Many are those who look askance at mentions of anything dramatic or "apocalyptic," and who disdain discussion of spiritual warfare. Focus on the positive, they say -- and we should: though not to the neglect, as is now the case, especially among those who feature themselves as cerebral, of the spiritual dynamic.
As Father Christopher Ngozi Onuoha points out in a brand new book on spiritual warfare (Healing You and Your Family Tree), it was Pope John Paul II -- Saint John Paul II -- who in November of 1976 told U.S. bishops during a visit to America (as Cardinal Karol Wojtyla): "We are now standing in the face of the greatest historical confrontation humanity has ever experienced. I do not think the wide circle of the American society, or the wide circle of the Christian community, realizes this fully. We are now facing the final confrontation between the Church and the anti-church, between the Gospel and the anti-Gospel, between Christ and the anti-christ. This confrontation lies within the plans of Divine Providence. It is, therefore, in God's Plan, and it must be a trial which the Church must take up and face courageously..."
Yet, how many do nothing? How many "mainstream" Catholic groups ignore this dimension of our faith, focusing instead and solely on the worldly "intellectual" aspect of the institution?
What it comes down to is knowing where the devil operates in our lives, workplaces, and families and also fighting back when society tells us we must accept evils such as genetic manipulation, abortion, pollution, transgenderism, homosexuality -- when it tries to tell us that we must conform to the "post-Christian" era and accept the elimination of the Christian meaning of Christmas.
To complain is not enough; we must let our legislators know we are out here. And more than this, we must cast the devil -- yes, the devil -- out. He is a real shadow. He is not a cartoon with a pitchfork, as too many intellectuals think. Said Saint Maximilian Kolbe, "In the face of such attacks of the enemies of the Church of God, are we to remain inactive? Is that all we can do -- complain and cry out? Everyone of us has a holy obligation to personally hurl back the assault of the foe."
It was Cardinal Francis George of Chicago who once surprised everyone by saying he expected that if America continued at the current rate to head down a secular path, "my successor will die in prison and his successor will die a martyr in the public square."
The comment hearkens back to something else Saint John Paul II said in 1976. To wit:
"We must prepare ourselves to suffer great trials before long, such as will demand of us a disposition to give up even life, and a total dedication to Christ and for Christ... With your and my prayer it is possible to mitigate this tribulation, but it is no longer possible to avert it, because only thus can the Church be effectively renewed. How many times has the renewal of the Church sprung from blood! This time, too, it will not be otherwise. We must be strong and prepared, and trust in Christ and His mother, and be very, very assiduous in praying the Rosary."
Here is also a useful prayer: "That the Precious Blood may protect me; that the Precious Blood may heal me; that the Precious Blood mold me; that the Precious Blood renew me."
We risk defeat only when we are plagued by inertia and sloth, when we ignore the supernatural undercurrent, which make us a sitting target.