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A cardinal, a Prince of the Church, remains locked up in a small cell, separated from all, locked in, and without access to the sacraments. No, this is not coronavirus, and this is not Italy. In many ways it is a metaphor—we might even be forgiven for thinking it a paragraph from Lord of the [...]

We are living in very confused and confusing times. The pestilence is upon us and many of us find ourselves in lockdown, under house arrest, and, if we live alone, in solitary confinement. Worse, at least for Catholics, is the fact that we have been locked out of our churches and exiled from the sacraments. [...]

Governor Jay Inslee of Washington State followed in the steps of New York and California to issue a statewide stay-at-home order, effective March 24, for a period of two weeks. In the midst of a complete shutdown of economic and social life and the rising number of cases and deaths in the state of Washington, Catholics [...]

England declared war on Germany on September 3, 1939, just two days after the Nazis invaded Poland. It became a live question, with the Michaelmas term about to begin, whether universities in England should continue to carry out their essential task of learning. For at universities (and any educational institution) students learn (presumably!), and they [...]

Christendom has seen a plague or two in its day. On more than one occasion a worse pestilence than that which we now face has plunged the West into chaos, or brought it to a grinding halt. In every extraordinary time, however, the Church has remained semper idem and has remained, at the very least, [...]

In early March, several players on the World Series championship team the Washington Nationals—Ryan Zimmerman, Trea Turner, Kurt Suzuki, Patrick Corbin, and Daniel Hudson—played golf with President Trump at his private West Palm Beach resort after a morning workout at the team’s spring training facility. Unsurprisingly, the Nats players were pilloried by the President’s many [...]

There are only two kinds of people who seem to relish a national emergency: busybodies and buzzkills. Both take it as their life’s work to prove they know better than the poor hayseed who lives next door. In the middle of March, Catholic news outlets began to report an extraordinary coincidence: not only is there [...]

There’s nothing like a catastrophe to show us what it is that we worship. The past few weeks have further proven that many Americans believe they can buy safety—witness the shocking stripping of basic goods from grocery stores at a level far beyond what people actually need. And in just the past few days, as [...]

Christians are in uncharted political territory. Once a formidable force in our politics, the Religious Right is now effectively irrelevant, undermined as much by its own hypocrisy and short-sightedness as by growing secularism. Until recently, most conservative Christians have subscribed to a philosophy known as fusionism: a combination of free-market economics, social traditionalism, and foreign-policy [...]

To those who think that legal abortion means safe abortion, think again. The Supreme Court is currently contemplating important questions surrounding a Louisiana state law requiring hospital admitting privileges for abortionists. Among the amicus briefs submitted to the Court in support of the law are several that outline in compelling detail the health and safety deficiencies of [...]

This face, for centuries a memory, Non est species, neque decor, Expressionless, expresses God: it goes Past castled Sion. She knows what God knows, Not Calvary’s Cross nor crib at Bethlehem Now, and the world shall come to Walsingham. Frederick Wilhelmsen called Juan Donoso Cortés the Augustine of the nineteenth century: the chronicler of civilization’s [...]

Almost 700 years ago, King Richard II dedicated England as the “Dowry of Mary.” On March 29, 2020, England will be rededicated to Mary. In light of this historic event, numerous articles have been published of late on the topic. These articles address what the rededication is and why it matters to English Catholics. But [...]

As the coronavirus spreads across the globe and medical professionals struggle to contain it, there is one thing that the rest of us can do besides pray and use hand sanitizer: drink more. Dr. Todor Kantardzhiev, director of Bulgaria’s Centre for Infectious and Parasitic Diseases, reportedly asserted that regular drinkers of hard liquor are at [...]

In classic Russian fiction the writer often conceals the exact location and even the name of a character. In any story by Chekov or Dostoyevsky, you run across memes like this: It so happened last autumn that an officer on leave, Captain N., missed his footing while stepping off the train in the town of [...]

On this solemnity which celebrates the high-water point in the history of salvation, permit me to explore with you three Latin expressions. The first is, verbum caro factum est: “The Word became flesh.” We find this line, of course, in the Prologue to St. John’s Gospel, and the Epistle to the Hebrews tells us that [...]

A mediator is someone who is situated between two parties and seeks to bring them into accord. The mediator does have a particular position of his own but operates in a completely unselfish manner. A medium, in the sense of a psychic, refers to one who establishes contact with the supernatural world. All three senses [...]

Back when I was a Protestant, one of the Catholic Church’s great draws to me was its teaching that it’s actually a sin to skip formal, collective worship on Sunday. In the Episcopal Church, we were very much into the idea that you could honor the Sabbath “in your own way,” and—well, there’s only one [...]

In shutting the world in, coronavirus has brought out the viral quality of fear. Men tend to panic when life changes overnight and moves beyond their control. Pandemonium is never as distant as a complacent, comfortable people imagine. Civilized society is not immune from collapse just because it is civilized. Ingenuity leads to dependency, and [...]

Professor Henry Kamen of Oxford was one of the fiercest detractors of the Supreme Sacred Congregation of the Roman and Universal Inquisition (currently known as the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith). Then Pope John Paul II allowed him into the Secret Vatican Archives which led to the publication of The Spanish Inquisition: A [...]

The nation has been treated to an uncanny spectacle over the past few weeks. Schools and businesses closed in the face of the Wuhan flu, and public health officials urged all Americans to stay home and  practice “social distancing” to slow the spread of the disease. But as anxious families braved supermarket lines to stock [...]

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