A “Modest Proposal” for a Pastoral Year Apostolate

As the academic year winds down, administrators go into overdrive in planning for the next year, hence, the rationale for my present musings. Since it appears that most seminaries/dioceses are now moving (or have moved) to a mandatory … [Read more...]

Snapdragon: Newman and Distance Education

If you know your John Henry Newman, you know that snapdragon, that beautiful flower capable of growing on stone walls, was the emblem of his stay at Oriel College (he would see the blooms from his window every spring and wrote a poem about … [Read more...]

Newman: Conscience as an Ongoing Activity

St. John Henry Newman eloquently presents his idea of conscience as something actively engaged both with the realities of lived experience and with direct apprehension of a particular situation. Logic is part of one’s assessment of the s … [Read more...]

Recent Works on St. John Henry Cardinal Newman

A Review Essay

Cimorelli, Christopher. John Henry Newman’s Theology of History: Historical Consciousness, Theological ‘Imaginaries’, and the Development of Tradition. Leuven: Peeters, 2017. xii + 356 pages. Softcover: $98.00. ISBN: 978-9 … [Read more...]

Newman‘s Concept of Conscience in His Quest for Moral Truth

The question about truth is vividly present in the teachings of the Catholic Church throughout the ages. The discourse on truth — which resounds in the question posed to Christ, “What is truth?” (Jn 18:38) — has been heard throughout the cen … [Read more...]

Conscience as Relationship, Part II

A Dialogue through Which God Takes Us beyond Ourselves

In the second of these two articles on conscience[1. See Francis Etheredge, “Conscience as Relationship, Part I: General Principles and Personal Experience,” Homiletic & Pastoral Review (Jan 2020), hpr … [Read more...]

Aquinas as Biblical Exegete

His Interpretation of Paul’s “Thorn in the Flesh”

No doubt Thomas Aquinas is most famous as a systematic theologian who made great use of philosophical sources such as Aristotle’s Metaphysics. Nevertheless, when Aquinas first taught at the University of Paris, he held the title of Magister … [Read more...]

Early Summer Book Reviews

Did Jesus Really Rise from the Dead?: Questions and Answers about the Life, Death, and Resurrection of Jesus Christ. By Carl E. Olson. (Ignatius Press, 2016), 199 pages. Reviewed by Matthew B. Rose The Walls Are Talking: Former Abortion … [Read more...]

St. Thérèse of Lisieux and Cardinal Newman

19th Century Prophets of Lay Spirituality

It is common these days to read of certain figures whose contribution to the Church in some way prefigured the reforms of Vatican II—e.g., de Lubac, Congar—but among them also are the figures of St. Thérèse of Lisieux, the Little Flower, and … [Read more...]

Reflections on Reminders in our Lives

There’s an old joke about the definition of a college professor: “Oh, that would be someone who can’t say anything just once.” Having spent 35 years at the front of classrooms at two universities, I can attest to the aptness of the descrip … [Read more...]

Practicing What We Preach

As he struggled with the question of whether or not to enter into full communion with the Catholic Church, John Henry Newman expressed his desire to encounter ministers of Christ carrying out the mission of their Lord and his Apostles in … [Read more...]

A Pastoral Society

The Renewal of Catholic Culture and the Flourishing of Human Society

Introduction In the Catholic intellectual community, there is a growing call for the renewal of Christian culture as a solution to the impoverishment of 21st century society. This intellectual movement has two momentums: on the one hand, … [Read more...]

Benedict XVI on Freedom in Obedience to the Truth: A Key for the New Evangelization

... the more fundamental task ... is to form human hearts, beginning with those who have already been evangelized and need to be “newly evangelized,” those who know something already, but are not living it; those who are showing up in the pe … [Read more...]

On Catholic History

The Catholic sacramental perspective continues (consciously or not) to inspire the works of historians who recognize the importance of material reality—of politics, society, economics, the arts, and all the habits and institutions of human c … [Read more...]

The Side Effects of the Pill: Why the Church Has So Much to Say about Contraception

The Church pays special attention to the issue of contraception ... because so many of the modern errors in moral theology converge in this particular question of conjugal morality. There is an impression out there–in the world and even w … [Read more...]