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Immigration Reinhold Niebuhr’s Christian ­realism, which was lately set forth in Matthew Schmitz’s “Immigration Idealism” (May), famously relegates ­Jesus’s social teaching to the realm of the ideal rather than the possible. Schmitz’s endorsement of this realism makes a mistake that . . . . Continue Reading »

To Uproot or To Plant

Christianity lives in the tension between its apocalyptic vision of life and its creational mandate to occupy. The former pushes Christians to uproot and pull down the orders of society while the latter draws them back toward the earth and roots them in the orders of creation. Continue Reading »

Obama, Lincoln & Niebuhr

There are numerous defenders of President Obama’s prayer breakfast appeal for Christians to not “get on our high horse” about criticizing Islamic violence and to recall the Crusades, Inquisition and American racial segregation. 
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The Disputed Legacy of Reinhold Niebuhr

Besides being the quincentenary of Columbus’ voyage, 1992 has also been the centenary of the birth of the American churchman Reinhold Niebuhr (1892–1971). From the 1930s through the 1950s, Niebuhr was regarded by many as a kind of prophet, a public theologian who could explain modern discontents . . . . Continue Reading »

The Personal Niebuhr

Remembering Reinhold Niebuhr: Letters of Reinhold and Ursula Niebuhredited by Ursula M. NiebuhrHarperCollins, 432 pages, $29.95 In a perverse way, we have Richard W. Fox to thank for this most interesting volume of letters of the late Reinhold Niebuhr and illustrious correspondents. . . . . Continue Reading »

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