” … such loss of faith is ever one of the saddest results of sin.”

Nathaniel Hawthorne, in The Scarlett Letter

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Often we think of the loss of faith as an individual thing – that it is the consequence of our individual actions or inactions – ah, but we forget that we live in culture and swim in it; that it, too, can be inclined to sin and structures and dispositions of sin and the explicit and inferred rejection of God that exacts a serious cost as to our attachment to culture and to its sin, its many sins.

Folks: cultures take a tariff.  We often pay unwittingly and without any clue that we are being robbed, reduced, converted to a faithless fate.

I share an example of this.

I recently attended a wedding of a young man who had been in Catholic schools all his life, a man who attended a prominent Catholic university and is through and through attached to the school, if not its rich and deep religious ethos.

Well his wedding was without any reference whatsoever to faith.

The fellow who presided over the ceremony was a lawyer and himself a graduate of a prestigious Catholic university.  His governance over the ceremony evidenced his skill in creative and witty writing and humor, but nary so much as a remote reference to God, or to faith.

As to a sacred ceremony, it resembled more so a bowling banquet, nothing more.

Well, for some reason (perhaps, appearance) I was tapped to give the prayer before the wedding meal and so I did – preparing four short paragraphs and, imagine this: mentioning God, the wedding at Cana and Christ our Lord.

Strangely, at the prayer’s conclusion the attendees clapped, applauded.  I was surprised to say the least.  Then, I realized I was the only one to mention God the entire day.

Friends, what I witnessed was a culture losing contact with faith at an ever-increasing speed.

If anyone had told me ten years ago that I would experience this at a wedding of those previously immersed in faith, I would have flat-out not imagined that could happen.

Dear Friends, we are losing faith faster than can be imagined.

What are YOU going to do about it?  The crisis is at hand.  Consider yourself forewarned.

Shalom.

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