Art & Culture

I was finishing my morning coffee and nothing in particular was occupying my mind. A black-capped chickadee suddenly appeared before my eyes, walking alongside our front yard maple tree. It was busy, no doubt looking for food. At that moment it seemed to be operating with more purpose than I was. This tiny little oviparous [...]

I was finishing my morning coffee and nothing in particular was occupying my mind. A black-capped chickadee suddenly appeared before my eyes, walking alongside our front yard maple tree. It was busy, no doubt looking for food. At that moment it seemed to be operating with more purpose than I was. This tiny little oviparous [...]

Fearing that New Hampshire’s Saint Anselm College is at risk of losing its Catholic identity, and that their voices will be silenced, members of the order of Benedictine monks of Saint Anselm Abbey—the monastic order that founded the college—have filed a lawsuit against Saint Anselm’s Board of Trustees. The lawsuit, filed on November 27th in Hillsborough [...]

In celebrating the centenary of the consecration and dedication to God of the Cathedral of Saints Mary and Joseph, we are in a sense celebrating the 100th anniversary of our cathedral’s “baptism”. At our own baptism we are anointed with sacred chrism and thereby consecrated or set apart for the glory of God and to [...]

During a recent eighth-grade trip to Chicago, chaperones and students of Notre Dame Academy in Toledo walked out of a performance of The Nutcracker after learning that lead characters would be portrayed in a gay marriage. This was a courageous and bold move—a correct application of Pope Francis’s well-publicized encouragement of young people “to make [...]

Three notable Catholic thinkers drew considerable attention in the year of 2019: Saint John Henry Newman for his canonization, Bishop Fulton Sheen for the approval of his beatification, and G.K. Chesterton for his cause for sainthood being stalled. Although Newman is best identified as a theologian, Sheen as a preacher, and Chesterton as a journalist, [...]

There was an underbelly ripple when the news broke that Victoria’s Secret had called off its Christmas season “fashion show,” a prime-time network TV event featuring provocative displays of risqué lingerie. Cancel culture analysts have conjectured at an awareness of the brand’s lack of “body diversity” together with a growing sensitivity to the problem of [...]

To look at our diocese, you might assume it’s on the liberal side. Located in Northern Virginia and established in 1974, most of the newer churches (and there are many of them) are “in the round.” You know the ones—they look like spaceships. Needless to say, these triumphs of modern ecclesial architecture generally exclude altar [...]

This Thanksgiving holiday provided a striking example of political correctness at its worst, aiming at undercutting our nation's history and traditions and engaging in the usual over-embellishing of one of the Left’s favored minority groups and denigration of the majority. In this case, the favored group was American Indians and the denigrated group was, of [...]

Peter Collier, R.I.P.

There are some occasions when the editorial “we” is almost viscerally inadequate. Writing about my friend Peter Collier—the prolific biographer and novelist, literary impresario, and tireless cultural warrior—is one such. Although he made it a full decade beyond the biblically sanctioned allotment of three score and ten, the announcement early last month that Peter had [...]

Like a bird, Blessed Franz Jägerstätter built his nest high—up on the slopes of the Austrian mountains in the village of St. Radegund. Franz and his wife Franziska were living in an edenic alpine village amid all that is green and fresh. There, they quietly raised their three daughters, worked the fields, and loved each [...]

Published seventy years ago, in 1949, Nineteen Eighty-Four is a modern classic. As Americans in the Age of Oligarchy acquiesce to a mutable truth—a gospel according to Google—George Orwell’s dystopian nightmare is creeping into the American dream. Politicians openly lie. “Fake news” riddles the media. Moral relativism commonly and craftily validates immorality. It is all [...]

Thirty-six years ago a small slim book crossed my desk at the offices of National Review in Manhattan. Its title was The Restitution of Man: C.S. Lewis and the Case Against Scientism; its author, Michael D. Aeschliman. I slipped it into my briefcase and began reading it over a martini on the flight back to Wyoming. At home, I finished [...]

It is a rare pleasure to be able to write in full-throated commendation of a signal event at an important academic institution. Last month, Hillsdale College marked its 175th anniversary by dedicating Christ Chapel, a magnificent new building designed by the distinguished ecclesiastical architect Duncan Stroik, a professor of architecture at Notre Dame. The chastely [...]

“Having trivialized the past by equating it with outmoded . . . fashions and attitudes, people today resent anyone who draws on the past in serious discussions of contemporary conditions or attempts to use the past as a standard by which to judge the present... A denial of the past, superficially progressive and optimistic, proves [...]

One of the most encouraging developments in the Church in recent years has been the emergence of good, solid prelates from Africa. One thinks of Cardinal Arinze, whom many had thought might become the first African pope, and now there is the indomitable Robert Cardinal Sarah, whose forthright and courageous stance against much of the [...]

What makes worship in the Catholic Church of 2019 different from everything else one experiences during the week—a place of true spiritual, intellectual, and emotional respite? We genuflect and kneel, and foster a spirit of quiet reverence because Jesus is truly present in the tabernacle and on the altar. External factors can bolster this catechesis: [...]

Certainly within Catholic circles, a film about the latest, most significant spiritual devotion—the Divine Mercy image and Chaplet—has been much anticipated, and if the nearly-full theatre where I viewed the film is any indication, its premier showing was well attended in a limited theatrical release. Due to popular demand, the film is scheduled for an [...]

Editor’s note: this article originally appeared in the April 2002 print edition of Crisis. It has been edited for brevity. Misconceptions about the Crusades are all too common. The Crusades are generally portrayed as a series of holy wars against Islam led by power-mad popes and fought by religious fanatics. They are supposed to have been the [...]

A few decades ago, I had lunch with Daniel Carroll in Howard County, Maryland, during which he used a pop-up toaster in his grand dining room, which was hung with ancestral portraits. There were many such portraits, for Dan was a direct descendant of the only Catholic signer of the Declaration of Independence, Charles Carroll [...]

Several Sundays ago, our parish priest devoted his sermon to the subject of evil, which he argued has reached historic levels in the world today. A couple of weeks later, my local paper, The Laramie Boomerang, printed a front-page story about the forthcoming weeklong series of events preceding Hallowe’en (nowadays “Halloween” or “Holloween”) called “Scaramie,” [...]

Have you ever dared to go inside one of those Halloween outlets that crop up a month before October 31? Besides high-priced trash, these shops offer an insight into what Dante might have conceived for our times in his Inferno, portraying the horrors and monstrosities that are housed in the heart of our society with [...]

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