Gridiron Nation

At least 60 percent of Americans will join in the festival, some with detachment, others ecstatically. On few other days will stores and restaurants be so empty and only on Thanksgiving do Americans eat more food. Every year the Internet buzzes with petitions demanding recognition of the Monday . . . . Continue Reading »

Rick ’n Jesus

Both Billy Graham and Rick Warren are ordained ministers in the Southern Baptist Convention, but their ecumenical import and stature as worldwide ambassadors for Christ have far exceeded their early success as a brash youth evangelist and a colorful church planter. From his base at Saddleback Church . . . . Continue Reading »

Samuel Adams: Brewing the Revolution

Most Americans today know the name Samuel Adams as a popular brand of beer. But according to Ira Stoll, former managing editor of the lamentably defunct New York Sun , Adams the statesman, writer, and political philosopher (and yes, one-time brewer) should be remembered instead for his vital role in . . . . Continue Reading »

At Home with Dickens

From Disney movies to the most recent bestseller, children are born to escape the confines of familial failure. No hero is worth his salt unless and until he casts off the shackles of parental mismanagement. Or so we are often told.Traditionally, the trajectory of the heroic quest has been the . . . . Continue Reading »

A Small-Town New Yorker

As a boy in the 1960s, I walked to school, knew my neighbors, could point out the building where my father was born and, a few blocks away, the place my mother grew up (they met at a parish social). I ran in parks with friends, hung out in the local boys’ club after school, played ball, and . . . . Continue Reading »

Faith & Fertility

With fertility rates dipping to almost one child per woman in Spain and other European countries, it’s hard to even imagine the future. Who will work and pay all those retirement benefits to the current and larger generation of workers? How can societies with declining populations maintain a . . . . Continue Reading »

In The Beginning

I’ve been working on a commentary on the book of Genesis, and the very first verse presents challenges. “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.” The traditional rendering is on the outs these days. New translations shy away from the metaphysical atmosphere of an . . . . Continue Reading »

The February Issue Has Arrived

Hundreds of books have been written in an attempt to explain American exceptionalism, as Richard John Neuhaus notes in a major essay called “ Secularizations ” in the February issue of First Things . In recent years, however, the table has been turned, and the question of increasingly . . . . Continue Reading »

Rowan’s Rule

Rowan Williams is without doubt one of the most significant and learned theologians in the English-speaking world. Unfortunately, during his tenure at Canterbury, it has at times seemed that he has managed to get nearly everyone in that world angry at him, liberals and conservatives alike. As Rupert . . . . Continue Reading »

Remembering Martin Luther King, Jr.

This essay by Richard John Neuhaus, who passed away January 8, 2009 , was originally printed in the October 2002 issue of First Things .I know it is a fact, but it is nonetheless hard to picture: Had he lived, Martin Luther King, Jr. would now be seventy-three years old. Everybody of a certain age . . . . Continue Reading »