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Last Things

In 1972, I took part in a Christian panel addressing senior students at a government high school in rural Australia. Afterward, a student approached me to discuss our Catholic claims. He was an unbeliever who was also seeking answers from a small Protestant group. I lost out when I explained that . . . . Continue Reading »

Opiate of the Theologians

Not until the nineteenth century did any Christian body make universal salvation its official teaching. The first to do so, the Universalist Church, later merged with another to form the Unitarian Universalist Association. Within the mainstream churches, medieval and early-modern universalists led a . . . . Continue Reading »


Many Christians feel homesick for a day when they could be fully Christian in public. A rejection of the Christian faith is solidifying in our laws. The implicit primacy of Christian faith which has spanned centuries in the West is fading. The modern-day followers of Christ cry out as in Palestine . . . . Continue Reading »

The Way God Conducts Us

At an academic conference not too long ago, I delivered a paper on St. Paul’s view of marriage and celibacy. In my paper, I took Paul’s side, extolling his vision of marriage and celibacy as interlocking, mutually reinforcing Christian vocations. On the one hand, I said, marriage can be a melody hummed by any pedestrian Christian couple that still calls to mind the full grandeur of the symphony of Christ’s love for the Church. Likewise, the Christian celibate can bear witness to that same love. By giving up the solace of an earthly spouse and the prospect of birthing heirs, the celibate gestures with her very body to a future time when “they neither marry nor are given in marriage . . . because they are equal to angels” (Luke 20:35, 36). Continue Reading »

Remembering John Hick

Explain, John Hick once asked me in an undergraduate class, the traditional axiom that my church holds, “There is no salvation outside the Church.” He argued that Catholics officially maintain this teaching while actually saying the opposite because they cannot come to terms with the reality . . . . Continue Reading »

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