While some of my closest friends are Catholics, I’m not, so I wouldn’t have had a vote in this poll to determine America’s ten greatest Catholic intellectuals.  The current list:

The Catholic Hall of Fame’s Greatest American Catholic intellectuals, in the order of their birth:

  1. Orestes Brownson (1803–1876)

  2. John Courtney Murray (1904-1967)

  3. John Senior (1923-1999)

  4. Avery Dulles (1918-2008)

  5. James Schall (1928-)

  6. Ralph McInerny (1929-2010)

  7. Richard John Neuhaus (1936-2009)

  8. Mary Anne Glendon (1938-)

  9. George Weigel (1951-)

  10. Robert P. George (1955-)

I’d hesitate to subtract any names from the list, but would be tempted to add at least two: the prolific and profound Peter Augustine Lawler and the always interesting Michael Novak.

As the proprietors of the list note, future versions will have a place for clerics like Archbishop Charles Chaput and novelists like Flannery O’Connor (and, I’d add, Walker Percy).

Any nominations or votes from our readers?


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