David Mills is former executive editor of First Things.

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The “Unfairly Demonized” Church

From First Thoughts

A respondent on the English Catholic writer Damian Thompson’s Holy Smoke weblog quotes a useful passage from a recent book that defended Pope Benedict XVI from his detractors: Others have noted that we live in a time of hysteria about paedophilia, a mob psychology that calls to mind the Salem . . . . Continue Reading »

Is Mormonism Christianity?

From First Thoughts

A friend, still cross at the Mormon Glenn Beck for telling Christians to leave their churches, wrote last night asking if Mormonism is a form of Christianity or another religion, and I would be grateful for your thoughts. There are a couple of tests, it seems to me. One is the teaching of the major . . . . Continue Reading »

Father Schall on Hating the Church

From First Thoughts

From Fr. James Schall, one of the good Jesuits: Hatred of the Church? A sample: If Benedict XVI has brought anything to the fore in Catholic theology, it is the nature and necessity of “judgment” of the acts we put into the world. This judgment is what Spe Salvi , among other things, is . . . . Continue Reading »

A Divisive Scandal

From First Thoughts

In today’s “On the Square” article, Another Long Lent , George Weigel asks “where do things stand, two and a half weeks into what at first seemed poised to become a scandal as devastating as the Catholic Church in America’s Long Lent of eight years ago?” And . . . . Continue Reading »

Mystical Readings

From First Thoughts

Of interest to some of you: Biblical Exegesis as Mystical Experience in Judaism and Christianity , a conference being held at Duquesne University in Pittsburgh on April 22nd, as part of the theology department’s colloquium on the reception history of the Bible. I went to last year’s . . . . Continue Reading »

Goldwater and the Do-Gooders

From First Thoughts

While searching the web for something, I came across the Planned Parenthood site and followed a link to a group of theirs called “Republicans for Choice.” It included as a pull-out quote these words from Barry Goldwater: A lot of so-called conservatives today don’t know what the . . . . Continue Reading »

Selling Stem Cells

From First Thoughts

In The Stem Cell Banking Crisis , The Scientist reports that The National Institutes of Health (NIH) has allowed a contract for the dissemination of embryonic stem cell lines approved for US government funding to lapse, shuttering a key stem cell bank, and doubling the price researchers pay for . . . . Continue Reading »

A Joyful Screech Unto the Lord

From First Thoughts

Some people believe sincerity the sole criterion. I’ve just had one of those fraught discussions of church music and you’re always at a disadvantage in trying to argue for some decorum in worship (e.g., people singing close to in tune) when someone responds that Miss Elma Mae Wombat . . . . Continue Reading »