Modern Liberty a Cruel Parody of Christian Freedom

As Easter comes ever closer the importance of the incarnation, death, and resurrection of Christ should be magnified for every Christian. Christians should not forget the underlying message of the Easter story—the freedom won in Christ’s death and resurrection. For this is one of two major competing stories in modernity, and one that modernity would [...]

Reducing Religion to Politics

What do political expressions like Right and Left have to do with religion? Nothing, some people say. The terms are misleading enough in politics, and carrying them over to religion stretches them beyond reason. Politics and religion are complex, and each has its own concerns, methods, and issues. So why use expressions like “right-wing” and [...]

Islam in the Public Square

Secularists like to advise Christians that, for the sake of social harmony, they ought to keep their religion to themselves. Religion, they argue, is a private affair between an individual and his designated deity, and ought not to be dragged into the public square. Moreover, they helpfully add, it’s an imposition on others to confront [...]

Advent a Casualty in the “War on Christmas”

Just in time for Christmas 2017, the Pew Research Center released the results of a survey that found that 56 percent of Americans believe that the "religious parts of Christmas" are emphasized less in the United States today than they were in the past. It's hard to argue otherwise: Even many of those who have [...]

Revisiting the War on Christmas

Like Leslie Nielsen’s famous advice as the building explodes behind him—“OK, move on, nothing to see here, please disperse”—so The New York Times assures us that there’s nothing to the war on Christmas except, perhaps, Republican partisanship. “From the beginning, the War on Christmas was a homegrown Fox News cause, introduced by the so-named 2005 [...]

Poland Keeps the Lord’s Day Holy

After Polish Catholics lined the country’s 2,000-mile border to pray the “Rosary to the Borders,” Poland made another headline last week: Poland’s Sejm (lower house of Poland’s parliament) voted last week to phase out shopping on Sundays by 2020. The idea behind the bill is to allow Poles to spend more time with their families [...]

A Medieval Remedy for Modernity’s Ills

Show me a Catholic not troubled by the circumstances of these days, and I will show you a Catholic asleep. Society’s woes rock his soul, but the historic perils facing Holy Church do so even more. Not only from outside her walls, but more frighteningly, from within. How are we to keep our spirits from [...]

One Day Islamists Will Get Gaudi’s Cathedral

It is one of the most remarkable churches in all the world, in all of human history. Begun in 1892 and not expected to be finished until 2030, La Sagrada Familia is Antonio Gaudi’s masterpiece. It is odd and wonderful to behold, its barrel-shaped spires springing up all around, its soaring interior arches offering glory [...]

Evangelizing the Alt-Right

I first came into contact with Alt-Right circles in 2012—long before anyone (least of all me) knew or cared who they were. As now, they were predominantly well-educated, middle-class Millennials. And I studied them closely, because I sensed they were going to grow much, much larger. It was inevitable. Why? Because they’re cut from the [...]

Our Secular World Needs Christian Personhood

“Gloria Dei est vivens homo.”  ∼ St. Irenaeus Saint Irenaeus (130-202) wrote that the glory of God is revealed in living human beings; this idea expresses one of the most central ideas of the primitive Church and the period of the Fathers, that of deification or theosis (becoming god-like). This constant theme within the first Christian millennium [...]

To Whom Do Democrats Pray?

On June 14, 2017, James Hodgkinson, a staunch Bernie Sanders supporter and volunteer for the Sanders presidential campaign, opened fire at a Republican baseball practice in Virginia for an annual congressional charity baseball game. Hodgkinson had a list of Republican lawmakers in his front pocket, and was apparently attempting to kill as many Republicans as [...]

When Secular Elites Demand Religious Tests for Public Office

One piece of news in the wake of the surprise election results in the United Kingdom was the announcement that Tim Farron would resign as leader of the Liberal Democrat Party, in large part because of the tension he felt between his party’s platform and his Christian faith. “To be a political leader—especially of a [...]

Why the Odds Favor Islam

On May 22, an Islamic suicide bomber detonated himself outside a pop concert in Manchester, England, killing and wounding dozens, many of them young children. The terrorist was a 22-year-old named Salman Abedi. A few days after the attack, I was reading an article about the mosque he attended—the Didsbury Mosque. “That’s funny,” I thought [...]

Good News For Cranky Catholics in a Post-Christian Age

Whereas T.S. Eliot wrote that “April is the cruelest month” in The Waste Land (a fact empirically verified for me by living in Alaska for 9 years), I’ve found that, at least in the decade of the 2000s, October sometimes became my crankiest. 2004 and 2008 come to mind. Both involved a significant pre-election immersion [...]

The Catholic Answer to the Abuse of Power

The accumulation and exercise of power is on the rise in public life. The secular culture is obsessed with power, especially the universities and those institutions most directly influenced by them, including the media, even local government, and, sadly, service-oriented non-profit organizations. Corporations are also exercising power in new and frightening ways. Power is the [...]

Who Will Endure the Coming Persecution?

During the days when David was king (1010-970 BC), the leaders of the tribe of Issachar were lauded because they “were endowed with an understanding of the times and … knew what Israel had to do…” (I Chron. 13:33). Jesus rebuked the crowds for not understanding their present age: they knew how to predict the [...]

A Torah Scholar Helps Explain the Age Of Foolishness

Maybe it takes a Torah scholar and religious Jew to help us understand the roots of the inverted values that animate Western civilization. For over ten years, author and radio talk show host Dennis Prager taught the first five books of the Bible verse-by-verse at the American Jewish University in Los Angeles. According to Prager [...]

The Godlessness of Cultural Uniformity

A story in Florence, Italy recently caught the attention of many around the world. It was big news when public outcry caused Florentine city officials to backtrack from an agreement to let a McDonald’s open in the historic Piazza del Duomo, not far from Florence’s historic fifteenth-century cathedral. It would harm the identity of the [...]

Apostasy in England and Europe

There once was an excellent Jesuit boarding school in England by the name of Beaumont, which began admitting boys back in the mid 1800s. Soon after opening its doors, it decided to challenge a neighboring school to a game of soccer. And so the headmaster sent his counterpart at nearby Eton a letter suggesting a [...]

Apostasy: The West’s Only Hope?

Edward Gibbon would be amused. Charles the Hammer would be disgusted. Augustine of Canterbury would be aghast. London, one of the great capitals of Christendom, now has a Muslim mayor. In 732, Charles Martel blocked the spread of Islam into Gaul and the heart of Europe at the Battle of Tours. In those days, Western [...]

Should the Solemnity of the Ascension Be Moved?

Thursday, May 14 was the Solemnity of the Ascension in the ecclesiastical provinces of Boston, Hartford, Newark, New York, Omaha, and Philadelphia. In the rest of the United States, the Solemnity of the Ascension was marked on Sunday, May 17, which suppressed the Seventh Sunday of Easter. Church discipline in the United States allows for [...]