Failing to meet your KPIs…

Archbishop Mark Coleridge is the head honcho of the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference.

That basically makes him the top dog within the Church in Australia.

And he just said this with, I’m sure, a pleasant smiley face:

I think we have to accept the fact that Christendom is over – by which I mean mass, civic Christianity. It’s over.

If the PM said Australia was over, he’d be replaced.

If the CEO of BHP said mining was over, there’d be a shareholder revolt and he’d be out the door.

If the AFL boss said AFL was over, there’d be riots and rogue footy matches played in the streets. And the ex-AFL boss would need a new job.

In any other business, these kind of words from this kind of leader would constitute an admission of failure. Miserable, hopeless, losery failure of the greatest kind.

But Coleridge isn’t in just any other business. He claims to be a prince of a divine organisation, backed by God Himself, which teaches that every nation has a duty to recognise Christ as King.

Whatever that looks like, it involves mass, civic Christianity.

Archbishop Coleridge’s claim that mass, civic Christianity is over is an admission that he’s botched his job. In business-speak, he’s missed his KPIs. And implicit within his lament is a complete loss of confidence in the power of God.

The only honourable path left open for Coleridge is to man up and admit that this occurred on his watch, under his command and while he was in charge.

And then he should resign.

I, for one, don’t believe that mass, civic Christianity is over. Quite the opposite. I believe that without mass, civic Christianity civilisation itself is over.

Sure enough, there are tough times for Christians ahead. Already you can lose your job for quoting the Bible. You can have your assets drained by anti-Catholic activists who deliberately use anti-discrimination law to vexatiously pursue you.

We’ve even had an Australian judge admit that he was under pressure to send men to jail because they are priests (and they are not my words but came from the judge’s own lips).

If Labor and the Greens gain control of parliament, it is likely that Catholic schools will not be able to teach the faith. Catholic bishops will be prevented from instructing at the pulpit. And Catholic parents could even lose their kids to gender-whisperers.

I greatly fear that within a generation Catholics will be imprisoned or executed. In Australia. For the crime of being Catholic.

There are dark clouds on the horizon.

That does not mean mass, civic Christianity is over. It just means that if we are to prevent this then we need to defend mass, civic Christianity more than ever.

Archbishop Coleridge is not doing that. Instead he’s waving the white flag.

And there is no greater proof of that than this: we are now in the 36th day of the Israel Folau frenzy which has gripped this nation since 10 April and Archbishop Coleridge has not uttered a single word on the issue in public.

Yet this is an issue that affects every lay Catholic. It is now clear that their livelihoods – their abilities to feed their families, pay their mortgages and raise their children – can be destroyed for their Catholic faith.

If Coleridge and his fellow bishops really cared about their flock they would be up in arms. But they aren’t.

If self-interest is buying silence from the bishops, it’s a doomed strategy. Just how long do you think they’ll be able to keep their titles and castles after they’ve sold out the faithful?

If mass, civic Christianity is over it’s got less to do with the Raelene Castles of this world and more to do with the fact that Catholic bishops have been too cowardly to speak about issues like the Folau saga for far too long.

And speak up they should: after all, sacking a rugby player for quoting the Bible is about as great an attack on mass, civic Christianity as you can get without bringing out the guillotines.

They aren’t far away. Liberty, fraternity and equality has been dusted off and modernised for our times: equality, diversity and tolerance. And the mob is gearing up its brutal intolerance against all who stand in its way.

Unfortunately, we’ve heard more about hell from Bill Shorten in the last month than we have from our Church leaders. And Shorten doesn’t even believe in hell.

This is the heart of the revolution. Our politicians are assuming the role of pope and our bishops are dealing with these issues like politicians.

Only the bishops can restore order and they can only do this by speaking bravely to defend and promote mass, civic Christianity.

Coleridge has given up on that. Unless another bishop steps up to the plate like a man, those dark storm clouds will only grow.

Author: Bernard Gaynor

Bernard Gaynor is a married father of nine children. He has a background in military intelligence, Arabic language and culture and is an outspoken advocate of conservative and family values.

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  1. Archbishop Coleridge is just stating a truth.
    Start embracing Vatican II and all its beautiful teaching and we will set the world on fire. If you don’t accept Vatican II, please don’t call yourself a Catholic. Stop bagging Pope Francis and pray for him – he’s an amazing man!
    Stop blaming the Bishops and start living and sharing your faith… Pray for our Church and its leaders!
    Join your local Legion of Mary and start supporting our priests from the ground up!!

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    • Vatican II with all its ambiguities has been embraced. And it has set the world on fire but not in the way you think.

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  2. It is the Roman Catholic Church that seems to be failing.
    The ‘Catholic Church ‘ is a world wide movement the Roman Catholics have the privilege of being a part of.

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  3. The mess out here is because of the mess in the church, Weak leadership, we have to defend ourselves against this demonic attacks on our families and this clown is saying we are defeated. Thanks to these weak-kneed bishops we are not defeated and we will never be defeated because Christ is the king of kings and Lord of Lords. In him we trust, pity our weak-kneed spinless bishops do not trust in him. “The road to Hell is paved with the skulls of bishops”.

