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Catholicism and the Nation

In 1965, the Second Vatican Council adopted Gaudium et Spes, the Pastoral Constitution on the Church in the Modern World. With this document, the Church sought to address “the whole of humanity.” In a way, this aspiration was not surprising. Christian doctrine holds that Christ died for the . . . . Continue Reading »

Letters

Ross Douthat’s summary of the state of the Catholic conversation (“Catholic Ideas and Catholic Realities,” August/September) demonstrates the author’s typical precision in observing his own intellectual communities. On multiple readings I can find nothing substantially to disagree with; and . . . . Continue Reading »

Eucharistic Coherence

Since being appointed bishop of Springfield, Illinois in 2010, I have been asked many times about the matter of Holy Communion for Sen. Richard Durbin, whose home is in Springfield. In April 2004, Sen. Durbin’s pastor, Msgr. Kevin Vann (now Bishop Kevin Vann of Orange, California), said he would . . . . Continue Reading »

One-Man Revolution

In 1932, while covering a worker’s strike in Washington, D.C., Dorothy Day said a prayer. Since her conversion to Catholicism, she felt that she could no longer join such strikes. Joining a strike was an expression of ­solidarity—and fundamental philosophical differences prevented true . . . . Continue Reading »

Catholic Ideas and Catholic Realities

For the last fifty years, from the Second Vatican Council onward, it made sense to speak of an American Catholicism fully reconciled to liberal democracy. On the fringes there were still some noteworthy anti-liberal and radical Catholic periodicals and writers, but the mainstream was defined by the . . . . Continue Reading »

When Rome Policed Art

A century ago, a little-known Belgian artist named Albert Servaes became famous when cardinals at the Holy Office in Rome censured him for depicting Jesus Christ in a way they considered unsuitable for Catholics. The story made the front page of American Art News in New York. In this . . . . Continue Reading »

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