09/01/1988

Some critics have said of the U.S. Catholic bishops' pastoral letters on nuclear weapons and on the U.S. economy that they conform too closely to reigning ideologies; e.g., to the reigning ideologies at the New York Times. Everyone these days seems to want to be in opposition, playing David to Goliath. To be "adversarial" to [...]

Some critics have said of the U.S. Catholic bishops' pastoral letters on nuclear weapons and on the U.S. economy that they conform too closely to reigning ideologies; e.g., to the reigning ideologies at the New York Times. Everyone these days seems to want to be in opposition, playing David to Goliath. To be "adversarial" to [...]

The semi-annual meeting of the U.S. Catholic bishops in Collegeville, Minnesota, June 24 to 27, was either a turning point in the history of the postconciliar Church in this country, or a fluke. On every controverted question, the more orthodox or conservative position prevailed. Some routine items were on the agenda, including minor revisions in [...]

"I'm not afraid of death. I am afraid of murder." —Henry Caul in The Conversation When I walked into Gesu Church, an old man was quietly reciting his Rosary before the Blessed Sacrament. The church was dark. Up near the sanctuary I could see the soft red flickering of the vigil lights giving off that [...]

Somewhere in a magazine (could it have been Crisis?) I read a piece by a young man who used to be a devout Catholic. He left the Church, however, because he found himself becoming "increasingly angry about what [he] heard coming from the pulpit." What he heard was too many sermons about "the homeless, nuclear [...]

Prophecy is a tricky business. If a prophet predicts that something will happen and it does not, the prophet is discredited. But what if he predicts truly? Doesn't the truth of his prediction give credence to the prophet's insight, authority, reasoning—to whatever is the source of his ability to prophesy? Would we not be inclined [...]

Two days before being inducted as one of the Vatican's 25 newly appointed cardinals, on June 26, the eminent theologian Hans Urs von Balthasar died. Pope John Paul II aptly commented that Balthasar had been called by God to a more exalted state. Von Balthasar was part of an incredible display of Catholic intellectual and [...]

Editors' Note: The following letter from Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, which raises questions about the propriety and moral soundness of the National Conference of Catholic Bishops' controversial publication, "The Many Faces of AIDS," was sent to Archbishop John May, President of the NCCB, for distribution to the U.S. bishops prior to their meeting in June at [...]

Not too long ago, I received a letter from my friend Robert Reilly, who had recently switched from the U.S. Consulate in Berne to the Intercollegiate Studies Institute in Bryn Mawr. Thanks to Anne Burleigh, I had been on a binge of reading Jane Austen, which I had mentioned to Reilly. "I am glad to [...]

In a back corner of our little parish church there stands a small table bearing a plain white tablet. Atop the page someone has written "Prayer Intentions." Then follows a list of anonymous notations in a variety of hands: "that my son may be reconciled with his wife and children"; "that our daughter may get [...]

The greatest pagan philosopher, Aristotle, thought that it was impossible to love one's enemies or to love a wicked man. On this last point he is frank and explicit: it is impossible to love what isn't loveable; a wicked man is not loveable; so it's not possible to love him. We might think that this [...]

If you or I had been in charge of providential planning for the effort to counter distorted versions of Vatican II and the Magisterium generally, it is doubtful that we would have cast a Yugoslav nun working in the streets of Calcutta or a cloistered Franciscan from Canton, Ohio in starring rolls. Yet it is [...]

On Screen: Big

One of the nicest things about Big is that it isn't. This comic fantasy, unlike so many recent efforts in this genre (Explorers, Weird Science, Gremlins), is a modest movie. It doesn't punch its audiences with special effects, outlandish settings, contraptions, hairbreadth escapes, or various monsters from outer space or underground. Instead, offers the one [...]

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