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  4. Ironic that the “mob” is made up largely of “white” inner-urban leftists who live privileged lives thanks to the very values they are so keen to destroy. The irony is astounding.

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  5. Then one day, everyone started wondering, “where did our civic society go?”

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  6. I cannot idly sit by and let these things be said about the good archbishop. I have heard him say this long before the Folau controversy and he is correct. Mass civic Christianity doesn’t exist in this country in the way it did last century.
    Churchmen are not measured by KPIs Bernard – look through the Canon of saints and see how many haven’t had very good “KPIs” -even our Blessed Lord Himself.
    What is called for by each of us is to be more like Him and to invite others to know and love Him. And I can’t see how that is served by attacking bishops.

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    • Thanks Rob. I appreciate your comment and I am glad that someone is prepared to defend him.

      To be honest, I would love nothing more than to be wrong about Archbishop Coleridge and the bishops in general. I would love to think that the Catholic Church has become meaningless and irrelevant and the empty shell it is in our society despite the bishops’ best efforts.

      But I can only see evidence that it is as a direct result of their efforts. They are failing to teach the faith.

      And if I look through the Canon of the saints I will never find a saint that said publicly on the eve of a move to legalise abortion that they were not opposed to its decriminalisation. Coleridge could become a saint (as we are all called to be) but he won’t become one while he holds that position.

      At least the Archdiocese of Brisbane had the wisdom to take the Archbishop’s video down. In that debate, like so many others, he has failed the Catholic laity who worked tirelessly, risking their livelihoods, to defend justice and truth. And don’t even get me started on his public failure during the homosexual marriage debate to explain Catholic teaching when asked on multiple occasions to do so.

      Whatever Archbishop Coleridge’s intentions are (and I don’t claim to know them), his actions do not help Catholic laity in the political fights of our day.

      Despite everything the Catholic Church remains the largest religious organisation in Australia. Public Christianity does not need to be on the ropes in this nation. But it is. At the end of the day, the bishops collectively need to take responsibility for this.

      This was true before Folau. It would be true without Folau. But the silence over Folau is indicative of leadership that is paralysed and too cowardly to act.

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      • How right you are Bernard. The Catholic church in Australia is the weakest it has ever been. I for one could no longer go along with the Catholic Church who told me when my husband left for another women that I could have an annulment. We had been married for 20 years with 3 children. I am a Christian who believes that the Bible is God’s holy Word to us. You and your wife are true Christians who are fighting the good fight and don’t forget that there are many Christians on your side in the battle you are going through against the devil and his workers.

      • Hi Jillian – I feel for you. It is a hard situation.

        But please remember that just because individuals who hold positions of authority inside the Church can do the wrong thing, it does not follow that the Church itself is wrong. It is God’s divine institution and our path to salvation.

  7. The “Archbishop” is right, as in the “Church” of Vatican II is dead. We have to return to the true Mass, true Sacraments and true faith and slowly rebuild. “By their fruits you shall know them”. This happened during the “Reformation” and the exact same thing as Cranmer, Luther and the like did to the Church at the end of the Middle Ages was done to the Church by “Pope” Paul VI at Vatican Council II.

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  8. I nomimate for the position of Archbishop, a person who has the key-KPI-credentials, Israel Folau.

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  9. Um that’s why I don’t go to a catholic Church anymore much..except for kids school stuff. Church of England standing up…kinda

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    • The Catholic Church is the true church.

      Just because bishops don’t teach the faith or defend it does not mean that those teachings are incorrect.

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  10. I wonder if he is not being a realist and a practiced student of the Bible. Christians are not promised a bed of roses, and Christ was given a crown of thorns. Historically, the Church has never known the peace and prosperity that has been enjoyed in the west since the post reformation/counter ref days. But to look in countries such as China, Pakistan, Russia, North Korea, etc, it is almost a death sentence to profess Christian faith. Why should the Christian Church in Australia be any more privileged and what has that privilege wrought. Christ says He will build His Church, and that relieves the Bishop from the KPI test. The Bishop is to be faithful and preach the full gospel of Christ, feed the flock and protect from wolves. There will come a time that the full number of those predestined unto redemption has been reached and God will signal the trumpet sound. Perhaps that time approaches and there are fewer now remaining to be called than there were 5 years or 2 months ago and some purification of the Church, by persecution, is due for the perfecting and preparing of the bride for her Groom, for lo, he comes quickly and will receive His own to Himself.

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    • It’s not realist to basically abandon attempts to proclaim the faith in public.

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      • Yes Bernard, I was heading to say something similar.

  11. “All the strength of Satan’s reign…

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  12. The treatment of Folou s dkgrceful and so are some of the ludicrous remarks of aspirant Prime Minister and supposed Christian, Bill Shortenings!

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  13. What an appalling defeatist statement by a Catholic Archbishop and an indicator of why- with such negative leadership -the Catholic Church is in trouble and in decline. The Church needs an infusion of real men -as were the Apostles of old -fired with enthusiasm for the sharing and spreading of Christ’s message to the world -to bring about -The City of God

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    • Obviously a man of his convictions.

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