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Vampires are real.
No, really! However, I am not talking about the suave Bela Lugosi style fiends or the angsty teenage Twilight cast. I am speaking about a far more insidious vampiric force that is not so much after blood, but is after truth, reality, and meaning. This vampiric force is neo-modernism.
Neo-modernism is not terribly new. In fact, it is a revival of the plain old modernism that was thought to have had a stake put through its heart by Pope St. Pius X. But it had only retreated to the dark shadows, quietly infecting new disciples until it returned just like a terrible sequel to an already wretched film. Naturally, as in most sequels, the monster is stronger and has more tricks up its sleeve.
So, then, how is neo-modernism like a vampire? Neo-modernism, boiled down to its essence, views reality in terms of private consciousness and personal experience. To the neo-modernist, dogmas and truth are not solid realities, but instead are more like shells filled with something akin to “meaning-juice.” It is that “meaning-juice” that neo modernists crave. They suck it out and replace it with whatever new ideas their cabal has concocted.
Take, for example, the neo-modernist understanding of Jesus. On one hand, a neo-modernist will affirm that Jesus is a true historical figure, but on the other hand will attest that there is a separate “Christ of Faith.” This Christ of Faith is a shell into that has had various meanings and sentiments “developed” in an evolutionary way over time to meet the needs of various peoples. Some neo-modernists are fond of injecting a Marxist liberating warrior Christ of Faith into that shell, and others prefer a meek and friendly enviro-Christ. So, while the neo-modernist vampire uses the same words and dogmatic sentences, his meaning and understanding are entirely foreign to the Catholic deposit of the faith.
Not satiated by emptying dogmas, the neo-modernist vampires have left their mark on all areas of Christian life including culture and morality. A good way to tell if a neo-modernist vampire has been lurking about is to observe what sort of art is on display, as art tends to project the consciousness of the artist. Neo-modernist art tends to have a shriveled, reductionist, husk-like quality, as if the meaning has been sucked out and is waiting for new meanings to be injected.
Moral truths are also emptied of significance by neo-modernist vampires and replaced with whatever evolutionary dreams the collective personal consciousness has concocted to adapt to the times. It is not uncommon to hear that we have evolved to a point where acts once thought of as evil are permitted or even encouraged. Notorious homosexualist Fr. James Martin’s constant homosexual activism is a case and point of this vile activity.
Recent events and actions in the Church show that neo-modernism is entrenched in what may be a dominant position. For example, we’ve been reporting on the Association of US Catholic Priests working feverishly to empty and change the meaning of the priesthood. The number of bishops supporting this dissident organization is astounding!
However, neo-modernists are sadly mistaken if they think this dominance will have any staying power. Truth is truth, and reality is reality. The deposit of faith may develop, but it does not evolve, nor does it ever lose its revealed meaning. The Jesus of history is the very same Christ of faith who emptied Himself for our salvation. We cannot empty Him of meaning. His Truth will once and for all stake the vampire in the heart and set us free. Let us pray this happens soon!
Michael Hichborn is the President of The Lepanto Institute.