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Cardinal Sarah Warns The West

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28 Comments To "Cardinal Sarah Warns The West"

#1 Comment By Wes On September 21, 2017 @ 9:29 am

Sarah is the man.

#2 Comment By Kitchen timer On September 21, 2017 @ 10:16 am

I don’t read Breitbart, but checked its London site after one of your commenters recommended it the other day. I don’t know how reliable it is, but it was sobering to see the report that Muhammed was most popular boy’s name given in England and Wales in 2016, when spelling variations are taken into account.

#3 Comment By Siarlys Jenkins On September 21, 2017 @ 11:05 am

This is more a construct of words, exploring one plausible implication, than a firm characterization…

The cardinal implicitly suggests that his faith is a European import, that has no real roots or substantial place in his own land. In this sense, he denies the universality of the Gospel, that it is for all peoples, and takes it as a benevolent gift of Europe to sub-Saharan Africa.

If Christianity has really taken root in Africa, and in some areas it has, then Europe per se is irrelevant. If it has lost its faith, let it go. The Gospel is safe in those parts of the world where people still believe. Perhaps missionaries will someday bring it back to Europe when they are ready to hear it.

Then we can have debates about whether Christ was really black, like all the icons show, or whether he was blonde, pale, and blue-eyed, or whether he should be painted that way to make Him culturally relevant to the new converts.

#4 Comment By Steve S On September 21, 2017 @ 12:01 pm

A man who cares about Europe’s Christian heritage? Must be an alt-right nutjob white-supremacist!

#5 Comment By Raskolnik On September 21, 2017 @ 12:28 pm

A wise man. Perhaps Africa will prove the bulwark of Christianity.

#6 Comment By Alex On September 21, 2017 @ 2:04 pm

With all due respect, Cdl Sarah, why would I have children when I can devote my life to a corporation and buy a new iPhone every year?

#7 Comment By Olivier On September 21, 2017 @ 3:26 pm

Is there a transcript?

#8 Comment By caleb bernacchio On September 21, 2017 @ 4:23 pm

And so does Chaput.


#9 Comment By TG On September 21, 2017 @ 4:56 pm

You are watching a saint exercise the gift of prophecy.

#10 Comment By Joan Swan On September 21, 2017 @ 5:02 pm

Rod,do you ever ask yourself: where are our Bishops, of the stature of Cdl.Sarah or our Patriarchs, of the likes of Benedict XVI? I too am a RC convert. Have I missed something?

#11 Comment By BadReligion On September 21, 2017 @ 5:46 pm

“Eurabia” will never happen. Do the math.

#12 Comment By Greg in PDX On September 21, 2017 @ 6:23 pm

How can he “warn the West” when most of the West has never heard of him and of those who have most don’t care what he thinks?

#13 Comment By Bob Taylor On September 21, 2017 @ 8:06 pm

Siarlys Jenkins said it well.

I cherish my Celtic/Swedish heritage, mainly for laughs, knowing, as I do, that most of them were ne’er do wells, drinkers, gamblers on the Celtic side, drinkers, morose fornicators, etc., on the Svedish side. Oh yeah, Europe gave us wonderful things. I couldn’t survive without it musically, in literature, in art.

But basically, to Hell with it, and I say that in the friendliest way.

There is the next Christendom forming, should God be kind to let it gel. Christians were never destined to be more than a fraction of the population, anyway, and all the handwringing we can do won’t forestall a Muslim Europe, if God has decided to bring that judgment. We can pray, we should witness, but as the lights go out all over Europe, I don’t believe the world which God wants to save is going to be denied Ultimate Light.

[NFR: This is like saying, “I love my parents, but if they’re committing suicide, to hell with them.” — RD]

#14 Comment By Fr. Frank On September 21, 2017 @ 8:34 pm

Word on the street is that Cdl Sarah will be tossed out of the CDW in December in much the same manner as Mueller was tossed out of the CDF. I’d sure be happy if he were elected our next pope. Francis wants the Church to reach out to the peripheries? You can’t get much more peripheral than rural Guinea.

