"For years the number of faithful has been declining. The trend has swept across all of Western Europe, with churches forced to close in France and Belgium too. But in the Netherlands, Christianity's retreat from society has been particularly drastic. The Protestant Church alone loses some 60,000 members each year. At this rate, it will cease to exist there by 2050, church officials say. The trend has led to the mergers of churches from several communities. St. Lawrence in Bilthoven has consolidated its congregation with that of eight other churches. But none of these amalgamations need more than one church, one organ, and one altar crucifix. All the other chalices, crosses and pews need to be disposed of. The problem, de Beyer says, is that holy items don't sell particularly well. The buildings themselves quickly find new renters, though."
Read More: http://www.spiegel.de/international/zeitgeist/0,1518,805075,00.html
Western civilization and America in particular arose to heights of glory on the wings of Christian theism. But for over two-hundred years, rebellious Western intellectuals and their eager followers have been sawing away at the Westâ€™s Biblical foundations, even going so far as to declare the death of the Triune God.
German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche (1844-1900) realized that having imaginatively "killed" the Biblical God, the West could not possibly save the civilizational fruits of its faith, for the death of the Triune God means not only the death of the West, but the death of manâ€™s soul---of being, intellect, and will.
All of this means that with the rejection of its spiritual foundations, W. Europe has rejected the Way, the Truth, and the Life. Hence the pale horse has appeared in W. Europe in fulfillment of its' choice and is forcing it to commit suicide. And America is stumbling along in its wake:
"Republican conservatives should be worried. Evangelical churches that frequently support conservative candidates are finally admitting something the rest of us have known for some time: Their young adult members are abandoning church in significant numbers and taking their voting power with them."
(Young Evangelicals are Leaving the Church, http://www.wnd.com/index.php?fa=PAGE.printable&pageId=379193 )
The four horsemen of the Apocalypse are described in the book of Revelation. They appear when the Lamb (Jesus) opens the first four seals of a scroll with seven seals. As each of the first four seals are opened a different coloured horse and its rider is seen by the apostle John as described in Rev 6:1-8.
When the fourth seal is opened a pale horse appears, its rider is called Death and Hades is following close behind him. The pale horse symbolizes Nihilism--- nonbelief in oneâ€™s own self. Nihilism is the logical assumption if God the Father does not exist, therefore the pale horse is the harbinger of spiritual, moral and intellectual suicide. Nihilism signifies both the spiritual emptiness and the moral imbecility that lands indivduals and entire societies on the Highway to Hell.
Individual suicide, or spiritual death, results when the spirit of Nihilism forces open the door of the conscience, which it first seduces and compromises and then finally converts. Spiritual death is the severely sullied, seared conscience that enslaves the soul's will to the Devil, the father of nihilism.