Culturizing Christianity, by contrast, means not only sacrificing its ineffable nature but also running into a thicket of postcolonial syllogisms. It may well be that J.S. Bach wrote the greatest music known to man, but as an 18th-century European he was also by definition an imperialist monster. Yet Bach himself would have recognized his music as distinct from the religious experience that inspired it, as something sacred but not itself holy. It is precisely for this reason that Christian countries became the originators of secularism, so that the state does not open windows into men’s souls; and, in turn, men’s souls do hawk themselves in the street. The downside of this separation is that when the cultural wolf does enter the religious henhouse, the hens must fend for themselves.

There is also a deeper rationale at work, drawn from Christian theology itself: that the faith is not set up for worldly respect. Jesus may be Lord of heaven, but the “Lord of this World” is someone quite different—the Devil. As prophesied, those who choose him will enjoy rewards on earth. Fan of metaphysical conspiracy theory will recognize this is as the basis of the famous “10 Point Plan” put forward by theosophist Alice Bailey. It outlined the key means of subverting Judeo-Christian societies—specifically by targeting normative notions of family, faith, and beauty; and especially among the young. This program was allegedly taken up by the founding fathers of the U.N. in their early conclave on Costa Rica, under the auspices of avuncular megalomaniac—and Bailey fan—Robert Muller. Looking around, I think we can all agree that Alice and Robert deserve a cigar. Their promise—that those who attack God will enjoy worldly approbation—bears more fruit with the passing years, not least in the blizzard of flashbulbs that greeted the craven red-carpet munchers of the Met.

Which leaves us with only one question: Why do the churches go along with it? Here too I refer you to the automatic writings of the good Ms. Bailey. The very keystone of her plan was that the church itself not only accept but endorse each pylon of its own teachings being kicked away. So it is that the Church of England’s website now offers ordination to those of all genders and none; and that a former Archbishop of Canterbury took his place among the communitarian shock troops of the Common Purpose organization. When it comes to the Catholics, the social(ist) gospel of the current Papacy offers a perfect placebo for the real thing. Being hand in glove with globalism of course means shedding some—if not all—of the precepts of the actual faith. And what better or more public occasion than the Met Ball?

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