Theological Dissent

LGBTQIA: It’s the Taxonomy, Stupid*

“Therefore, since we have this ministry through the mercy shown us, we are not discouraged. Rather, we have renounced shameful, hidden things; not acting deceitfully or falsifying the word of God, but by the open declaration of the truth we commend ourselves to everyone’s conscience in the sight of God.” (2 Cor. 4: 1-2) It [...]

The “Francis Effect” Five Years Out

In his recent book on Pope Francis, Lost Shepherd, Philip Lawler reminds us that the papacy should be a source of Church unity. However, as Lawler points out, under the current pontiff this is not so. He lays out two reasons why: the first is Francis’s autocratic style and the second is the divisive program [...]

Now Professor George Can Hold Fr. Martin Accountable

Having followed from afar the discussion on the meaning and wisdom of Professor Robert George’s new alliance with Fr. James Martin, I came upon Austin Ruse’s article, "James Martin and the Question of the Kiss." I ventured a comment. The comment got out of control (lengthwise). But to my surprise, Crisis Magazine deemed it worthy [...]

How to Properly Respond to the Homosexualist Priest

Let’s be honest: We do not have a “homosexual priest” problem within the Church. Rather, we have a homosexualist priest problem within the Church. Priests who might experience same-sex attraction at least have the possibility of addressing that issue effectively in order to live their priestly vocation as a true icon of the Church’s Bridegroom, [...]

Robert George Says We Should Believe James Martin

It was a shocking photo. There was Jesuit James Martin with his arm around Professor Robert George of Princeton, both of them grinning ear to ear. Professor George published the photo on his Twitter feed and it appeared this beacon of orthodoxy had given his imprimatur to the heterodoxy of James Martin, who has quite [...]

Why Theologians Trained in Catholic Graduate Schools Can’t Find Work

The furor has died down around revelations in late March that a professor of religious studies at the Jesuit College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, Massachusetts, opined in an article that Jesus may have had sexual fantasies about his Father while being crucified. Dr. Tat-Siong Benny Lew, Class of 1956 Professor in New Testament [...]

Is Curranism Finally Dead at the Catholic University of America?

A few weeks ago, the Chronicle of Higher Education got all spun up about whether “Catholic U.’s Chaste Brand” was scaring off prospective students. Some anonymous professors were practically gleeful that the reassertion of authentic Catholicism at CUA, begun under Father David O’Connell and continued robustly under current president John Garvey, was finally shown to [...]

Paradigm Shifts in the Catholic Church?

As one who is in the process of leaving the Southern Baptist church for Roman Catholicism, I say without hesitation and full of love and concern that the Church I fell in love with, the Church in which I found, finally, the full embodiment and expression of truth, goodness, and beauty, is becoming harder to [...]

James Martin S.J. vs James Martin S.J.

Donald Trump might refer to James Martin S.J. as “Slippery Jim.” He is certainly slippery. His latest act of slipperiness is a column he published this week at America wherein he claims to support the teaching of the Church on homosexuality. Keep in mind the Church teaches that the homosexual inclination is “objectively disordered” and [...]

A Vulnerable Church Can Not Afford to Forget Its Enemies

The 1960s were extremely hard on the Catholic Church. The damage done by relativism, contraception, abortion, no-fault divorce (summed up as the Sexual Revolution) and Cultural Marxism has resonated for five decades. When dissident priests such as Fr. Charles Curran advocated for a distorted version of social justice in Catholic colleges and universities, the prophetic [...]

Hünermann’s “Way Forward” is a Dead End

The aged German theologian, Peter Hünermann, is no stranger to ecclesial conflict. His name has arisen once again, now in regard to the recent Vatican media scandal, where Monsignor Dario Edoardo Viganò publicized a fragment of a personal and confidential letter by Benedict XVI to Pope Francis in such a way as to falsely suggest [...]

More Reasons Why “Blessing” Gay Couples Is Scandalous

When the Church “blesses” someone, it usually does so for one of two reasons: to ask God to protect that person from evil, or to confirm that person in the good. Because our spiritual lives are dynamic—at no point are we “holy” enough to rest on our laurels—those two reasons are usually two sides of [...]

An Open Appeal to the Catholic Bishops of the World

After serving five years as a Catholic campus minister in the 1980s, I decided to begin graduate studies in moral theology. This was in the heyday of proportionalism when its founding fathers still held some of the world’s most influential chairs of Catholic moral theology: Richard McCormick at the University of Notre Dame, Josef Fuchs [...]

The Man Who Was “Ante-Pope”

Before his death in 2012, Cardinal Carlo Martini eerily called himself an “ante-pope,” a “precursor and preparer for the Holy Father.” Martini was the leading antagonist to Popes John Paul II and Benedict—a Jesuit famous for groaning that the Church was “200 years behind.” In Night Conversations with Cardinal Martini, he cringed at the “major [...]

A Jesuit Philosopher Who Championed Catholic Orthodoxy

Fun Is Not Enough (2017) is the collection of all 125 columns written by the late Father Francis Canavan, S.J., for the monthly catholic eye from April 1983 until November 2008, a couple of months before his death. The book was edited by Dr. Dawn Eden Goldstein, Assistant Professor of Dogmatic Theology at Holy Apostles College [...]

Germain Grisez’s Defense of Orthodox Faith

Germain Gabriel Grisez, 88, died February 1, 2018. Philosophy and Catholic theology in the United States lost a giant in his passing. After Karol Wojtyła, I probably owe my greatest intellectual debt to Germain Grisez and the late William May and their work in ethics/moral theology. Their work in defense of Catholic teaching on sexual [...]

The Triumph of the People’s Church

Continuing his commitment to a doctrinal vision that prioritizes the lived experiences and insights of ordinary Catholics over the authoritative teachings of the Church, Pope Francis recently affirmed the importance of what he called a “free and responsible” form of Catholic theology—a “creative fidelity”—in the life of the Church. Speaking before a Vatican gathering of 100 [...]

Protestantism, Modernism, Atheism

“The reality of the apostasy of faith in our time rightly and profoundly frightens us,” said Cardinal Burke in honor of Fatima’s centenary. In 1903, Pope St. Pius X declared himself “terrified” by humanity’s self-destructive apostasy from God: “For behold they that go far from Thee shall perish” (Ps. 72:27). How much more “daunting,” said [...]

The Tragedy of Commonplace Church Scandals

Despite curbing my online reading, scarcely a day passes without noting some new scandal caused by a theologian, priest, or bishop. It’s true, of course, that small stories from faraway places achieve an immediacy impossible without the web, but, still, the outrages are all too real. I suspect stories come readily to mind: commemorations of [...]

The Perfidious James Martin SJ

James Martin SJ gallivants around the country telling young men and women that their sexual lifestyles are acceptable to the Church, which is not true; that the Church welcomes them no matter what they may be doing, which is certainly true. James Martin SJ tells them that the teachings of the Church will probably change [...]

Hearing the Still, Small Voice of Orthodoxy

After his confrontation with Ahab and the prophets of Baal on Mt. Carmel, where he called fire down from heaven and killed those prophets, Elijah fled for his life, first to Beersheba then to Horeb (I Kings 18:16-19:18). At Horeb the Lord appeared to Elijah, but before this appearance, the prophet experienced a powerful windstorm, [...]

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