During an argument with a Catholic Cardinal, Napolean Bonaparte burst out with arrogance, "Your Eminence, are you not aware that I have the power to destroy the Catholic Church?" The Cardinal, responded, "Your majesty, we, the Catholic clergy, have done our best to destroy the Church for the last 1,800 years. We have not succeeded, and neither will you"
While it is true that Satan continually attacks the Catholic Church from both within and without, what makes anyone think that he is winning the battle? The Church was founded and built by Christ. It was never built by human hands. Christ said that the gates of Hell will never prevail against His Church, and His words are true. Anyone who thinks that the Church is losing the battle only reveal their lack of faith. The Catholic Church still stands today because Christ is her Head, and the Holy Spirit guides her into all truths. For over 2000 years, Satan has been attacking the Church, but he has never come close to defeating her. The Church prevails:
1. The Church was persecuted by the Jews. They persecuted Christians left and right. And what happened to them? Saul, a Jewish Pharisee, was converted and became one of the greatest Apostles for the Gentiles. Christ's prophecy of the Jewish temple also came true. The temple was destroyed in 70 AD, and the Catholic Church continued to grow.
2. Then came the Roman pagans who also persecuted Christians left and right. And what happened to the Romans? A pagan Roman emperor, Constantine, converted to Christianity. The Roman Empire began a long decline, and then fell. It never recovered. The Catholic Church, on the other hand, continued to grow.
3. Then came Islam in the Crusades. While Islam is still here today and continues to persecute the Church, it has not defeated the Church. It still stands today. Despite these persecutions today, many Muslims are converting to Christianity even in the midst of the violence.
4. Heretics have been attacking the Church from the beginning. What happened to these heretics. They eventually died out. Why? Because it did not come from God, but came from human inventions. Occasionally, some of these heresies would crop up and like chameleons who change their colors, they disguised themselves with new names. Nevertheless, the Catholic Church continues to grow. What comes from God will always continue to grow.
5. Then came Protestantism, which was started by Martin Luther in 1521. Ten million Catholics left the Church to become Protestants, but that did not destroy the Catholic Church. Ten years later, the Catholic Church gained 10 million converts in Central America starting with the miracle of our Lady of Guadelupe, and the Church continued to grow. What happened to Protestantism? It became fragmented into pieces. There are approximately 40,000 non-Catholic sects in the world today that call themselves "Christians." Our non-Catholic brothers have not learned that a house divided against itself cannot stand (Matthew 12:25) and a house built on sand and not on the "rock" (Matthew 16:18), will be washed away (Matthew 7:21-27).
6. Adolph Hiter and Nazism rose to power. Hitler vowed to destroy the Catholic Church. Hitler is gone and Nazism fell. But the Catholic Church continues to grow.
7. Then came communism with 75 years of terror. Eastern Europe was behind the iron curtain. The USSR, Ukraine, Lithuania, Poland and many other countries were under the rule of communism. Where is communism today? Communism in the USSR has fallen, and Catholicism has made a comeback in those countries. It rose from hiding after communism fell.
8. Despite the persecution of Christians, the Catholic Church in Japan managed to survive without priests for 250 years. With only the sacrament of baptism and the transmission of faith, the Catholic Church in Japan survived. It did not die out because what comes from God cannot be destroyed.
The Catholic Church continues to stand and survive because Jesus Christ Himself said it would (Matthew 16:18, 28:20, and John 14:16-17). Christ is the Head of the Church, and it has always been Him who led and guided her no matter who sat in the Chair of Peter and no matter the fact that the Church was filled with sinners. After all, Christ built the Church FOR sinners. Anyone who says that Satan is winning the battle against the Catholic Church lacks faith and does not know God and His Church.