#15 Comment By BadReligion On September 21, 2017 @ 9:00 pm

Kitchen timer, remember that “Muhammad” among Muslims is like “Jesus” among Puerto Ricans. The fact is that, even with all the refugee flows, the European Muslim population is going to remain comparatively small. Fertility rates in most of the Muslim world are dropping, in some cases very rapidly, and the remittances that the new migrants will send home can only help with that.

On top of that, lots of non-Muslims migrate to Europe, and will continue to do so. They include African Christians, among others!

#16 Comment By charles cosimano On September 21, 2017 @ 10:33 pm

I thought he was going say something apocalyptic about the West but instead he just talked about Europe.

#17 Comment By Khalid Mir On September 22, 2017 @ 12:14 am

“You are invaded by other cultures,” says a man from Guinea!*Invaded*?! Or is that just a bad translation?

But I don’t get it. Seriously. All this doom and gloom, the morbid fascination with decline and end days.

Europe is in decline. Old hat.Compared to where, one wonders?

[NFR: I can understand why this doesn’t look like such a big deal to someone who is not a Christian. — RD]

#18 Comment By RJohnson64 On September 22, 2017 @ 12:26 am

If the good Cardinal’s warning to the west is to be taken seriously, perhaps it would be good to also hear his warning to the leaders in his homeland about female genital mutilation, which I understand has been inflicted on as much as 96% of the female population of that country.

What has Cardinal Sarah said about this atrocity? Or does his prophetic voice only extend to the West and less politically dangerous sins?

#19 Comment By Khalid Mir On September 22, 2017 @ 12:44 am

No, I understand how the decline of faith can be a tragic and sad thing to behold (and/or experience). But I wonder if it really is *just* a case of decline or if, as Charles Taylor indicates (over a wider horizon), it’s a change in religious sensibilities, a shifting to the expression of faith to the ordinary activities of life (work, family, etc.)-a ‘common faith’ (Dewey)

Do we have to accept, as I think Rowan Williams called it, periods of ‘dryness’?

#20 Comment By Khalid Mir On September 22, 2017 @ 12:50 am

Sorry, I think it was Marilynne Robinson not Rowan Williams.

#21 Comment By Will Harrington On September 22, 2017 @ 10:22 am


Just a point of clarification, off topic. The icons that show Christ as black are Ethiopian, and not all of those show him as black. It seems that Ethiopians were well aware that people who lived in different places looked different. Galilean Jews simply weren’t black. The oldest depictions we have of Christ were basically repurposing the image of Apollo and can be discounted. After that, we have the depiction we usually have today of a light skinned bearded man with long hair tied back (this is also a common depiction in Ethiopia where you might expect iconographers to use the color pallet most familiar to him.

#22 Comment By l’autre J On September 22, 2017 @ 12:49 pm

An older form of the West is dying, that’s true. Say farewell to it. Bob Taylor is right that was and is a diseased thing, and with it passes much derangement among native Europeans. The chapels and cathedrals are to some extent like sanatoriums, closing because the disease they were built around is diminishing.

My parents just came back from visiting friends and relatives in rural Europe and their story- sample size a couple hundred- is that it’s the same picture all over: the least mentally healthy third or half of the population is in social decline and disappearance and there seems to be no reversing it. Christian or non-Christian doesn’t seem to make much difference overall. The Christians seem to defer a portion of the falling down to the next generation, which crashes tragically hard because it got raised in a degree of social alienation and selfmarginalization under a doctrine of having a salvific/messianic role.

Sarah would be taken to be ignorant or simply Concern Trolling in online discussion. The general phenomenon occurring- inability of the psychiatrically unwell to thrive in Modern conditions and crumbling of the Agrarian Age institutions providing them with power and palliative therapy – is seen forming in non-white populations in Europe and North America and Oceania and portions of East Asia. It seems to have begun in portions of Latin America as well. There’s no true social or economic need to replace their numbers, so they’re not getting replaced.

If Sarah thinks the current Industrial Age state of affairs in equatorial Africa and interior portions of Asia will last beyond a few decades, he’s got another think coming. The Industrial Age conditions there won’t last an they’re going to crash numbers too. Don’t want to be there when they do.

