Whether we like it or not as British citizens and residents of this country — and whether we are even prepared as Catholics to accept this reality and all it implies — the fact is that historically, and continuing right now, Britain, and in particular London, has been and is the geopolitical epicenter of the culture of death. Our laws and lawmakers for over 50 years or more have been the most permissively anti-life and progressively anti-family and marriage, in essence one of the most anti-Catholic landscapes culturally speaking than even those places where Catholics suffer open persecution.
England itself nevertheless has a unique Christian heritage: St. Augustine, the apostle to the English appointed by Pope Gregory, defied the temptation to despair of ever converting the pagan Britons by reminding the degenerate race of the beauty, truth and dignity of marriage. St. Bede’s chronicle of English Christianity recounts this strategy, and, as he put it, “England recovered.” England is also the “Dowry of Mary,” an ancient title going back to the 14th century and even further in the spiritual language of the people. This title signified the fact that from the earliest times English Catholic Christians revered the person of the Mother of Christ with such a singular and wholehearted devotion that the very nation itself was attributed with having a supernatural role (metaphorically-speaking) in the “marriage” between the Holy Spirit and his spouse — the Virgin of Nazareth. That is to say, English Christianity, in the plan of God, has a unique role to play in being a secure foundation (like a dowry in a marriage) to the work of redemption and salvation history globally. England was the first Christian nation to bestow upon the Church the formal solemnizing of marriages, which found expression in the Sarum Rite of Marriage.