Default Thumbnail Default Thumbnail

perspective

Catholic Democrats and abortion: same old same old

A thought exercise: It’s 1964, and Congress is debating the Civil Rights Act. For years, the Catholic bishops of the United States have taught that segregation is an offense against […]

Default Thumbnail Default Thumbnail

perspective

The episcopal opportunity

The late Ronald Knox was thought to have a sterling wit, but I’ve never found anything of his as funny as a proposal attributed to his brother, Wilfred: like Ronald, […]

Default Thumbnail Default Thumbnail

perspective

Reclaiming America’s cathedral

St. Patrick’s is, arguably, the most famous Catholic cathedral in the United States. The Cathedral Basilica of St. Louis is, arguably, the most beautiful. But Baltimore’s Old Cathedral, now the […]

Default Thumbnail Default Thumbnail

perspective

Cartoons and the clash of civilizations

Harvard professor Samuel Huntington’s “class of civilizations” hypothesis — a provocative preview of a twenty-first century in which religiously shaped cultural conflicts define the fault-lines of world politics — created […]

Default Thumbnail Default Thumbnail

perspective

The Alito apologies

With Justice Samuel A. Alito Jr., safely and, I trust, happily, seated on the United States Supreme Court, apologies are in order — as they frequently are after these judicial […]

Default Thumbnail Default Thumbnail

perspective

Benedict XVI and the divine love story

German journalist Peter Seewald once posed a question to Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger: why is the Catholic Church always saying “No?” Cardinal Ratzinger explained that the Church wasn’t fundamentally a matter […]

Default Thumbnail Default Thumbnail

perspective

The Catholic engine of western progress

The standard account of the history of the West from, say, 400-1500 would run something like this: The breakdown of the Roman Empire sent western Europe into the centuries-long civilizational […]

Default Thumbnail Default Thumbnail

perspective

Nothing ordinary about this time

The late Dorothy Sayers, author of the Lord Peter Wimsey detective stories, was a gifted amateur theologian, as the notes she wrote to her translation of Dante’s “Divine Comedy” readily […]

Default Thumbnail Default Thumbnail

perspective

Re-reading modern history

In his Christmas address to the Roman Curia on true and false interpretations of Vatican II, Pope Benedict XVI asked why the Church had had such a difficult time opening […]

Default Thumbnail Default Thumbnail

perspective

Getting the Council right

Every year, just before or after Christmas, the pope meets with senior members of the Roman Curia for a review of the year just past and a preview of the […]

Default Thumbnail Default Thumbnail

perspective

Exaggerated love

Ten years ago, on the evening of December 6, 1995, Pope John Paul II changed my life. In May of that year, I had begun talking with his press spokesman, […]

Default Thumbnail Default Thumbnail

perspective

Fighting the new slavery

I first noticed the new slavery on the outskirts of Rome. There, along the back roads of the periferia, you could see today’s slaves: African women, mostly, with a scattering […]