Western culture is in the midst of a sea change—the Great Reset, the New Reformation; the Upheaval, the Great Transformation; it has different names but the same substance—and the Catholic Church is both victim and agent in this crisis. Catholic churches in the western world, Europe and North and South America specifically, are emptying. Many Catholic institutions have lost or softened their Catholic character. Christian young people and adults often seem cocooned by a web of technology, social media, and materialist culture. Catholic leadership, even at it most senior levels, can appear confused and ambiguous.
The Church is always in need of self-examination and reform; but few moments in history have evidenced that need in so obvious and pressing a way as our own. Personal holiness—the hard work of personal reform—is always the first step in any effort for Church renewal. But many practical areas of our shared ecclesial life also need urgent and serious review . . . and where necessary, rethinking.
The purpose of “What We Need Now” speaks for itself. As a Substack, it will publish essays and interviews that address the nature of today’s cultural realities, and the need for faithful, authentic Christian reform. Our goal will be frank but constructive reflections and guidance that can help Church leaders pursue lifegiving renewal. Content will be guided by five qualities: fidelity; intelligence; prudence; candor; and courage. Bitterness is not on the list.
We invite submissions touching on moral and systematic theology, Church governance, canon law, apostolates of renewal, today’s cultural and pastoral terrain, and all things that relate to the life of the Christian believer. Essays and interviews will be in long form (1,500 to 2,000 words) and include insights from the social sciences. Along with original pieces, this Substack will link to other noteworthy articles that contribute to the conversation.
Anonymous submissions are strongly discouraged. They may, however, occasionally be accommodated due to the toxic, reprisal-heavy nature of today’s cultural and ecclesial conflicts. All published reflections will be offered in good faith by men and women with competence in particular ecclesiastical disciplines or relevant personal/cultural experience. We entrust this work to Mary, Mater et Magistra, Mother of the Church.
Join us on the mission of the authentic, faithful reform. Subscribe now!
What is a Substack?