Avery Cardinal Dulles

Avery Cardinal Dulles was one of the greatest thinkers in the modern Roman Catholic church and perhaps its most distinguished representative in the United States. The first American to be named a cardinal soley for his theological work, and for his last two decades a professor at Fordham University, . . . . Continue Reading »

The “American” Religion

The great contest is over the culture, the guiding ideas and habits of mind and heart that inform the way we understand the world and our place in it. Christians who, knowingly or unknowingly, embrace the model of “Christ without culture”—meaning Christianity in indifference to culture—are . . . . Continue Reading »

Avery Cardinal Dulles, 1918—2008

Word has reached us that Avery Cardinal Dulles, S.J., died here in New York early this morning. Created cardinal for his theological work by John Paul II, Avery Dulles was one of the great figures of the twentieth century: a theologian, an intellectual, a teacher, a writer, a lecturer, and a kind . . . . Continue Reading »

Conservatism and the Culture Wars

Politics is an arena of conflict. I want a certain set of policies and laws. You want something different. We fight it out in public debate and in the electoral process. Welcome to the rough-and-tumble world of sound bites, negative advertising, and hardball tactics.It’s wrong to wring our . . . . Continue Reading »

William Placher, 1948–2008

William C. Placher was my undergraduate mentor at Wabash College and became my colleague when I returned to teach there. He died on November 30, 2008 at age sixty while on sabbatical at the Collegeville Institute for Ecumenical Research at St. John’s University in Minnesota. His beloved mother . . . . Continue Reading »

Support First Things

Dear First Things Reader,“God loves a cheerful giver,” St. Paul wrote to the Corinthians. Over almost twenty years, the readers of First Things have demonstrated that they are generous givers, and I would like to think that you are cheerful givers as well.To be sure, this year is not like . . . . Continue Reading »

The Religion Business

In recent weeks, we’ve been reflecting on the “Christ and culture” question as classically framed by H. Richard Niebuhr.Recall the five ways of thinking about this: Christ against culture, the Christ of culture, Christ above culture, Christ and culture in paradox , and Christ . . . . Continue Reading »

Happy New Liturgical Year!

Happy New Year. Yes, I’m pushing it, but not as much as you think. I’m not talking about those woozie performances of “Auld Lang Syne” and the Rose Bowl, but instead the first Sunday of Advent that started off this week.Once a year I have the pleasure of introducing our students . . . . Continue Reading »