Review: ‘A World after Liberalism’

In the past few years, several murderous racists have shown a strange interest in demarcating their complicated relationship with Christianity, writes Jeet Heer at Commonweal.

Payton S. Gendron, who was arrested for shooting ten Black people at a Tops Friendly Markets store in Buffalo in May, raised the issue in his heavily plagiarized manifesto. In a “questions and answers” section, he takes up the question “Are you a Christian?” According to Gendron, “No, I do not ask God for salvation by faith, nor do I confess my sins to Him. I personally believe there is no afterlife. I do however believe in and practice many Christian values.”

It’s the issue of “Christian values” that makes Gendron’s affiliation with Christianity more complex. For the manifesto makes clear that Gendron’s racism includes the belief that “Christian values” are a significant component of “White culture.” He also accuses Jews of being demonic.

Gendron lists an array of other killers as his inspiration. They include Brenton Tarrant, who killed fifty-one Muslims in New Zealand in 2019, and Anders Breivik, who killed seventy-seven people, mostly teenagers, in Norway in 2011. Both men also defined themselves as unbelievers but cultural Christians, acting to defend the faith against secular and infidel (largely Islamic) foes. In his manifesto, Breivik told his followers that they “don’t need to have a personal relationship with God or Jesus to fight for our Christian cultural heritage.”

These three murderers are a new breed of crusaders: political Christians who kill on behalf of a faith whose tenets they don’t believe in. They are the most extreme and violent manifestations of an upsurge in white Christian identitarian politics throughout the lands formerly known as Christendom.

It’s one of the many merits of Matthew Rose’s A World after Liberalism: Philosophers of the Radical Right that it helps answer the question of how a figure like Breivik could both disavow Christian belief and claim to kill on behalf of “our Christian cultural heritage.”


Christianity’s Postliberal Critics ‘A World after Liberalism’ (Commonweal)

Cardijn’s classic ‘Challenge to Action’ relaunches

Frank Marriott

The Australian Cardijn Institute is publishing a new ebook edition of Cardijn’s classic “Challenge to Action.”

First published in Australia in 1955 by Geoffrey Chapman, Cardijn’s classic has remained out of print since Cardijn’s death in 1967.

Former YCW chaplain, Mgr Frank Marriott (above), from Bendigo, in Sandhurst Diocese, Victoria, will launch the book at a special online event that will take place at 7.00pm AEDT on Tuesday 8 December 2020.



The book contains several of Cardijn’s most famous speeches and writings, including his iconic “Three Truths” talk originally delivered at the First International Congress of the YCW in 1935, his 1948 lecture series “The Hour of the Working Class” and “The Young Worker Faces Life” from 1949.

It includes Cardijn’s keynote lecture to the First World Congress on the Lay Apostolate in 1951, a lecture that in many ways inspired and foreshadowed the Vatican II Constitution on the Church in the World of Today, Gaudium et Spes.

Register for the launch

When: Dec 8, 2020 07:00 PM Canberra, Melbourne, Sydney

Register in advance for this meeting (NB: required!):

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.