Magazine October 5, 2020, Issue

Rod Dreher’s Advice for Christians in a Secular Age

Deacon Robert Lavanco prays with local residents during a Blessed Sacrament procession while their church sanctuary is closed in Queens, New York City, May 24, 2020. (Mike Segar/Reuters)
Live Not by Lies: A Manual for Christian Dissidents, by Rod Dreher (Sentinel, 256 pp., $27)

In an indoctrination camp set up for reeducating China’s Uyghur Muslim minority toward Marxist conformity, instructors command prisoners to acknowledge their errors of conduct and repeat again and again, “We have done illegal things, but we now know better.” So reported the Associated Press in 2018.

One by one, internees abase themselves before 60 of their fellow prisoners, repenting of their errors in thinking and their nonprogressive religious practices. “The detainees would also have to criticize and be criticized by their peers,” confided an eyewitness to these struggle sessions. “Those who parroted official lines particularly well or lashed into their fellow

This article appears as “Standing Firm against Darkness” in the October 5, 2020, print edition of National Review.

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James E. Person Jr. — Mr. Person is the author of Russell Kirk: A Critical Biography of a Conservative Mind and Earl Hamner: From Walton's Mountain to Tomorrow.

In This Issue



Education Section

Books, Arts & Manners


The Week

The Week

When Speaker Nancy Pelosi was photographed in a San Francisco hair salon, in violation of local lockdown rules, her defense was . . . interesting.


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