Integralism, the Pope, and the Emperor

Cranach | 9/16/2019 | Staff
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As Christians wrestle with the problems of holding onto the faith in a time of unbridled secularism, Roman Catholic political theory is coming back with a vengeance.

This is evident in the debate between Sohrab Ahmari and David French, with the Catholic Ahmari arguing that the culture and the government must be informed and shaped by the church, while the evangelical French argues that the church must work not for dominance but for liberal democracy and religious liberty.

Protestants - Side - Ahmari–a - Position - Theology

Many Protestants are taking the side of Ahmari–a legitimate position, to be sure–but they would do well to be aware of how Catholic theology fits into these Christian political theories that are receiving more and more attention.

The Catholic political theory is called “integralism.” From the Wikipedia article:

Politics - Integralism - Integrism - Intégrisme - Set

In politics, integralism or integrism (French: Intégrisme) is the set of theoretical concepts and practical policies that advocate a fully integrated social and political order, based on converging patrimonial (inherited) political, cultural, religious, and national traditions of a particular state, or some other political entity. Some forms of integralism are focused on achieving political and social integration, and also national or ethnic unity, while others were more focused on achieving religious and cultural uniformity. In the political and social history of the 19th and 20th centuries, integralism was often related to traditionalist conservatism and similar political movements on the right wing of a political spectrum, but it was also adopted by various centrist movements as a tool of political, national and cultural integration.

As a traditionalist political movement, integralism emerged during the 19th and early 20th century polemics within the Catholic Church, especially in France. The term was used as an epithet to describe those who opposed the “modernists“, who had sought to create a synthesis between Christian theology and the liberal philosophy of secular modernity. Proponents of Catholic...
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