Cardinal George Pell spoke at San Francisco’s Star of the Sea church for 34 minutes on December 8.

A few excerpts:

“Matthew Arnold in 1868 wrote “Dover Beach.” about the departure of faith….. We Catholics are here to stay. We are not going away….

“The best commentators on faith and morals have been in this country…. Previously there were great Catholic writers in England – Belloc, Chesterton, Tolkien. There were great writers on the continent. Especially at the time of the Council. They’ve all gone except for Joseph Ratzinger, our much loved Pope Benedict.

“So here in the United States we’ve got writers like George Weigel, Father Raymond D’Souza from Canada, Ross Douhat from the New York Times, Rod Dreher with his Benedict Option, and perhaps the most perceptive of them all, Mary Eberstadt. I recommend her book Adam and Eve after the Pill.

I want to cite her address to social scientists in September, “The Cross amid the Chaos…”

“We must be faithful to the Apostolic tradition of the Catholic faith. We are not the masters of the tradition. There are no back flips…. Look at Holland and Belgium and Quebec….

“After 400+ days in jail I came to believe in the value of redemptive suffering.”

“Chaos is the result of the secularist-wreckers – a tribal fretful void, regularly frightened. The fears of Covid and global warming prey especially on the young.

“One spectacular example from Japan. 43 percent of women and 23 percent of men 18-24 are no longer interested in sexual contact. They’ve been de-sensitized by pornography. A problem not just for Christians. As with the Manicheans and Albigensians the Church will need to show the value of sexual activity in marriage….”

After the cardinal’s talk, he took questions for over 20 minutes and ended with an anecdote about the English converts, Lord and Lady Longford, who were the parents of Reformation historian Antonia Fraser.

“Lady Lockford, one of the reporters said to her, you’re a Catholic. You’ve been married many years to your husband. Yes. Have you ever thought of divorce? And Lacy Lockford said no, never. But I’ve often thought of murder.”