Politics as a (Baptismal) Vocation

From First Thoughts

Harvard Law professor (and longtime First Things contributor and supporter) Mary Ann Glendon offers advice to young Christians inclined to politics in a recent interview with the National Catholic Register . Her main point is one especially worth noting in an election year: that while an obsession . . . . Continue Reading »

A New Tower of London

From First Thoughts

If the first wave of New Atheism was excessively strident, the second wave is shaping up to be unbearably sentimental. Alain De Botton, a Swiss-British television personality who has recently been selling something called “Atheism 2.0” at tech conferences, has begun planning and . . . . Continue Reading »

E.J. Dionne Joins the Chorus

From First Thoughts

. . . of fellow “liberal” Catholics upset with the HHS mandate for its quite un-liberal approach to conscientious objection. In a piece in today’s  Washington Post , he writes: One of Barack Obama’s great attractions as a presidential candidate was his sensitivity to the . . . . Continue Reading »

God, Back in the Dock

From First Thoughts

Decades ago, before the advent of radio and television, public debates and rhetorical competitions were a significant part of American popular culture. Today, what little of the oratorical tradition that remains is often tossed into hasty slogans or cheapened with manufactured outrage. It is in the . . . . Continue Reading »

Signorelli on Coercion

From First Thoughts

In case you missed it last week, Mark Signorelli over at Front Porch Republic has posted further thoughts on the recent Joe Carter-Jerry Salyer debate, though this time the focus is on authority and coercion in legitimate government. It’s not a question of whether to . . . . Continue Reading »

A Plug for the O’Connor Conference

From First Thoughts

If you’ll be in the Washington, DC area this coming weekend and haven’t heard (or managed to register yet), the  13th Annual Cardinal O’Connor Conference on Life  is a truly invigorating experience. The conference, which will be held this upcoming Sunday, January 22, . . . . Continue Reading »

Is the European Union a Catholic Plot?

From Web Exclusives

One of the more fascinating conspiracy theories surrounding the movement toward European integration is the allegation that it’s all a Vatican plot. Of course, spend enough time digging around online and it becomes apparent that the Pope has a hand in just about all significant world events. But this particular accusation, which has cropped up again and again, has a bit more tenacity than the average Internet rumor, and the degree of overlap among the conspiracy peddlers here is rather striking … Continue Reading »

De-politicizing the Ordinariate

From First Thoughts

As discussion over the en masse conversions of Anglican priests and parishes continues to swirl (and the media continues to misrepresent, intentionally or unintentionally, the significance of the influx of married priests), a recent op-ed by Fr. Scott Hurd, the Vicar General of the new Ordinariate . . . . Continue Reading »