A lack of faith and courage among Christians is the primary block against a "Christian culture" during these times of predominant unbelief, said outspoken US Archbishop Charles Chaput.
"Unbelief – whether deliberate and ideological, or lazy and pragmatic – is the state religion of the modern world," he told Catholic scholars gathered in the US, according to the Catholic News Agency.
"The fruit of that orthodoxy is a compression and destruction of the human spirit, and a society without higher purpose. This is the logic of the choices that America is already making. But they can be unmade. And they can be redeemed."
"The central problem in constructing a Christian culture is our lack of faith and the cowardice it produces," the archbishop stated. "We need to admit this. And then we need to submit ourselves to a path of repentance and change, and unselfish witness to others."
He urged personal repentance and witness as the path to cultural renewal, in a speech at an annual convention of the Fellowship of Catholic Scholars, said the report.
Archbishop Chaput told the scholars that their task is to strengthen their zeal in advancing the Gospel, their courage in struggling against sin, and their "candor in naming good and evil."
"If you do only that, but do it well, then God will do the rest," Archbishop Chaput declared.
Comparing American Catholics to the ancient Israelites who "forgot their faith because they weren't taught," he said that if Catholics no longer know their faith or their obligations, "we leaders, parents and teachers have no one to blame but ourselves."
Christians' cowardice prevents cultural renewal, Archbishop Chaput tells Catholic scholars (Catholic News Agency)