John Horvat of the Return to Fatima blog has written a really good article on the latest Cultural Marxist propaganda tactic: Prayer-Shaming. Horvat has noted a recent trend in the Corporate Media of bringing on pundits and commentators who sneer after tragic incidents that prayer is useless; that community leaders offering prayer are evading responsibility, etc.
It's not a new phenomenon for Liberals to do this; but until recently they rarely spouted such sentiments in public. I recall a Leftist talk-show named Mike Malloy who routinely ridiculed prayer. Malloy got away with it because it was well known that he was a militant atheist. After a natural disaster or mass-murder, Malloy would laugh at survivors who attributed their survival to prayer and Divine Providence. "What about all of the people who died?" he would roar. "Do you think that they didn't pray too?"
As Horvat points out in his article, these people don't understand what prayer is or how it actually functions. But that aside, people like Malloy also don't understand Divine Providence. What may seem an evil to us may not so be in the larger scheme of Divine Will. In the Lord's Prayer, we ask that God's Will be done and that we be delivered from evil. Those whose prayers to live through a disaster weren't granted have presumably gone to Heaven in accordance with the Divine Will.
The conundrum which atheists propose dovetails into the larger question as to why God permits evil to exist or occur at all. The question has no simple answer, but suffice it to say here that all Creation is by metaphysical necessity imperfect vis-a-vis the Creator. Thus sin and evil are inevitable; but by their existence God may try not only our own Faith, but those of others. An evil man like George Soros isn't necessarily 'blessed' with undeserved wealth, power, and long life; and neither are his victims 'cursed' with the poverty and misfortunes that his crimes bring about. These are means by which God is ultimately glorified as Christ taught us in His parable about The Rich Man and Lazarus.
Thus it follows logically that times of affliction are the times when we must draw closer to---not further from---God in prayer. As the Old Testament prophet Habakkuk stated for us:
"And then God replied: 'Write down the revelation and engrave it on the tablets, so that heralds may run and proclaim it. For the revelation awaits an appointed time; it speaks of the ultimate end and will not prove false. Though its fulfillment lingers, wait for it; it will certainly come and suddenly when it does. You see that the enemy is arrogant and his desires are perverse, but the just shall live by Faith.'" (Hab. ii:2-4).
As Horvat notes, the real issue with these pundits is that they do not believe in prayer in the first place. "For them, prayer is a kind of therapeutic exercise for weak individuals who cannot face reality," he writes. Reality, to the unbelievers, is that the world is an evil place without any mitigation of the Good, which we must see through Faith. This leads to a point where Horvat says, "When they fail in life as all eventually do, they do not understand the meaning of suffering and become resentful."
And that resentment is really what is behind the Cultural Marxists' hatred for prayer and faith. It's a double-edged psychological sword: they hate the Faithful for finding peace in suffering and envy them at the same time.
Horvat makes the good point also that our political leaders are largely to blame for the prayer-shamers with their pat "our thoughts and prayers are with the victims" rhetoric that they cut-and-paste into every post-tragedy official statement. As Christians, we should deplore that kind of abuse and back our words with deeds as St. James rightfully says. The Corporate Media ignores those actions at the same time they pooh-pooh the power of prayer.
Our answer to prayer-shaming thus should be to respond with even more prayer. The Media is overtly hostile to acts of faith: as they are to everything good.