Schall on Hell

From First Thoughts

A copy of Fr. James Schall’s newest book,  The Modern Age , recently arrived in our offices. As the title implies, the scope of the work is in fact vast, but the book itself is not more than 250 pages. As anyone familiar with Fr. Schall’s work might be able to predict, it eschews the . . . . Continue Reading »

Haunted by a Phantom Heresy

From First Thoughts

Leading politicians of both the left and the right have made headlines over the past few weeks for what might charitably be described as their creative reinterpretations of Catholic teaching. But beyond what must be acknowledged as the sheer error of their statements vis-à-vis church positions . . . . Continue Reading »

The Censorship Farce

From First Thoughts

If it’s true that history’s second appearance is as a farce, then the public uproar (or total lack thereof) surrounding the David Wojnarowicz exhibition“Hide/Seek”, known mostly for featuring an 11-second-long video of a crucifix with ants crawling over it, is one boring comedy. . . . . Continue Reading »

The Continuing Challenges for the Catholic Campaign for Human Development

From Web Exclusives

There are legitimate grounds for disagreement with Fr. Val Peter’s article on the Catholic Campaign for Human Development, but Richard Wood’s reply, posted this past Wednesday, does not offer a single concrete counterexample to the initial charges. Instead, the reply begins, continues, and ends with a broad reassurance that has much in common with the raw assertion of a press release… . Continue Reading »

Rethinking College Athletics

From First Thoughts

Writing for the Manhattan Institute’s blog, Jonathan Imber  offers some pointed reflections  on the student reaction to the recent scandal at Penn State. While our own  Joe Carter dealt  with the character of the students who were more outraged over the termination of a . . . . Continue Reading »

The Clock and the Crescent

From First Thoughts

As Muslims gather to undertake the  hajj  pilgrimage, the city of Mecca itself is experiencing a major transformation which seems to mirror larger upheavals in the Islamic world. A massive hotel complex featuring the world’s second tallest building has opened literally across the . . . . Continue Reading »

Cognitive Dissonance on Population

From First Thoughts

With the birth of the world’s seven billionth person on October 31 (or thereabouts), the ongoing rumble about overpopulation rose an octave higher than usual. A group called the Center for Biological Diversity launched an “ awareness campaign ” linking contraceptive use to . . . . Continue Reading »

The Calvinist Infiltrators

From First Thoughts

On October 19, a high-ranking official in the Southern Baptist Convention named resurgent Calvinism as the “ top challenge ” facing the congregation for the foreseeable future—quite a statement, especially when considering what an outside observer might imagine to be the usual . . . . Continue Reading »

Augustine at the Movies

From First Thoughts

Thomas F. Bertonneau ponders the  current popularity  of hardcore horror movies. Responding to “Spengler” (our own David P. Goldman), who asserts that  the appeal of “sado-masochistic” films in the past decade can be traced to reality-blurring events like 9/11 . . . . Continue Reading »