Yes, this is late. But the defence of out faith is never late. We are in a time of trial, where our democracy has become a soft dictatorship. We are told that we can meet no closer than 2 m apart, and no more than 100 people: this will require new laws, because the civil defense emergency act and the health act have been pushed beyond their limits. But our faith is not based on our circumstances, but a God who will raise up the leaders he needs for each time when they are required.
God is always faithful, and he will always leave a witness. In every generation and in every time. The witnesses may find their obedience leads to death, but they will leave their accusers with no excuse: be they Pharaoh or the Sanhedrin or the rulers in this broken generation.
3 Now Moses was pasturing the flock of Jethro his father-in-law, the priest of Midian; and he led the flock to the west side of the wilderness and came to Horeb, the mountain of God. 2 The angel of the Lord appeared to him in a blazing fire from the midst of a bush; and he looked, and behold, the bush was burning with fire, yet the bush was not consumed. 3 So Moses said, “I must turn aside now and see this marvelous sight, why the bush is not burned up.” 4 When the Lord saw that he turned aside to look, God called to him from the midst of the bush and said, “Moses, Moses!” And he said, “Here I am.” 5 Then He said, “Do not come near here; remove your sandals from your feet, for the place on which you are standing is holy ground.” 6 He said also, “I am the God of your father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.” Then Moses hid his face, for he was afraid to look at God.
7 The Lord said, “I have surely seen the affliction of My people who are in Egypt, and have given heed to their cry because of their taskmasters, for I am aware of their sufferings. 8 So I have come down to deliver them from the power of the Egyptians, and to bring them up from that land to a good and spacious land, to a land flowing with milk and honey, to the place of the Canaanite and the Hittite and the Amorite and the Perizzite and the Hivite and the Jebusite. 9 Now, behold, the cry of the sons of Israel has come to Me; furthermore, I have seen the oppression with which the Egyptians are oppressing them.
The Mission of Moses
10 Therefore, come now, and I will send you to Pharaoh, so that you may bring My people, the sons of Israel, out of Egypt.” 11 But Moses said to God, “Who am I, that I should go to Pharaoh, and that I should bring the sons of Israel out of Egypt?” 12 And He said, “Certainly I will be with you, and this shall be the sign to you that it is I who have sent you: when you have brought the people out of Egypt, you shall worship God at this mountain.”
7 The high priest said, “Are these things so?”
2 And he said, “Hear me, brethren and fathers! The God of glory appeared to our father Abraham when he was in Mesopotamia, before he lived in Haran, 3 and said to him, ‘Leave your country and your relatives, and come into the land that I will show you.’ 4 Then he left the land of the Chaldeans and settled in Haran. From there, after his father died, God had him move to this country in which you are now living. 5 But He gave him no inheritance in it, not even a foot of ground, and yet, even when he had no child, He promised that He would give it to him as a possession, and to his descendants after him. 6 But God spoke to this effect, that his descendants would be aliens in a foreign land, and that they would be enslaved and mistreated for four hundred years. 7 ‘And whatever nation to which they will be in bondage I Myself will judge,’ said God, ‘and after that they will come out and serve Me in this place.’ 8 And He gave him the covenant of circumcision; and so Abraham became the father of Isaac, and circumcised him on the eighth day; and Isaac became the father of Jacob, and Jacob of the twelve patriarchs.
9 “The patriarchs became jealous of Joseph and sold him into Egypt. Yet God was with him, 10 and rescued him from all his afflictions, and granted him favor and wisdom in the sight of Pharaoh, king of Egypt, and he made him governor over Egypt and all his household.
11 “Now a famine came over all Egypt and Canaan, and great affliction with it, and our fathers could find no food. 12 But when Jacob heard that there was grain in Egypt, he sent our fathers there the first time. 13 On the second visit Joseph made himself known to his brothers, and Joseph’s family was disclosed to Pharaoh. 14 Then Joseph sent word and invited Jacob his father and all his relatives to come to him, seventy-five persons in all. 15 And Jacob went down to Egypt and there he and our fathers died. 16 From there they were removed to Shechem and laid in the tomb which Abraham had purchased for a sum of money from the sons of Hamor in Shechem.
There are many who have been damaged by those who claim to be of religion. The first thing we need to do is speak truth, and acknowledge that this time and this generation we have all become functionally apostate and corrupt. I'm a Prod, but many of the men who speak truth are Papists or Orthodox. In my view, the hierarchy in most churches has been a vector for corruption for generations -- much of the Hatey put on Hillsong is because they don't bend (so they accuse the son of a broken man of the sins of his father). We need to align in this time around Christ.
Two years ago, I was sent to the English-speaking seminary in Rome for mature students. There's only one, so you can easily identify it. I lasted only two months before quitting. I came home and told the Bishop I had not only quit seminary but had lost confidence in the Catholic Church entirely. I remain a follower of Christ and recognise there are many good Catholic men in the priesthood even. But what I encountered disgusted me. I'd been warned ahead of time, but I wanted to believe they weren't false or at least greatly exaggerated by a world hostile to Catholicism. But I was wrong. Weak, effeminate gamma males clustered around Pope Francis, trying to ingratiate themselves, virtue-signalling their disgust with Trump and praying for 'unity' that excludes anyone who actually believes in Catholic doctrine. Theology classes taught by a nun who followed Bart Ehrman's narrative of Christianity; no sign of Thomas Aquinas anywhere; it didn't matter if you believed Christ was merely a cynic or sage, but woe betide the seminarian who showed up to Mass with a wrinkle in his stole.
As you might guess from the emphasis on pageantry over doctrine, most of the men were clearly homosexual although it was kept mostly on the down low - it was more the case that they were a favoured clique, which us 'normies' were more likely to catch toilet duties for weeks in a row. However, a priest I played pool with, drank beer with and shared many conversations, who'd graduated and returned to the UK, was recently jailed for two years for trying to arrange to have sex with a 2 year old boy - he'd been speaking to an undercover cop on grinder...gawd, and he was actually one of the guys there I thought was reasonably sane. For me, Catholicism will always have the literary giants (Tolkien, Chesterton, Belloc, Waugh...) and many great saints. But what exists in Rome today is a disgusting cesspit. During these strange days, I seek out the 'Alt-Christianity' followers of Christians - the men with chests found across Protestantism, Catholicism and Eastern Orthodoxy. It does mean that finding a place to worship can be difficult. I'm lucky to live close to an Italian priest who is worthy of the title.
The only good thing about hard times is that it refines the church. It is times of prosperity, when the world praises us, that we should worry. Stephen was the first martyr to a corrupt generation, and he won't be the last. But the corrupt elite who have converged with this world? Do not even eat with them.