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Archbishop Nienstedt: believers must strive against materialism

Catholic World News - March 09, 2012

Believers must strive heroically against materialism in order for the New Evangelization to take root, Archbishop John Nienstedt of St. Paul and Minneapolis said in an interview with L’Osservatore Romano.

“American culture is characterized by a heightened individualism, a rampant secularism and a pervasive hedonism that tends to consider the self first, acquaintances second and the stranger last,” he said during a wide-ranging interview whose topics included the financial crisis, religious freedom, and social media. “The Church must be reawakened in the United States and Catholics need to learn — for only then will they love — their faith. And then, like the Christians of every age, our proclamation of saving truths will become performative: the world will know that we are Christians by our love.”

“The New Evangelization needs to propose the credible witness of contemporary saints who offer an alternative to the cynicism, the broken promises and the isolation of this present society,” he added. “Individual believers must take it upon themselves to fight heroically, within their own lives, against the tendencies of the day, including the rampant problem of materialism. Such models of sanctity need to speak eloquently and resolutely to the connection between faith and reason. This call must be extended to academics, artists and preachers. The New Evangelization will only be truly effective if the chasm between faith and reason can be repaired.”

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  • Posted by: Justin8110 - Mar. 10, 2012 9:39 AM ET USA

    Overall a great speech by the archbishop. It's nice to see some members of the episcopate waking up after all these decades. I'd just like to see them now put their money where there mouth is. After all, plenty of the last few Popes and bishops have said a lot of good and holy things but when it came time to act, to decide, nothing much happened. To coin a phrase of Obama "just words, just speeches" until their is action to back it up.

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