The battle for souls

16 Apr

by Patrick Novecosky

If there’s one thing that Lent has reminded me of, it’s that we’re at war. We’re in the thick of a battle for souls, and our eternal destination is one of two places.

Scripture and Church teaching are clear that heaven and hell are real — and that all souls in purgatory are destined for heaven. There’s nothing new in this. The battle for souls has been going on since the fall of man in the Garden of Eden. However, it seems we’ve forgotten about the battle. In the comfort of our modern world, it’s easy to forget that 3,400 children are murdered via surgical abortion every single day in America. It’s easy to forget that the multi-billion-dollar porn industry is destroying marriages and warping people’s sense of reality. It’s easy to forget that Christian values are under assault from our own government.

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Sen. Rick Santorum speaks at the 2014 Legatus Summit

Sen. Rick Santorum reminded Legatus members at its annual Summit last February that secularists are relentless in their efforts to change the culture, to remove every vestige of God and faith from the public square. Christians, he said, seem to have surrendered without a fight in the culture wars. His point is that we need to be equally relentless in our efforts to win back the culture — and, similarly, we need to be relentless in our efforts to win souls for Christ.

“America is broken because we’re afraid to fight,” he said. We must be committed, be all in, we must know what is on the line: “souls, eternal souls,” he said. “We don’t live in a time in America when we can afford to stop fighting.”

Legatus is the perfect venue for business leaders and their spouses to be formed for battle. Legatus exists to help its members “learn, live and spread the Catholic faith.” Formation happens at monthly chapter events, at conferences and pilgrimages, and through Legatus magazine. But that formation needs to be rooted in each member’s personal prayer and friendship with Jesus Christ. Without those roots, sunk deep into fertile soil, the culture will rip us out of the ground and blow us away like a tumbleweed rolling across the desert.

Bishop Daniel Jenky (left) strolls with Cardinal Raymond Burke

Bishop Daniel Jenky (left) strolls with Cardinal Raymond Burke

Post-Christian America is rarely friendly to those who take their faith seriously. In 2012, Peoria Bishop Daniel Jenky told a group of Catholic men in his diocese: “We can no longer be Catholics by accident, but instead be Catholics by conviction. In our own families, in our parishes, where we live and where we work … we must be bold witnesses to the Lordship of Jesus Christ. We must be a fearless army of Catholic men, ready to give everything we have for the Lord, who gave everything for our salvation.”

We are on the front lines of this battle for souls, where every person we encounter has an eternal destiny. Let’s do all we can to get to heaven and take as many people with us as possible.

PATRICK NOVECOSKY is the editor of this blog and Legatus magazine’s editor-in-chief. This article appears in the May issue of Legatus magazine. It is reprinted with permission.

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