George Weigel is distinguished senior fellow of the Ethics and Public Policy Center in Washington, D.C.

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G.K. Chesterton, Genius

From Web Exclusives

In a review quoted on the back cover of Ian Ker’s G.K. Chesterton: A Biography (Oxford), Susan Elkin suggests that Fr. Ker’s book “has the potential to establish Chesterton in what Ker regards as his rightful place as a major English author.” That’s certainly true; but one does wonder about that “Ker regards… .” business. Does Ms. Elkin not regard Chesterton as a “major English author”? I imagine she would regard George Bernard Shaw, Chesterton’s friendly antagonist, as such; and Shaw without doubt regarded Chesterton as such… . Continue Reading »

A Chapel of Consequence

From Web Exclusives

CRACOW”The chapel in the archbishop’s residence in Cracow”which everyone calls by its street name, “Franciszkanska 3””has witnessed a lot of modern Church history. Here, clandestine seminarians watched the city’s heroic archbishop, Adam Stefan Sapieha, put the terrible problems of the long, dark night of Occupation before the Lord, every night during World War II… . Continue Reading »

Living Inside the Bible

From Web Exclusives

Cracow, Poland”The village of Pasierbiec is in the south of Poland, about thirty miles from the old royal capital of Cracow. Its church, the Basilica of Our Lady of Consolation, is full of votum gifts testifying to favors received through the intercession of the basilica’s namesake… . Continue Reading »

The Civil War Sesquicentennial: Summer Reading

From Web Exclusives

As I remember it, the Civil War centenary, which coincided with my middle school years, got far more public attention than the war’s sesquicentennial has received. There were a flurry of Gettysburg sesquicentennial columns and book reviews in July; the Civil War Daily Gazette provides a reminder, in detail and every 24 hours, of the drama that was unfolding across the land, 150 years ago; Tommy Lee Jones did the impossible by rendering Thaddeus Stevens an attractive character in the Spielberg film, Lincoln. But it would be a stretch to say that this colossal event, which made the United States an “is” rather than an “are,” is prominent in the nation’s consciousness in this anniversary period… . Continue Reading »

On Really Not Getting It

From Web Exclusives

In the wake of late-term abortionist Kermit Gosnells homicide convictions this past May, several state legislatures began crafting laws that would protect unborn life at earlier stages of gestation while shutting down horror houses like Gosnell’s Philadelphia “clinic.” Whether these laws will stand constitutional scrutiny remains to be seen; what is worth noting now is the degree to which deeply-entrenched supporters of the unrestricted abortion license created by the Supreme Court in 1973 still don’t get it … Continue Reading »

Zingers, Previously Unused

From Web Exclusives

When I began columnizing, in the Paleolithic Period when a correcting IBM Selectric II typewriter seemed the ne plus ultra of technology-for-scribes, I collected quotable quotes in a plastic box, for possible insertion into columns in the manner of my friend, Dr. George F. Will. Rooting around the yellowing scraps in that box recently, I came across a gaggle of zingers that went unused, but which it seems a shame not to share with readers and posterity. So, for a little summer levity, here we go … . Continue Reading »

Fighting on New Terrain

From the Aug/Sept 2013 Print Edition

A few months ago, after I had given a lecture on the future of Catholicism in Kennewick, Washington, a middle-aged fellow who looked to be a rancher got up and stunned me with a query. “For the past twenty-five years,” he said, “you and your colleagues have tried to create a ‘religiously . . . . Continue Reading »