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March 2010 signifies First Things ’ 20th Anniversary. To celebrate, we’ve compiled a cross-section of the magazine’s highlights from the last two decades. We had an embarrassment of riches to choose from, a reminder to all of us of the lasting significance of the magazine’s achievements. Please join us in celebrating, and enjoy the 20th Anniversary Issue, available on newsstands and online today.

First Things began as not only as the vision of Fr. Richard John Neuhaus, but also the result of efforts by a small group of advisors to help him nurture it from idea to reality”trusted friends and partners in what would become his extended professional family. One was James Nuechterlein, who came aboard as Fr. Neuhaus’ editor and remained with First Things until 2003. Another was George Weigel, a close advisor to Fr. Neuhaus throughout the transition, who joined the magazine’s board of directors where he has remained a close friend and guiding spirit to the magazine ever since. And Maria McFadden Maffucci, now editor of Human Life Review , served the group with distinction during that crucial year of gestation as the magazine came to life.

Recently, First Things ’ current fellows”Ryan Sayre Patrico, Meghan Duke and Kevin Staley-Joyce”interviewed Nuechterlein and Weigel about their memories of the magazine’s earliest days. We’re presenting them here as an oral history of that exciting period, along with Maffucci’s memorable memoir/essay on the April 2009 issue of First Things , “ The Rockford Raid ”.

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