and consequently to restrict immigration in accord with its people’s common good (read Saint Thomas on this), simply throwing up a wall is not going to fix the real problems. Japan does that (figuratively), and, as a result, they are dying faster than other nations because Japanese national suicide is not artificially masked by immigration. (Over a decade ago, “healing partner” dolls to replace non-existent grandchildren began to be widely marketed to elderly Japanese people.) The problems run much deeper. As Roberto de Mattei has written, “Those who renounce defending the moral boundaries of a nation, lose the right to defend its borders… .” Those moral boundaries include defending marriage and unborn human life, what we inaptly refer to as “social issues,” but which are more truly — to use a fashionable word — “existential issues.”

We Americans pride ourselves on doing things to fix problems. We are a can-do people. So what do we do?

Conversion is the only answer. Conversion to Catholicism, beginning with a daily conversion of life among those of us already professing to be Catholic. Ours is now the one religion that still maintains that contraception is a sin. If Europeans and white Americans actually lived the natural law on this point, then we would not be dwindling away to minority status. But given the universal corruption around us, to obey this law practically requires living the life of grace. So, even materially speaking, conversion has become another existential issue.

But even if European-Americans were to achieve a replacement birth rate, what if Mr. Trump’s wall doesn’t go up? What if the political class continues its current improvident immigration policy?

Strategic thinking must be put into assimilating our newly arrived Hispanic brethren into a new American Christendom. For instance, any counter-revolutionary, Catholic missionary thinking must include establishing apostolates to form and educate Spanish speakers in authentic Catholicism and the culture that goes with it. These Spanish speakers would include immigrants and those already in the U.S. Young Hispanic men, especially, should be formed as the clerical, religious, and lay leadership of a future Hispano-American Christendom. What if serious energy were put into forming those who would go forth to challenge young Hispanic men to live a life of virtuous high adventure? Maybe the discipline, comradeship, identity, and excitement they seek in groups like the MS-13, the Latin Kings, Nuestra Familia, and the rest, could be found in a radically new way in groups dedicated to Christian masculinity, Catholic chivalry, the family, and a zeal for the Reign of Christ and Our Lady of Guadalupe.

Similar strategies could be employed for the various Asian immigrations here.

And where are the apostles to Black America? Where are the Father Toltons, the Peter Clavers, the Mother Drexels and Mother Delilles who will do for American Blacks what Al Sharpton, Jesse Jackson, et. alia, cannot?

Considering again the Latinos, it is a fact that the Evangelicals, Pentecostals, Mormons, and other sects focus on them. Many of these groups evidently have long-term strategic plans. They are organized. They pour resources into their efforts to win over Spanish speakers to their sects.

What are we doing?

One sometimes wonders what the masses of Catholics in this continent really want. The same goes for our clerical leadership. Most American Catholics, clerical and lay, seem to want to be like everyone else: to enjoy American freedoms, and to have some modicum of success defined according to material standards of the socialists or capitalists. Beyond that are very vague notions of altruism and liberal, bourgeois concepts of virtue — all eventually rewarded by a Heaven that everyone goes to anyway as the proverbial cherry on top.

This is a wonderful recipe for failure, that is, for the abysmal status quo.

If this sad state of affairs were not the case, our institutions (high schools, universities, hospitals, etc.) would be notably different from their secular and non-Catholic sectarian counterparts.

When the Roman empire in the West breathed forth its last, saints rose up to assimilate the invaders into a new Christian people. The nations and peoples of Catholic Europe slowly and laboriously came into existence. America (like Europe) now bears some curious and disturbing resemblances to Rome on the eve of its fall. The work of forging a new Christendom here must begin now.

At the very least, we must begin to want it.