I am a Christian, and I am of my time.
Being Christian, and fully Christian, by which I mean Catholic, - living in the nineteenth century, I can see or feel that there is an opposition between Christian doctrine, to which I adhere with my whole being, and many ideas or trends of my time, from which I do not want to remain estranged and of which I am not the enemy.
I would like to examine in what this opposition consists. By studying it closely, I will better understand what Christian doctrine is and what my era is.
I shall have a more exact and profound notion of the Christian idea and of the Christian life.
I will unravel what our time has that is new, and among these novelties discern the genuine spirit of this century.
Comparing it with the true spirit of Christianity, I will seek to identify that which is in radical and definitive opposition to this spirit and that which, deviating from it only in appearance, will allow itself to be brought closer and which may even secretly aspire to be brought closer.
Translation of "Le Chrétien vis-à-vis de son temps"
Translator: Stefan Gigacz