The One Really Interesting Story

The Book of Acts opens with two events of great salvation-historical importance: the going up of Jesus from earth into heaven (the Ascension), and the coming down of the Holy Spirit upon the disciples (Pentecost). Both events are commemorated by Christians in this season of the year. Jesus’s resurrection from the dead inaugurated God’s new beginning, which the New Testament calls “the last days.” . . . . Continue Reading »

Euphemisms for Killing

Words matter. The terminology we employ not only reflects our values but helps to define them. Language is particularly important in bioethical debates, in which dehumanizing verbiage can distance us from our fellow human beings.When embryonic stem-cell research was in the news, we were told . . . . Continue Reading »

The Other Footnote in Amoris Laetitia

Pope Francis’s recent Apostolic Exhortation Amoris Laetitia is, for the most part, a beautiful presentation of Catholic teaching on marriage and the family. But its eighth chapter strikes many readers as problematic. This chapter attempts to identify the patterns of reasoning by which a prudent . . . . Continue Reading »

Intolerance and Evangelization

Cardinal Robert Sarah is one of the adornments of the Catholic Church, although it’s very unlikely that this man of faith, humor, intelligence, and profound humility would appreciate my putting it that way. His 2015 book, God or Nothing, is selling all over the world, currently available in twelve . . . . Continue Reading »

Where the Icons Aren't Yet Dry

This monk is not letting us go without a sermon, but he’s earned it. We—a group of scholars brought together for a conference in Romania celebrating the legacy of the historian Peter Brown—have been treated well. We are standing in the Neamț monastery library, where the Philokalia, that . . . . Continue Reading »

The True History of Women Deacons

When Pope Francis announced his willingness to appoint a commission to study whether women can serve as deacons in the Catholic Church, my first thought was: Here we go!And sure enough, FutureChurch, the liberal Catholic organization that has subtly pushed for the ordination of women to the hitherto . . . . Continue Reading »