Support First Things by turning your adblocker off or by making a  donation. Thanks!

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

RSS Feed

Rome and Moscow

From Web Exclusives

Russian Federation president Dmitri Medvedev’s recent visit to the Vatican, which included an audience with Pope Benedict XVI, is being trumpeted in some quarters as further evidence of a dramatic breakthrough in relations between the Holy See and Russia, and between the Catholic Church and the Russian Orthodox Church. … Continue Reading »

The Chutzpa of the German Theologians

From Web Exclusives

In The Joys of Yiddish, Leo Rosten defined chutzpa as “…Presumption-plus-arrogance such as no other word, and no other language, can do justice to” and then offered classic examples of chutzpa in action: “Chutzpa is that quality enshrined in a man who, having killed his mother and father, throws himself on the mercy of the court because he is an orphan… . Continue Reading »

Clarifying “Double Effect”

From Web Exclusives

The recent controversy over the termination of a pregnancy at Phoenix’s St. Joseph’s Hospital, which Phoenix bishop Thomas Olmstead determined to have been a direct abortion and thus a grave moral evil, has generated a secondary controversy over the meaning of the Church’s traditional moral principle of “double effect.” … Continue Reading »

Sargent Shriver and His Times

From Web Exclusives

R. Sargent Shriver, who died on Jan. 18, was the last of the classic American Catholic liberals. Advocate of racial justice when that took real courage; founding director of the Peace Corps and inspiration of a generation of Americans dedicated to serving the global poor; director of Lyndon Johnson’s well-intended if ill-conceived domestic War on Poverty; ambassador to France and vice-presidential candidate … Continue Reading »

Christian Number-Crunching

From Web Exclusives

For 27 years, the International Bulletin of Missionary Research has published an annual “Status of Global Mission” report, which attempts to quantify the world Christian reality, comparing Christianity’s circumstances to those of other faiths … Continue Reading »

Aggie Catholic Renaissance

From Web Exclusives

Where can you find a Catholic chaplaincy at an institution of higher learning that’s looking to expand its church to seat 1,400, because the current 850 just isn’t enough? South Bend, Indiana, perhaps? Well, no, actually: College Station, Texas, where the Catholic chaplaincy at Texas A&M, St. Mary’s Catholic Center, is setting a new national standard for Catholic campus ministry… . Continue Reading »

A Life of Miracles

From Web Exclusives

The otherwise inexplicable cure of a French nun suffering from Parkinson’s disease was accepted in early January by the Congregation for the Causes of Saints and Pope Benedict XVI as the confirming miracle that clears the way for the beatification of Pope John Paul II on May 1, Divine Mercy Sunday… . Continue Reading »

The Chattering Classes Are Us

From Web Exclusives

Catholics once had an intuitive understanding of sacred space: To enter a church, especially in the presence of the Blessed Sacrament, was to enter a different kind of environment, one of the hallmarks of which was a reverent silence. Some of that intuition remains… . Continue Reading »

The Reagan Centenary

From Web Exclusives

February 6 is the centenary of the birth of Ronald Wilson Reagan, one of the most intriguing public figures of our time. Clark Clifford, the ultimate Washington “insiders,” dismissed him as an “amiable dunce.” Yet Reagan’s posthumously published diaries and speech notes show a man of considerable insight and intelligence, who was shrewd enough to understand that the contempt of the elites was a political asset in securing the loyalty of the electorate and in getting what he wanted out of Congress and the federal bureaucracy… . Continue Reading »