Stephen Fitzpatrick

Stephen Fitzpatrick received a B.A. in the Liberal Arts from Thomas Aquinas College and an M.A. in Theology from the University of Scranton. He is the Head of School at Cardinal Newman Academy in Richmond, VA.

recent articles

Placing Politics in a Larger Spiritual Context

It behooves a citizen of a free and democratic society to exercise his right to vote. It is a solemn and serious responsibility at all times but perhaps especially these days when the abortion issue so strongly divides our two major political parties. I distinctly remember the first time I voted in a federal election … Read more

Parker’s Back: Not Just Another Tattoo

Many civilized readers just don’t know what to do with Flannery O’Connor—and for good reason. If you mashed together the works of Saint Thomas Aquinas and Quentin Tarantino, I think you would get something very like a Flannery O’Connor story, full of theological brilliance and significance, but also earthy, violent, aggressive, and even ugly. O’Connor’s … Read more

The Dilemma of Genre in Xenophon’s The Persian Expedition

It is always good to get your bearings—to take stock of where you are and what you are doing, to orient yourself (from the Latin for ‘East’). While this principle is beneficial to life on a grand scale, it can also be applied to the civilized reader whenever he takes up a new book. The … Read more

The Problem of Evil in Graham Greene’s The Hint of an Explanation

“Sufficient for the day is the evil thereof.”  ∼Matthew 6:34 Evil is an ever-present reality of our lives, but it is one with which we have difficulty reconciling ourselves. Why does evil happen to good people, or for that matter, why does evil happen at all? The problem of evil in the world—closely related to … Read more

C.S. Lewis’s The Magician’s Nephew

For those who are concerned with important books, The Magician’s Nephew should be a concern. It is important because in reading this book, the young reader should experience that particular delight when a book surprises you with the completely unexpected. And the surprise at the end of The Magician’s Nephew is of the first order. … Read more

Lessons from Lewis: On C.S. Lewis’ The Silver Chair

When I first read and re-read the seven Narnia books, The Silver Chair was easily my favorite. Many years later, this is still the case, and for several reasons. In it we find the Marsh-wiggle Puddleglum, who (rivaled only by Repicheep the mouse) is perhaps the most memorable character in the entire series. It has … Read more

The Impulse of Love: The Story of the Other Wise Man by Henry van Dyke

Gold, Frankincense, and Myrrh. Kasper, Melchior, and Balthazar. These three gifts and names are familiar enough. We see images of the three kings who visited Jesus in almost every nativity scene, even if Biblically inaccurate. It is a marvelous and beautiful scene to contemplate: Jesus honored as the King He is for the first time; … Read more

Lessons from Lewis: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe

A mark of excellent children’s literature is that it appeals to adults. My children insist that I read to them on a daily basis and I insist on reading them books that I too enjoy. Fortunately, it is not very difficult to find such books: ones that I genuinely enjoy reading and that they genuinely … Read more

Hard Times by Charles Dickens

“Now what I want is, Facts. Teach these boys and girls nothing but Facts. Facts alone are wanted in life. Plant nothing else and root out everything else. You can only form the minds of reasoning animals upon Facts: nothing else will ever be of any service to them.” With this dogmatic and militaristic monologue … Read more

Les Miserables by Victor Hugo

On June 5, 1832, a young Victor Hugo unwittingly found himself in the crossfire between young revolutionary republicans and the French National Guard. He took shelter in a doorway and escaped unharmed but the experience must have made a lasting impression upon him. Thirty years later Hugo used the small and predictably brief uprising against … Read more

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