Not Church’s mission to battle secularism

Dear Editor, One would have to concur with Archbishop Neary that the Church has lost the battle with secularism (IC 13/11/2014). However, one would have to ask is it or was it the mission of the Church to do battle with secularism? I would suggest that the Church’s mission is to spread the Gospel and reveal the abundance of Christ and Christian love, especially at a time where so many people, the young in particular, are living in despair and suffering mentally. While our Church is the custodian of an abundance of healing we are hopelessly unable to reach out to where that healing is so desperately needed. That must urgently change.

May I suggest that a new evangelisation must seek to restore the dignity, self-esteem and freedom of the individual. Today all of us, but the young in particular, are disempowered by ‘deference’. This has infiltrated the Church, and has disempowered the Church’s ability to spread the Gospel.

For instance, in the Church we now have a predominance of the secular ideologies of ‘liberalism’ and ‘conservatism’. I would suggest, however, that being Christian would prove an embarrassment and disappointment to both liberalism and conservatism, and thus a Christian has no such secular identity or security.

Therefore I think that for the Church’s evangelisation to be successful it must have a distinctive role in education. That role must be innovative and include the teaching of philosophy which would facilitate the young to think for themselves and hence build up an immunity to the disempowering effects of deference. Thus, outside of the influence of deference one would have freedom, self-esteem and restored personal dignity. Such I believe is the mission of the Church – to facilitate people to do battle with themselves in order to reach wholeness and fulfilment.

Yours etc.,

John J. Lupton,


Co. Tipperary.