Established by Christ in year 0000 and thereafter slowly but surely growing in reach and embrace, even actually becoming a universal institution spread in the four corners of the globe – this is the Holy Mother Catholic Church that is now some 2012 years old. A good number of people – from atheists to some churchmen themselves – exerted all efforts and adopted all means to do away with her. In fact, there are still powerful groups, wealthy individuals plus influential personalities who want to make her disappear from the face of the earth. But the Church is still around – 2012 years after its launching and still counting.
There were and there still are even so called “Catholics” who in truth hate her reality and in fact detest her existence. This is not to mention people who vehemently oppose Christianity and who want this done away with – the sooner the better. This is not to mention the painful but verified phenomenon about certain members of the Catholic clergy who act and behave to the disgrace and shame of the Catholic Church as a whole. And in previously known Catholic countries, there are also individuals, families, and communities that either live as non-Catholics or have completely secularism or practical atheism.
So it is that even the Church in the Philippines considered as the only Christian country in Asia, is not taken seriously by many Filipinos – be these counted among the common tao or those in tenure of power and might. So it is that practically any time of the year, there are these and those “Christian” sects that sprout here and there. And this is saying nothing about those already well established churches and religions that continue to propagate themselves. And so it is that the Church in this country may be still a majority in number – but a minority in faith, spirit, and practices.
And so it is that for the Church in the world, Pope Benedict XVI himself wrote an Apostolic Letter dated 11 October 2011 launching the “Year of Faith” that expressly noted the “profound crisis of faith that has affected many people” – in world over. And for the Church in the Philippines, the CBCP in response thereto made a Pastoral Exhortation on 23 July 2012 entitled “Live Christ, Share Christ” quoting the Holy Father calling attention to the pressing need of “overcoming the separation of the Gospel from life.”
Now, what? This: the Catholic Church may be vibrant or dull in this or that time, may be triumphant or humbled in this and that place. But one truth remains beyond doubt or debate, viz., she is still around. Anti-Catholics then are all gone – but the Catholic Church is still here. Anti-Catholics now will also be gone in due time – but the Catholic Church will sill be around for sure. This is the sterling truth. This is the signal lesson of human history. It will take more than mere mortals to do away with the Catholic Church.