If the final few weeks of May were any indication, this June’s pride month noise will be louder and edgier than previous years. Already, the controversy surrounding Target’s new line of clothing, produced in partnership with a clothing company that also produces clothing to celebrate Satanism, has dominated the nation’s headlines. Incredulously, most mainstream media outlets (and a few “Christian” ones) have painted as the bad guys those concerned about children being groomed instead of the corporate and activist entities doing the actual grooming. However, there are plenty of people not fooled by this narrative, given the financial hit Target has already taken.
And then there is the strange saga of the L.A. Dodgers. After a rather public back and forth, the Major League Baseball team decided to platform an LGBTQ organization that is known for its hyper-sexualized performances that openly blaspheme Jesus and mock Christian symbolism. Such mockery would never be tolerated if directed at other religious groups. But in a culture lost in what might be called a “critical theory mood,” even the most extreme acts are seen through the lens of predetermined cultural groupings that have been given moral status. Not only did the Dodgers organization backpedal their initial reversal, the so-called “Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence” will now be given some kind of Community Hero Award.
In response, Christians must do two things. First, we can and should protest both with our voices and our pocketbooks. Dodgers players and Target shoppers will need to think through where the line of complicity is. Second, we should proclaim a better way. One of Chuck Colson’s closest colleagues and collaborators has an idea worth considering:
“By the authority vested in me by absolutely no one,” Professor Robert George of Princeton University wrote in an email last week, “I have declared June to be ‘Fidelity Month’—a month dedicated to the importance of fidelity to God, spouses and families, our country, and our communities.”
Perhaps the leading Christian legal thinker of our lifetime, Professor George worked closely with Chuck Colson and Timothy George on the Manhattan Declaration. The 2009 statement of conscience outlined Christian conviction on the areas of life, marriage, and religious liberty. It only makes sense that Professor George would suggest Fidelity Month as a time of intentional remembering of those allegiances so often scorned in a culture like ours. “Pride” for example asks us to prioritize desire and autonomy over allegiance to God, children, each other, and ultimately, to reality itself.
That makes June a particularly good month for Christians to be clear about where we stand, making the important decision to, as Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn put it, “live not by lies.” It’s never easier, in fact, to go along with something that isn’t true than during so-called pride month. Like when Israel would set aside days and seasons to remember and repent and recalibrate, why not choose to be intentional about making June something else: a time to remember and teach the next generation about our most important responsibilities as those made in the image of God.
In this email from Professor George, the task of remembering seemed to be of particular concern:
You may have read about the rather disturbing recent WSJ poll indicating a precipitous decline in our fellow Americans’ belief in the importance of such values as patriotism, religion, family, and community—the values that used to unite Americans despite our many differences.
“There are a million things we can and should do to restore the faith of our people,” George continued, “but I would like you to join in one small one.” Fidelity Month will launch with a webinar that is open to the public, tomorrow, June 1, at 2 p.m. EST. Professor George will be joined by Lila Rose of Live Action, Andrew Walker of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, Bill McClay of Hillsdale College, and others. Learn more and register for the webinar at www.fidelitymonth.com.
Also on the website, you can find the Fidelity Month symbol, a specially designed wreath that is,
representative of God and His eternal nature, while the openness at the top of the wreath is suggestive of a divine embrace. The branches and leaves that compose the wreath signify a family that is dependent upon and in union with God.
The star and stripe at the center bottom of the wreath symbolize our common union as Americans– “one Nation, under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.”
The color gold symbolizes generosity and compassion – virtues that are closely connected to fidelity (supporting it and being supported by it). Fidelity, generosity, and compassion are anti-narcissistic virtues, reflecting the knowledge – the wisdom – that everything is not “about me.” It is a recognition of the duties we have to others, and that our true fulfillment is to be found in serving others: God, our spouses and families, our communities and country.
The color blue, our background color, symbolizes truth, loyalty, responsibility, and peace.
The Fidelity Month symbol can be shared and posted on social media, and the Fidelity Month website includes other ideas for individuals, families, churches, and leaders to reframe the next month in a way that honors God, each other, our children, and our nation.
For more resources to live like a Christian in this cultural moment, go to breakpoint.org.