Joseph G. Trabbic

Joseph G. Trabbic is Associate Professor of Philosophy at Ave Maria University and is the assistant editor of Thomistica.net, a website for the academic study of St. Thomas Aquinas. Professor Trabbic earned his doctorate from Fordham University in 2008.

recent articles

Political Implications of Religion as a Moral Virtue

A good deal of what the Catholic Church teaches about the state and her relationship to it belongs to the province of philosophy. It belongs to those truths of the faith that are naturally knowable and don’t require revelation. This distinction should be familiar. There are some truths that the Church teaches which we can’t … Read more

The Gods of Atheism

The German Lutheran theologian Paul Tillich famously claimed that “God”—or “god”—is the name for what “concerns man ultimately.” What this means, says Tillich in the first volume of his Systematic Theology, is that “whatever concerns a man ultimately becomes god for him, and, conversely, it means that a man can be concerned ultimately only about … Read more

Vatican II Followed Ottaviani on Church and State

For many people, Alfredo Ottaviani—head of the Holy Office (later the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith) from 1952 to 1968—is the epitome of intransigent, pre-Vatican II Catholicism. He is what the Council had repudiated and moved beyond, or so it is supposed. Indeed, the sentiment expressed by the motto of Cardinal Ottaviani’s coat … Read more

Did Vatican II Endorse Separation of Church and State?

This year, 2015, marks fifty years since the close of the Second Vatican Council. Yet the “battle” for the Council, the battle for its authentic meaning, which began even before the bishops concluded their deliberations in 1965, continues still today. A particular area of controversy is the Council’s teaching on the Church’s relationship to the … Read more

On God’s Responsibility for Atheism

In spite of themselves, atheists can help to remind us of an important truth about God, that is, that he radically transcends the universe. It is God’s very transcendence that makes atheism possible, or at least more likely. If God were an item in the universe open to empirical investigation, presumably, there would be far … Read more

Do All Religions Deserve Respect?

The Obama administration’s war on Catholics will continue into 2014 as many courageous Catholic institutions in the U.S. maintain their resistance to its encroachment on their religious freedom through the H.H.S. mandate. In light of this, we can expect that the public debate about religious freedom will also continue into the new year both inside … Read more

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