The Sledgehammer of Modernism

Massive concrete buildings, post-war housing projects, highways torn through old neighborhoods¯so much of the ugliness we take for granted in our cities testifies to influence of Le Corbusier. Born in 1887 as Charles-Edouard Jeanneret, the thin, intense young man from a provincial Swiss . . . . Continue Reading »

Dancing with the Pornographers

Last week, the ABC television show Dancing With the Stars aired its season premiere, bringing professional dancers and celebrities together and seeing what happens when they put on their dancing shoes. Over twenty-two million viewers tuned in to meet the latest match-ups¯in past seasons, the . . . . Continue Reading »

Keep the Fast, Keep the Feast

Over the centuries, Christians have fasted for many reasons. Sometimes the reasons have been good. The apostles and their churches fasted and prayed before selecting elders or ordaining missionaries. Christians have fasted in mourning for their sins. They have fasted and prayed to combat demons and . . . . Continue Reading »

Benedict’s Vatican II Hermeneutic

A March 10 letter to Catholic bishops from Benedict XVI explains why he decided to seek reconciliation with the schismatic Society of St. Pius X. The Vatican lifted the excommunication of four bishops illicitly ordained by Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre in 1988. The letter reveals the pain the pope felt . . . . Continue Reading »

Ratifying U.N. Radicalism

From March 2 until March 13th the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) held their meeting at the United Nations Headquarters in New York. An annual event that coincides with International Women’s Day (March 8), it brings together hundreds of feminists (in theory) to improve the lot of women . . . . Continue Reading »

Proclaiming The Good News

” The gospel was not good advice but good news.” — William R. Inge, Dean of St. Paul’s Cathedral, London, 1911—1934. Dean Inge was right. The preacher’s primary task is not to tell people what to do. It is to proclaim good news. Inge’s younger colleague at St. Paul’s, Canon . . . . Continue Reading »

End of an Era

Fifty years. It seems like a long time. But if you pick up Jacques Barzun’s searching analysis of modern education, The House of Intellect , the half century melts away. Published in 1959, this piquant critique of post-War American attitudes toward the life of the mind remains . . . . Continue Reading »