By Jonathon Van Maren
May 11, 2018 (LifeSiteNews) – Earlier this week, I spoke to a pro-life banquet in the little Saskatchewan town of Estevan, population 10,000. It was one of those prairie small towns where everybody knows everybody, where many people still live within shouting distance of where they were born, and where the local pro-life dinner was advertised everywhere from the leisure center to the storefront window of the local pharmacy. Both radio and TV reporters were at the dinner—160 people is a big crowd for Estevan, after all—and a local family sang a few beautiful songs accompanied by the violin and piano.
After I finished my speech, I took a few questions from the audience. One question from an elderly woman near the back of the church struck me as I considered it. How, she asked, do we find the hope to keep going when so many things in our culture seem to be going so wrong? With online pornography threatening our churches, marriages, and communities—I’d addressed that threat early on in my speech—and governments across the country that operate with contempt for parental rights and freedom of speech, how can we avoid despair?
The answer to that is a simple one: We don’t have a choice. Many decades ago, perhaps we did. We could raise our kids, go to church, build our own Christian schools, and the government would largely leave us alone. Ensuring that our homes remained porn-free could be as simple as some serious conversations and a decent sweep under the beds and through the closets once in awhile. Nobody demanded that Christian schools change their curriculums to advocate for unchristian ideas or lifestyles, and nobody demanded that people either approve of the latest progressive project or be damned as a bigot.
But that was then, and this is now. While Christian communities minded their own affairs, fundraising money for their schools and organizing church events and raising their children, the progressives were hard at work transforming the society around us. Now, progressive politicians in some provinces are determined to force Christian schools to implement curriculum that lauds unbiblical lifestyles, or face possible shutdown. Christian politicians are accusingly interrogated by progressive journalists as to whether or not they still believe in traditional marriage. Anti-Christian politicians demonize social conservatives in order to tar squishy conservative politicians with the same brush. Insinuations, if not assertions, are made in the press that to hold to the Judeo-Christian values of the last two thousand years makes you a hatemonger.