Every now and again people ask the question “Why do Catholics blog?” In particular, why do amateur Catholics (like your blogmeister) blog? After all, on what authority do they take up their pen (umm… keyboard?) and take it upon themselves to be apologists for the Catholic faith? In this interview with Ignatius Insight, Gil Bailie gives a reason from von Balthasar:
At an earlier stage of our present crisis, Hans Urs von Balthasar, pointing to “the confusion of clerics and theologians,” insisted that lay Catholics “have the absolute duty to care for the condition of Catholicity,” adding with emphasis, “by protest if need be.” For a Catholic sensibility, of course, protest is always a last resort, and there are today enough signs of episcopal and clerical revitalization to make even less justified. But the lay Catholic’s obligation—in proportion to his or her respective gifts and competence—to “care for the condition of Catholicity” remains.
As distressing as our current situation can seem, we must keep before us the injunction we receive from the First Letter of Peter, that we must always be prepared to account for the hope we have in Christ (1 Peter 3:15) [see the banner of this blog!]. We must realize how hopeless a Christless world was and is and always will be. Christianity spread through the ancient world precisely because of the hope it gave to a pagan world desperate for it. At the very moment when civil order seemed to be dissolving, Christians—St. Augustine prominent among them—awakened a hope unlike anything the classical world had known. In the 21st century, under similar circumstances, it will fall to Christianity to supply a hope capable of filling the vacuum left by the naïve optimism of the modern era and the hollow nihilism of postmodern one.