Rod Dreher

Head in Sand

The Sexual Revolution and the Do-Nothing Church

“Abandonment of Christian sexual morality is the core of the Church’s self-secularization.”  ∼ Gabriele Kuby, The Global Sexual Revolution From time to time, the church finds itself with egg on its face because of its failure to speak out in the face of grievous injustices. The Nazi episode, the Civil Rights movement in the United [...]

Good Friday Reveals the True Revolutionary on Calvary

Every year, we are fortunate to hear two accounts in church of the Passion during Holy Week—the first one on Palm Sunday and the second one on Good Friday. The latter account is always from Saint John’s Gospel. On Palm Sunday, we rotate among the Synoptic Gospels according to Cycles A, B, and C. This [...]

Christians Who Shill for the Secular Left

Posted outside my office door is an old cartoon. A bearded professor wearing sandals and carrying a backpack leads a group of wide-eyed undergrads into a land labeled “utopia.” As they merrily march along, they pass an exodus of escaping humanity, fleeing an ash-strewn landscape amid scattered bodies and smoldering ruins. “Isn’t this great?” the [...]

The Escriva Option: An Alternative to St. Benedict

Nostalgia lurks always in the near corners of the human imagination. It often takes very little to bring it to life; a sunny day, the wind blowing the grass, a taste of food, a smell, a picture. They all bring us back to sweet and sweeter times, childhood, courting, weddings, childbirth. These are all nostalgic [...]

The “Benedict Option” and the Barbarian Challenge

Scratch the soul of many a conservative and beneath you will find a villager. Something is there that attracts these Americans to more natural and simpler lifestyles. Perhaps it is because organic and authentic things appear restful and reassuring in a world of uncertainties and anxieties. However, what makes the organic option particularly attractive to [...]

Imagining a Family Friendly Political Order

Like boiling frogs, we may be forgiven for failing to notice an all pervasive atmospheric change; forgiven but not spared. Whether we can look it in the eye or not, we have entered the era Pope Benedict XVI described as the mustard seed church. Our stature and influence are gone and the world has become [...]

The Benedict Option: What Does It Really Mean?

 “Seeking his workman in a multitude of people, the Lord calls out to him and lifts his voice again: ‘Is there anyone here who yearns for life and desires to see good days?’” (Prologue of the Rule of St. Benedict, quoting Psalm 34:14-15). The Benedict Option—what does it really mean? In my mind, it is [...]

The Benedict Option and the Lay Vocation

“[Monasteries] kept the world’s diary, faced the plagues of all flesh, taught the first technical arts, preserved the pagan literature, and above all, by a perpetual patchwork of charity, kept the poor from the most distant sight of their modern despair.” – G.K. Chesterton The Benedict Option is, like so many saintly practices, both a [...]

There and Back Again

The mythologist Joseph Campbell discerned that the pattern of the hero’s quest is for the classic hero to be discontented in his ordinary world, hear the call of adventure, embark on a great quest and then return to the ordinary world bearing a great gift for the salvation and redemption of the ordinary folks left [...]

Great Gatsby’s Facebook Mansion

The Great Gatsby (the book; I haven’t seen the movie yet) describes a particular kind of life that used to be the sole property of well-heeled WASPs. They were the privileged ones who came from all parts of the country to convene on The East—New York, Boston, New Haven. They could afford all the new [...]

Detachment Parenting: Learning to Let Go

I like to imagine the wind that was blowing on that sparkling fall day, tousling my mom's strawberry-blonde hair. In the photograph, she's holding my older brother Jason, who was around 3 at the time. You can see he has his mother's eyes -- almond-shaped, dark brown eyes that are smiling. My mom's arms draw [...]

Christianity Has Become Too Worldly

IC readers likely will agree with the above statement. But hey, the argument is gaining traction, or it is if Luke Timothy Johnson , Ross Douthat , and Rod Dreher are an indication. Over at my blog at True Slant, I argue that Christianity's materialistic turn has had positive and negative effects: To be fair, [...]

‘Return to me with your whole heart…’

Crunchy Con blogger Rod Dreher was crushed last week when his 41-year-old sister Ruthie was diagnosed with an aggressive form of cancer. While the news has been devastating to his family, it has also drawn them closer in love, prompting Rod to wonder why, when life is so fragile, we insist on holding on to [...]

The Narnia Code

Erin Manning has some interesting reflections over at Rod Dreher's blog on Christmas and "the struggle to live as a serious Christian in modern America." Terry Mattingly's review of the book Tinsel reminded her that, annual stories about the "War on Christmas" aside, the real battle against Christmas is waged within each of us: What [...]

The war on Christmas is in every human heart

Erin Manning has some interesting reflections over at Rod Dreher's blog on Christmas and "the struggle to live as a serious Christian in modern America." Terry Mattingly's review of the book Tinsel reminded her that, annual stories about the "War on Christmas" aside, the real battle against Christmas is waged within each of us: What [...]

Docility

  Recently, Rod Dreher posed a question about what a Catholic is to do when he thinks a magisterial authority has made some error of fact concerning, say, science, politics, or economics. Dreher's post concerns the question of whether some bishops are mistaken to think morning-after pills are abortifacient, but it could just as easily pertain [...]

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