G.K. Chesterton

Revenge of the Neo-Jacobins

Some mock America’s statue-smashers as ignoramuses who do not know what they are doing or why. But there are very good reasons why we see monuments cast down all over the West, including the United States. Let’s not wave this off as mindless stupidity. The radical rule is that the more you destroy, the more [...]

Humor and the Hippopotamus

          I saw the ’potamus take wing Ascending from the damp savannas, And quiring angels round him sing The praise of God, in loud hosannas.  Blood of the Lamb shall wash him clean And him shall heavenly arms enfold, Among the saints he shall be seen Performing on a harp of gold. — T.S. Eliot [...]

Pondering the Punchline

What do G.K. Chesterton, Joe Rogan, and Saint John Paul II have in common? G.K. Chesterton thought deeply about the world. He wrote on everything under the sun, sprinkling his interesting vocabulary and witty aphorisms throughout his works. Saint John Paul II was a formidable man, hardened by wars and sensitive to the major philosophical [...]

Will Chesterton’s Home Be Demolished?

Overroads is marked down for demolition. Last year, the owners of the former home of G.K. Chesterton and his wife, Frances, put the house on the market with an asking price of £1.9 million pounds (about $2.4 million dollars). They found no buyers, and so turned to property developers. These, in turn, applied to the [...]

Christmas in a Cage

I had heard that this store went “all out” at Christmas, but I was still taken aback. Ten-foot-tall nutcrackers, sprawling miniature villages, plush snow unicorns, plastic pine trees encrusted with glitter and glass, jingle bell muzak at high volume, seasonally garish sweaters, gigantic drummer boys para-pum-pum-pumming, a marshmallow army of leering lawn inflatables, and a [...]

GKC Was No Anti-Semite

Last summer, the Bishop of Northampton rebuffed the cause for canonization of G.K. Chesterton, offering as one of three impediments that “the issue of anti-Semitism is a real obstacle particularly at this time in the United Kingdom.” W.H. Auden fifty years ago and Adam Gopnik in the last decade both brutally tarred Chesterton with anti-Semitism—a [...]

We Are All Ahmarists Now, Part II

[This is part two of Michael Warren Davis's two-part reflection on the Ahmari-French debate on the future of Christian conservatism. Read the first part here.] The second major point of contention between Sohrab Ahmari and David French is on the question of civility. To again quote from Mr. Ahmari’s first shot across the Frenchists’ bow: [...]

The world needs St. Gilbert Keith Chesterton

First of all, Chesterton was not anti-Semitic, and those who say so are either ignorant or malicious. I am only too happy to shed light on their ignorance or expose their malice. But let’s not get waylaid with that nonsense. Let’s talk about what is truly true and truly important. Let's talk about why the [...]

Converts Who Followed Chesterton Across the Tiber

Many religious roads lead a convert to Rome, and a frequent guidebook is something written by G.K. Chesterton: often Orthodoxy. In his new collection of convert stories, My Name is Lazarus, Dale Ahlquist, the world’s greatest living Chesterton promoter, claims that he can name a couple of thousand who followed the fat journalist across the [...]

A Remedy for the Abuse of Language

The line between medicine and poison is a fine one. The same drug can cure when administered by an expert and harm, if not kill, when misapplied. Some drugs always cause harm, but are consumed for some apparent benefit; they, too, are pseudo-medicinal. This is true for souls as much as it is for bodies. [...]

In Defense of Literature

Recently I was mildly rebuked by a reader for something I wrote on The Lord of the Rings wherein I reflected on the valuable lessons from this work, as well as the life and letters of J.R.R. Tolkien, and their applications to the current crisis being faced by Catholics. “Sorry, we don’t have the luxury [...]

All Things Considered (x3)

National Public Radio’s afternoon news program, “All Things Considered,” is about big stuff and small stuff, world-shaking events and minute ephemera. In this sense, it does approximate “all things,” indeed, and I’ve been a devoted fan since Terry, my college roomie, clued me in nearly 40 years ago. “What is this anyway?” I asked him [...]

Last Crusade Calling Lost Christendom to War! “Lepanto” by G.K. Chesterton

On Sunday, October 7th, in the year of Our Lord 1571, an outnumbered, fragile coalition of small Christian states and one small part of a big Christian state defeated an empire at sea just off the coast of Greece. All of Europe rejoiced at the time, even the Christian states that refused help. Now, among the [...]

The Last Defender of Reason and the Human Body

G.K. Chesterton said, at the end of his fine biography The Dumb Ox, that Thomas Aquinas ought to be called “Saint Thomas of the Creation.” That is because Thomas defended the integrity, the beauty, the intelligibility, and the real and not notional existence of things, good old created things, fire and flood, flowers and grass, birds [...]

Spiritual Pride and Honest Humility in G.K. Chesterton’s “The Hammer of God”

Of the many symptoms and manifestations of pride—disobedience, stubbornness, willfulness, boastfulness, vanity, presumption, arrogance—spiritual pride does not express itself in such visible, noticeable ways as these other attributes. In Chesterton’s short story “The Hammer of God” the Reverend Wilfred Bohun enjoys the reputation of a holy Anglican priest who lives an austere life of self-denial [...]

The Blood-Soaked Seas of Reason: Robert Louis Stevenson and Chesterton as Literary Critics

The craft of the painter or the sculptor, G.K. Chesterton would contend, can reveal, like a law, the rich complexity of reality: this law of fine art (when done finely) curbs man’s passion to control and dominate. It is a law which encourages man’s desire for standing in wonder for the Truth and its vastness. [...]

The Value of Unexpected Friendships

America has weathered the most divisive presidential election in recent memory, and the first round of family gatherings since then, with many Thanksgiving meals expected to have been free-for-all food fights, with turkey drumsticks flying, no doubt. But we are getting along in the new reality, for the most part, and most friendships and family [...]

Chestertonian Common Sense on “Uncommon” Adultery

In The Superstition of Divorce, G.K. Chesterton notes the absurdities of transfiguring marriage into an “ideal,” a “counsel of perfection” akin to monastic life. “A man might be reverently pointed out in the street as a sort of saint, merely because he was married,” Chesterton says. “A man might wear a medal for monogamy; or [...]

Dealing Life: A Review of Manalive by G.K. Chesterton

“What does 'literature' have to do with saving one’s soul?” This question surely has a long and distinguished lineage, all the way back to the Church Father Tertullian, who asked a similar question about the value of pagan philosophy for Christian study: “What does Athens have to do with Jerusalem?” Far from being an obstacle to [...]

Catholics, Chesterton and Concealed Carry

One of GK Chesterton’s central themes was the necessity of gratitude. Here’s a characteristic passage. All my mental doors open outwards into a world I have not made. My last door of liberty opens upon a world of sun and solid things, of objective adventures. The post in the garden; the thing I neither create [...]

The Body Beautiful and the Assumption of Mary

The age of the "body beautiful" will now become the age of the Assumption.  ∼ Ven. Fulton Sheen “I am empowered by my body,” Kim Kardashian declared back on International Women’s Day, voicing triumph in an infamous nude selfie. In a society that worships the brazen sensuality of the body beautiful while eviscerating any link between [...]

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