Coronavirus and the Real Invisible Danger
Stephen Clark, Manila, Philippines – The local and global responses to the coronavirus are interesting; here we have an invisible but real threat seen by its effects. Large efforts and vast resources are now deployed to counter this.
I believe Christians and the Church particularly can learn a great deal from this fervour and realisation of danger in our midst. For, we too, face an invisible enemy whose effects are more far-reaching than a flu virus. Can anything other than the full message and application of the authority Jesus extended to it, counter and protect humanity from such an enemy?
At a time in history when humanity is being assaulted simultaneously on multiple frontlines, there seems to be a muted or bewildered response. Clauswitzian fog before the eyes of many leads to rationalising instead of bold action taken in faith.
Whereas every diocese is required to have its own exorcist, for example, those in need of one might have to travel halfway around Europe to find one nowadays; we are no longer equipped for the times.
Fr Gabriele Amorth in his book An Exorcist Tells his Story mentions what a bishop (who had not appointed an exorcist in his diocese) said that he “did not want to make an enemy of the devil”, perhaps forgetting his predecessors when they said: “Lord, even the demons submit to us in your name” (Luke 10: 17). He (Jesus) replied: “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven” (Luke 10: 18).
But it goes beyond this. Wishy-washy preaching turns the good news into the good advice, the demands of holiness and a fierce devotion to a baseline of mediocrity and complacency.
There is a need to look back and see that what worked for the saints in the centuries gone by, was not sophisticated reasoning but simply telling the truth about God, about our need for him and the salvation he offers, how desperately he is reaching out to us in love to ransom us and shield us from the clutches of the evil that surrounds us. We must take it seriously.
The legions of the enemy camp take their work very seriously, have undivided hearts as they assault the world with their deceptions of abortion, gender ideology, atheism and a host of other ways to destroy souls; our response cannot be to offer a peace treaty of tolerance and fear but, on the contrary, to see it for what it is and push back with the full force of the truths of the Gospel.
What will it take for people to even believe anymore? Does Satan have to have his own TV show before we become alert and aware?