Screwtape’s Counsel on Exploiting the Pandemic

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by Giuseppe Pellegrino  •  ChurchMilitant.com  •  March 26, 2020   

Devilish advice on how to further weaken the Church

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My dear Wormwood,

I am exceedingly pleased to see how efficiently and swiftly you have shut down the Enemy's chief weapon, the "Holy Mass" and the other sacraments.

Your careful preparations, the painstaking efforts you have made over many years to weaken people's faith in the Real Presence of the Enemy in the Eucharist and in the spiritual and physical healing power of all the sacraments, are now really bearing fruit.

They are in a time of great need and assailed by fear, and they don't even know what their greatest weapon in the battle is. Well done!

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I must admit that I expected some of the Enemy's officers, the bishops, to object to the ban on public worship that the state and their superiors have foisted on them, but it appears that our efforts to create a culture of fear, peer pressure and unquestioning obedience in their ranks have succeeded to an unprecedented extent.

And of course, the priests are following suit — they wouldn't dare disobey the men who have obviously done such a fantastic job of leadership in recent years.

You are really proving your worth in all the mischief you have been creating of late.

The culture of fear we have worked so hard to create within the ranks of the clergy has never been more apparent than in the wholesale unquestioning obedience they are showing to the "cease and desist" order against the Mass!

Now that we have accomplished our objective of preventing all those disgusting little human vermin from receiving Holy Communion (and just in time for the Enemy's biggest "feast" of Holy Week and Easter, no less!), I would like to give you a few suggestions as to how you may exploit the present opportune situation to full advantage.

  1. Keep inspiring prelates to emphasize that the sacraments are optional. Get them to say things like, "We don't really need these signs and symbols; we can go straight to God." This way, even if the public Mass ever is restored, many people will have decided that they quite prefer not going, and since "God is everywhere" they will no longer feel any need to attend those bothersome, boring, germ-filled services.
  2. Continue to keep everyone's focus on physical health and sanitary guidelines. This is quite easy to do in a culture that has become so fixated on the care of the body and earthly goals. Convince them that it would be terribly "selfish" to want to receive Communion because there is risk involved, even though this has always been the case. Make "avoiding death" their number one priority, even though there is absolutely no way for even one of them ultimately to succeed in this endeavor — the fools! 
  3. Inspire Church bureaucrats to put in continuous plugs for "online giving" even though their franchises are no longer providing any services. This will even further frustrate the "little people" and alienate them from their "corporate bosses" — and after all, it is the little people who are our real target.
  4. Get Catholics and Christians of all sorts of ideological backgrounds to bicker and quarrel with each other more than ever. Convince some people that Mass was so offensive to the Enemy that he is actually happier now that public Masses have been shut down. Inspire them to tell others that "God wants this ban on the Mass" so that he can draw good out of it. While, of course, we can't deny that the Enemy always brings good out of our best efforts to do evil (confound him!), this sort of thinking will make the Enemy seem terribly confused: First he said, "Do this in memory of me" and now they think he is saying, "Don't do this!" It will make many people apathetic to any need for church and religion at all!
  5. Keep creating opportunities for prelates to avoid answering the many difficult questions that have been posed to them of late about the rampant spread of cover-up in their ranks. The Wuhan virus epidemic is a great distraction to get people's minds off the epidemic of corruption among bishops and chanceries that is just as insidious. The longer they can avoid answering hard questions, the better for our efforts to weaken the Enemy's cause through moral rot within his army's officers.

Finally, my dear Wormwood, I want you to know that I will be putting in a good word for your promotion. You are really proving your worth in all the mischief you have been creating of late.

Your work now rivals and perhaps even exceeds those of our finest colleagues who worked in Russia during the Stalinist years to close churches, paralyze people with fear, and convince the clergy that good citizens always obey the directives of the state and good clergy always do what they are told by their superiors.

I shall see to it that your hard work promptly receives the recognition it deserves!

Your affectionate uncle,

Screwtape

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