There were great advantages and yet great disadvantages to "Christendom." The advantage was that there was a common language for public moral discourse with which society could discuss what was "the good." The disadvantage was that Christian morality without gospel-changed hearts often led to cruelty and hypocrisy. Think of how the small town in "Christendom" treated the unwed mother or the gay person.
Hat tip: More Musings on Christianity, Homosexuality & the Bible
And psssst: while you are over there, take the time to read her story about Gregg and Joel (there is no permanent link so you'll need to look for the title in the left sidebar under the heading: What Else.
It is a hauntingly touching story that I've thought about over and over the past few days. Well worth the read.
Thanks Jarred for pointing me to it.