“Europe is systematically and willfully failing to reproduce itself, with results that already pose serious social, political, cultural and economic problems—problems that will, if present trends continue, only intensify to the point of real crisis, and quite possibly grave fiscal and political instability, in the mid-twenty-first century. . . .
“Widely ridiculed at the time as a Hamlet-like pessimist—today, he would be pilloried as a “culture warrior bishop”—Paul VI now looks more and more like a prophet who looked into the signs of his times and saw, clearly, the future dangers encoded therein. Now, as I have suggested in several books, I think the goals of Pope Paul’s teaching would have been better served had Humanae Vitae been framed in the more personalistic categories and vocabulary proposed to the Pope by a commission of Krakow-based theologians assembled by Cardinal Karol Wojtyła. But that’s not the issue here. In terms of prophetic insight, Humanae Vitae was spectacularly right about the effects of the “contraceptive mentality” on the human future, as Pope Francis has readily acknowledged. And it requires willful blindness, historical obtuseness, and/or intellectual pride to deny that, especially when looking at Europe.” – George Weigel
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