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It was in the December 1959 edition of The Christian Democrat, the voice of the Catholic Social Guild, that the esteemed English Jesuit Father Paul Crane, S.J., announced a name-change effective from the following month. Thus, in January 1960, Christian Order emerged without fuss or fanfare of any sort and blissfully unaware that it would soon become the British linchpin of a Catholic counter-revolution.

In the years following the Vatican Council, the Old Mass famously became the centre of Christian Order's Catholic resistance to the Modernist revolutionaries and their manic efforts to Protestantise the Faith anew. As it ventured more and more into the liturgical, doctrinal, moral, catechetical and ecumenical fields, however, word was passed down from the Jesuit powers on high that "Father Crane should stick to the Social Question." But he was not about to confine himself to his renowned specialty, Catholic social teaching, when virtually every facet of Church life was under attack. To do so would have meant betraying the Lord and a multitude of His orthodox flock who, shepherdless and besieged, looked to Christian Order for direction, instruction and solace: for the Truth!

Perhaps no local Church in the postconciliar age has owed so much to the sustained effort of one publication. Week in and week out the 'so-called Catholic press' in Britain spreads error and doubt and wastes its time appeasing or praising the enemies of Catholicism. Month in and month out Christian Order defends and propagates the Faith with conviction, while not hesitating to publicly rebuke wayward and recalcitrant bishops as St. Augustine and St. Thomas Aquinas insisted we must do when the Faith is endangered. Indeed, since Father Crane's sudden death in 1997, we have become even more outspoken in response to the catastrophic scale of dissent throughout the United Kingdom and the impending demise of the local Churches, which some English bishops have admitted will come to pass within the next generation. While others keep their heads down and await with the best of British reserve some kind of miraculous bail-out, Christian Order is more bellicose about the situation. We believe it is way past time for an urgent wake-up call; for raised voices; for a little arm-waving and excitement to direct attention to the British farm burning down behind a soporific Catholic populace; for some accusatory finger-pointing at those clerics who daily fan the rising flames by their sins of omission and commission.

Christian Order leaves the rest to worry about the celebrated 'conversion of England'. We are more concerned about the re-conversion of Catholics! First things first! Obedience to Catholic doctrine and discipline - to Papal and Magisterial authority - matters above all else, since a healthy Church precedes and gives rise to a healthy State. That is the natural order of things ordained by God. All the heartfelt social justice documents and fretting about the state of the world by churchmen will come to nought without a self-confident, orthodox Catholic laity faithful to Tradition. Christian Order contributes to that eventuality by feeding its readership a steady diet of Catholic truth. By pulling no punches in its assessment of the present Catholic malaise, it also provides readers with a better understanding of the negative ramifications of dissent and disobedience on the life of the Church - thus motivating them to even greater prayer and work as part of the Catholic restoration.

Unless the Church is militant, She cannot thrive and flourish. Thus Christian Order is a militant antidote to the secular "live and let live" attitude which has brought the Church low. For forty years it has embodied that uncompromising spirit demanded by Pope Leo XIII, who contended that in times of necessity each Catholic is "under obligation to show forth his faith to instruct and encourage other of the Faithful" [Sapientise Christianae]. We therefore urge you to take out a Christian Order subscription today, to ensure that one of the precious few European voices for orthodoxy and tradition continues its mission for Christ and His Church well into the new millennium!

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