Cardinal O’Malley’s Magnificent Address on Unity at Gordon College

One of the most remarkable addresses I have watched this year was on the occasion of the 125th anniversary of historic Gordon College (Massachusetts). Gordon College is the flagship evangelical college in New England. Like all such evangelical colleges it is openly growing into deeper relationship with Catholics with each passing year. This lecture marks one of the most wonderful calls … Read More

Two Modern Films That Define Us as Americans, Part Two

In complete contrast with American Sniper the new film McFarland USA is a Disney movie. It is also based on a true story. It is an against-all-odds story of the 1987 McFarland high school cross country team in an economically challenged community in the central valley of California. Some reviewers think the film is “corny” and hopelessly romanticized. I found it … Read More

Thomas Merton on the Catholicity of Ecumenism

Thomas Merton (1915-1968) was a writer and Trappist monk at Our Lady of Gethsemani Abbey in Kentucky, not too far from Louisville. His writings include such classics as The Seven Storey Mountain, New Seeds of Contemplation, and Zen and the Birds of Appetite. Merton is the author of more than seventy books that include poetry, personal journals, collections of letters, … 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 War on Poverty Fifty Years Later

Fifty years today (January 8, 1964), in his first State of the Union address, President Lyndon Johnson proposed a piece of legislation that came to be known as the “War on Poverty.” This legislation was proposed by the president in response to a national poverty rate that had reached around nineteen percent. The speech led the U.S. Congress to pass the Economic Opportunity Act, which … Read More

Mutuality and Kinship with Those on the Margins

Father Gregory “Greg” Joseph Boyle (1954) is an American Jesuit priest. He is the founder and Director of Homeboy Industries and the former pastor of Dolores Mission Church. Boyle earned his BA in English from Gonzaga University, an MA in English from Loyola Marymount University, a Master of Divinity from the Weston School of Theology, and a Sacred Theology Masters degree from the Jesuit School of Theology.[3] Before founding Homeboy Industries, Father Greg taught at Loyola High School and worked … Read More

James Meredith: An Idiosyncratic American

Yesterday I gave an overview of James Meredith’s new book, A Mission from God. Today I follow-up that blog with reflections on the final chapter of this moving civil rights memoir. After telling about his interesting and rather eccentric life James Meredith begins his final chapter by writing: I am an old man. I have spent almost eighty years on … Read More

Our Global Future – How Will We Respond?

Growing population and poverty are inextricably linked together in the modern world. Very few Christians in America recognize this problem for what it is nor do they seriously discuss solutions and responses. It seems to me that a simple, basic expression of the love of God requires that we not only have this dialogue but that we prepare our churches … Read More