Readers of First Thoughts will know by now that Martin Scorsese’s adaptation of Silence by Shūsaku Endō was released in select theaters on December 23. The novel warrants the attention it is getting. Set in the 1640s at the end of Japan's “Christian Century” (1549-1639), Silence is a haunting journey through one priest’s struggles to remain faithful in the most challenging of circumstances. Continue Reading »
Catholicism comes without an escape clause: Once a person is baptized or received into the Church, there is no getting out. We blaspheme when we presume to undo the consequences of baptism by differentiating between “so-called Catholics” and the genuine article. Continue Reading »
The second challenge I see facing American churches today (I discuss the first one here) is how the Church engages postmodernism in American culture. By “postmodern” I do not simply mean the period succeeding modernity, however one wants to date that. Rather, I mean the subjectivist thrust of . . . . Continue Reading »
Ross Douthat’s Erasmus lecture, “A Crisis of Conservative Catholicism,” and Carl Trueman’s column, “Is There A Crisis in Conservative Protestantism?” put me in mind to think about the American Church. That said, I’m more of a “not-with-a-bang-but-a-whimper” kind of guy, not that . . . . Continue Reading »
A few words before you watch this video.1. The point is obvious, and it’s been said before, but to see it in this high production value should make you at least be happy that the point is also going mainstream.2. The stunning irony of this video is that it comes from North Point Media — . . . . Continue Reading »
We love our stuff, and that makes God less-real to us. We want our relationship with God to be completely under our control the way all our stuff — everything from cars to boxes of paper — is under our control. And because Jesus is not in your face the way this blog is in your face, . . . . Continue Reading »
That’s not the end of what Peter said that day, and we’ll get back to that in a minute. But I think that we have to admit something to ourselves since we know we are like Oprah Winfrey. We have to admit that often, we don’t care about what God wants.
I think there are two reasons for this. ... Continue Reading »