The future is bright. The future is clean. The future is porn-free, pill-free and very big on foetal rights. Mel Gibson will love it. He'll come in his pants most probably, but he'll feel wicked for days afterwards. He'll have to flagellate himself to within an inch of his life as a result. But it'll be worth it. Because the future is God's will. But the most exciting news of all is that the future is very, very close at hand...
When tiny Tom Monaghan was just three years old, his father died. On Christmas Eve. Imagine that. Heart-breaking for sure, but in the grander scheme of things, maybe it was for the best. For if his father hadn't prematurely shuffled off his meat coil, Tom and his brother would not have been packed off to an orphanage to be brainwashed by gangs of vicious Catholic nuns; then years later, long after Tom had become a multi-millionaire on the back of his Domino's Pizza empire, he would not have been so moved by the CS Lewis book he read on Christianity, that he would not have remembered so clearly the message of the scriptures as bullied into him at that early age, and - almost certainly - he would not have piped his fortune into hardline Catholic philanthropy. And if that hadn't happened, Ave Maria, Monaghan's very own Catholic kingdom in the heart of Florida, would not now be well on its way to completion. And frankly speaking, the future wouldn't be anything like so bright. Three cheers for Jesus then. Hip hip...
The flurry of stories following the construction of Ave Maria this week concentrated on the town's prohibitive aspects; on the fact that newsagents will not sell porn, pharmacies will not sell contraceptives and cable TV will not feature flesh channels. But there is of course, much more to Ave Maria than mere sex-fear. There is also God-fear, and mountains of it. Essentially, Ave Maria will be a town like others, except that it will be run along strict Catholic lines. Here it is.
But why is Ave Maria being built at all? What's wrong with the many, many towns that already exist in this world? Well, according to those who know him, Monaghan is said to be deeply disturbed by the rise of militant Islam, and the fact that we in the West don't have something equally robust, and equally irrational and implausible, with which to combat it. Nicholas J Healy, President of the Ave Maria University, echoed Monaghan's views in a speech he gave students last year at the university's interim site. He spoke of the 'virtual collapse' of a Europe which he said 'does not even seem to believe in a future.' He cited the falling birth rate as proof of this. 'Children,' he said, 'are a sign of hope and the fruit of obedience to God's command to be fruitful and multiply.' He also warned that Islam 'no longer faces a religiously dynamic West'. These then are the reasons that Ave Maria must be brought forth into existence. Because America needs a filth-free town where they can breed an army of super-devout Catholics strong enough, mad enough, sex-starved enough to take on the Muslim hordes.
Naturally, hand-wringing, porn-lapping Liberals are up in arms, pointing out that even if you build your own town, you cannot impose law upon that town as if you were an autonomous government. Monaghan is not fazed. He welcomes the publicity that any lawsuits may bring his Catholic Utopia, and he knows he will prevail. He knows this because Ave Maria is God's will.
Furthermore, if God is not prepared to offer personal temporal support in times of need, Monaghan has lots of other supporters who will do just as well. Jeb Bush, for instance, who was there at the launch of the construction of the university two weeks ago, talking about 'pride' and 'timeless values'. Then there's Father Joseph Fessio. As well as being Jesuit Provost of the university, Fessio is also a very close friend, acquaintance and indeed publisher of Pope 'Dirty' Ratzinger. Monaghan then, has friends in very high places. There is no doubt whatsoever that his dream will become a reality.
Indeed, if everything goes according to God's plan, and there's no reason it shouldn't, residents can start moving in to Ave Maria in Spring of next year. All 30,000 of them. And once they're in there, they can start breeding.
One thing is for sure. When the town is finally up and running, we sure as hell won't be the only ones praying for a hurricane.