The Reformation of the Vatican – The Sad Case of Józef Wesołowski

Vatican watchers, especially non-Catholics who love the Roman Catholic Church as I do, watch and pray for further reforms that are needed inside the Church. I was pleased to read this week of the Vatican putting Józef Wesołowski, its former nuncio (ambassador) to the Dominican Republic under house arrest on Tuesday, September 23. Archbishop Józef Wesołowski was born in Nowy Targ, … Read More

Robert Barron on Effective Evangelizing in Our Modern Context

I am in the midst of a blog series titled: “Must the Reformation Wars Continue?” Today I share a short video that is worth watching if you want to see how an outstanding Catholic communicator, and a really good friend, speaks about doing evangelism effectively in our time. There are some exceptional insights here for all Christians. The life of the … Read More

Visions of Vocation

Author Steven Garber wrote one of those rare modern books that I have read twice. Some years ago I developed an answer that I cleverly gave to folks who, upon seeing my immense library (before I sold nearly 15,000 books over the last few years), would gasp at my floor-to-ceiling library shelves and ask me, “Have you read all of … Read More

The Emotive Cry for Community

Michael Novak, in his stirring memoir of a journey from left to right, devotes an entire chapter to community, as I noted yesterday. He writes: “One of life’s most time-consuming tasks is to achieve disagreement with an ideological opposite. Without blinking, you might object; ‘It’s not had to disagree. Heck! Most people do it all the time” (282). But aren’t … Read More

The Carter Years and the Bankruptcy of Bad Economic Ideas

The Carter years profoundly convinced Michael Novak of the bankruptcy of his previous economic ideas. While Novak explains Carter’s personal love for Jesus Christ as genuine, and easily misunderstood, he rightly separates the good heart of the man from some of his very bad ideas about what makes for a free and prosperous society. During the Carter years Novak’s own … Read More

From Socialism to Capitalism – A Move That Cost Michael Novak Friends and Prestige

Michael Novak, author of the memoir Writing from Left to Right: My Journey from Liberal to Conservative (Basic Books, 2013), writes eloquently of how he became disillusioned with the “new” versions of the old Keynesian liberalism of the 1970s. This economic view promoted government spending to excess in order to stimulate the economy and create jobs. The core belief was … Read More

Michael Novak: On Forming Good Intellectual and Spiritual Habits

Michael Novak, not to be confused with the late conservative journalist Robert Novak, has been (rightly I believe) described as “one of the world’s most influential social philosophers.” He has played a number of prominent roles in American life, ranging from advising candidates and presidents to teaching and writing on the ethics of the free market and welfare reform. He … Read More

Writing from Left to Right: An Engaging Memoir

One of the most fascinating and engaging political stories that I have read in years is the recently published book, Writing from Left to Right: My Journey from Liberal to Conservative (Image: New York, 2013). This unique memoir is written by Roman Catholic scholar Michael Novak. I found Novak’s memoir so deeply interesting, for both Christian and personal reasons, that … Read More

Rethinking a Christian Response to Suicide

I am continually amazed at the lack of sensitivity and pastoral grace that many Christians have regarding their response to a death by suicide. There was a time when Christians–Catholic, Orthodox and Protestant–generally considered suicide an “unpardonable sin.” For this reason when a person took their own life the family was left with the profound sense that their loved one … Read More

The Danger of Gossip

Which is worse, lying or gossiping? Have you ever bothered to ponder this question? I have asked it, more than once, but not thought about it deeply enough I confess. Seriously, think about this one for a moment. Mother Antonia Brenner, a precious Christian who passed away last week in Mexico, makes a clear and compelling case that gossip is … Read More