Benedict XVI will go down as one of the greatest popes of all time. Indeed, he is already being acclaimed as probably the best theologian to have ever occupied the Chair of St. Peter. In addition, Benedict XVI was one of the most prescient of all the popes regarding cultural issues and was unafraid to speak the truth to the dominant elite culture.
One critical cultural issue that Pope Benedict XVI tackled head on was the demographic winter coming to Europe and the West. In his 2009 encyclical Caritas in Vertitate (Love in Truth), he stated a truth that could no longer be denied:
“Formerly prosperous nations are presently passing through a phase of uncertainty and in some cases decline, precisely because of their falling birthrates; this has become a crucial problem for highly affluent societies.”
Indeed, it is estimated that by 2100, Europe alone will lose almost 200 million people due to declining birthrates, as almost no European country has a birth rate of at least 2.1 children per woman, which is the rate needed to prevent population decline. Some European regions will be hit harder than others. For example, Central Europe is expected to lose 54% of its population and Eastern Europe is expected to lose 34% of its population. Losses in some countries will be catastrophic; by 2100 Bulgaria is expected to lose 63% of its people, Poland 60%, Serbia 53%, Italy 50%, Greece 47%, and Hungary 47%.
What is the main reason for this coming demographic winter? Benedict forthrightly states:
“These situations are symptomatic of scant confidence in the future and moral weariness.”
So what can be done to prevent the death of Europe? Promote and support the natural family. As Benedict declares:
“It is thus becoming a social and even economic necessity once more to hold up to future generations the beauty of marriage and the family, and the fact that these institutions correspond to the deepest needs and dignity of the person. In view of this, states are called to enact policies promoting the centrality and the integrity of the family founded as marriage between a man and a woman, the primary vital cell of society….”
Will Europe and the West finally admit that their countries are dying? And if so, will they listen to Pope Benedict XVI? It is literally a life and death situation for Western Civilization.
“And the radical LGBT agenda must be defeated….”
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