The future belongs to significantly smaller, creative, healthy, and probably significantly admixed societies. Numberwise bloated, heavily psychiatrically ill, doctrinally monocultural/culturally narrow societies (Russia would be the prime example) are the diseased dinosaurs of our time.

#23 Comment By Hector_St_Clare On September 22, 2017 @ 1:03 pm

Bad Religion,

You’re correct that Muslims are not going to become a majority in Europe anytime in the foreseeable future. There are particular regions and cities though where the Eurabia phenomenon is not at all unlikely. London is projected to no longer be a majority ethnic English city sometime in the near future. And in any case, even if the mass migration situation isn’t going to entirely obliterate native European ethnicities and cultures the way some people think, there’s still more of it than I’d prefer to see.

On top of that, I’m not sure why you think it’s a consolation to me that many of the immigrants to Europe are African Christians. A Poland that five hundred years from now is inhabited mostly by Yoruba or Chinese Catholics would no longer be Poland, just as much as if it were populated by Tatar Muslims. In a deep and important sense the Tatars are actually closer to the Poles than either of them are to the Yoruba or Chinese (genetically, a lot of Muslim populations of Central Asia have a lot of Slavic influence).

I can’t speak for what concerns Rod, but my concerns are about ethnicity at least as much as religion.

#24 Comment By ginger On September 22, 2017 @ 1:17 pm

The urge to unleash my inner Cosimano here is nearly irresistible.

I’ll just say that I imagine his prophecy will have about as much impact on the masses as his exhortation not to use the smartphone/tablet as an aide to reciting prayers because apparently electronic devices desacralize prayer.


I’m sure he means well, but good luck getting people to lug books around when they have an entire library at their fingertips with their iPhones.

#25 Comment By Hector_St_Clare On September 22, 2017 @ 6:08 pm

To be clear, while I appreciate Cardinal Sarah’s concerns about demographic change in Europe, I still think he’s missing something when it comes to the solution. The only solution to the demographic pressures driving migration- as most authorities in Africa seem to understand- is combined economic growth and fertility reduction. Cardinal Sarah is hostile to the fertility reduction bit- not because he’s Catholic and certainly not because he’s Guinean, but because he’s a conservative on sexual ethics- and has called contraception and the sexual revolution one of the twin antichrists of our day. I don’t begrudge him his opinion, but I do think it’s irresponsible to be critical of efforts to lower African fertility rates in principle, even if you objection to contraception as the means. So I can only express partial agreement with the Cardinal here.

#26 Comment By Khalid Mir On September 22, 2017 @ 10:19 pm


hello! With all due respect, I think you’re wrong on London (you may be right when it comes to other places!).

Firstly, in your opening sentences you’re conflating religion with ethnicity. Secondly-and I suspect this is true for NY as well- lots of people who come to London consider themselves to be Londoners and not *just* Muslims, Bangladeshis or whatever.

Lots of people I know really like the place and feel pride in being a Londoner. The upshot is: identity is a lot more complex than the hate-mongers would have it: “us or them”.

Near where I used to live (and where my father worked) I’d see black kids from African backgrounds, Chinese kids, desis, East Europeans, Muslims, Jews.. Yeah, there are problems but I think you underestimate the power of friendship, language and human decency to bring us together.

This may sound superficial but television, sports, and schooling can also work in that direction.

#27 Comment By Thrice A Viking On September 23, 2017 @ 9:41 pm

I’m not so sure, Khalid Mir. Last time I checked, London was in the same country as Rotherham. Can we be sure that the London’s police force and/or Muslim immigrants are that much more enlightened than their Rotherham counterparts?

#28 Comment By Khalid Mir On September 24, 2017 @ 12:14 am

Well, no, we can’t be sure of anything. Despite decency and liberty being the fundamental ethos in England we’ve seen the rise of nasty groups over the last few years (Britain First, UKIP , ‘Islamic’ radicals (HT) etc.). So, yes, who knows.

As I said, there are serious problems and these can’t be ignored. But I think the main trajectory-at least in London-is for greater inclusion.

I think if you check again you’ll find London isn’t really in the same country! Do you actually know any British Muslims by the way? Just asking.