Beauty For Truth’s Sake: The Creed’s Amazing Hidden Symmetry Between Son & Spirit

One of the most persistent claims of the Catholic tradition is that truth, goodness, being, and beauty are convertible.Yet, the relationship between truth and beauty is probably the most difficult to see for us. Leo Tolstoy is representative of this trend (think: Nietzsche's saving lie)  when he says  in his Kreutzer Sonata, "It is amazing how complete is the delusion that beauty is goodness.” Hans Urs von Balthasar almost single-handedly fought to repair this rift in his theological aest … [Read More...]

The English Domini-Canes run a great blog too.

Dare We Hope That All Dogs Go To Heaven?

Dare we hope that all dogs go to heaven? Sure, why not? Though there's no reason to believe cats will go as well.The canine chances seem better than the chances for us humans. They are the animal kingdom's model of fidelity. I mean, do you see any dogs (besides your neighbors) getting divorced?Pope Paul VI once made a pronouncement upon this dogged question, “One day we will see our animals in the eternity of Christ.” These words proved to be so popular they were put in Francis' mouth las … [Read More...]

Henry Ossawa Tanner, The Thankful Poor, 1894.

In the Beginning Was Poverty: Advent Should Rob You Blind

Why does the German church get a lot of grief for its spiritual opulence? Because it deserves it.German Catholicism has a lot of money in its coffers thanks to unbroken economic prosperity since World War II. Yet, its membership is dwindling at Episcopalian rates.If there is one voice in that ecclesial body crying for an interruption from God, then Johannes Baptist Metz is that voice. His name seems to have predestined him for this role.When Metz mentions "spiritual opulence" in the … [Read More...]

Catholic Imagination: The divine in the human (the reverse is true too). Daniel Mitsui.

Ruined by Books: TOP10 Catholic Studies Books

Some time ago I started a series of topical TOP10 lists. I got as far as doing two (one on philosophy and one on novels) before I temporarily ran out of steam. The kettle is back on the stove today.Several people have asked me about books to read in Catholic Studies (CS--not Lewis), so I'm compiling a list with publisher blurbs, their titles linked, and covers here today. You might also want to look at the nearly comprehensive reader: Catholic Spirit: An Anthology for Discovering Faith T … [Read More...]

Apparently, that's what He said.

God Plays the Numbers

Last week's first post on torture (see the more divisive second one here) mentioned Stratford Caldecott's All Things Made New. One of the many things I've learned from this book is something about something I hate: numbers.I was a good math student in high school right up until AP calculus, but my friends were brilliant.I gave up on math knowing that I could never develop the natural acumen they had. I secretly came to hate numbers and turned to the humanities for refuge.All Things … [Read More...]

God does his thing despite our bad spelling.

Stephen Herreid’s God: A Holiday Thank You Note

Two weeks ago I drove our family Volvo forty miles vaguely aware something was wrong with it. I needed to take the car to some trusted mechanics. Halfway through the trip the left wheel-well began to make a pneumatic drill nose. It kept getting louder. I drove onto the shoulder of the highway, did a walk-around, found nothing, and then kept on driving despite the noise. I had no money for a tow-truck.Two days later the car went to the shop while I was busy moving our family from Seattle … [Read More...]

Yes, torture is a tool of refined societies like ours, especially when we seek to impose order on those we label barbarians. (Bartolomeo Manfredi, Apollo and Marsyas, circa 1610)

Torture and Eucharist?

It's been noted (initially by the author of a book on the theology of the body--extended) that yesterday's post on the already infamous torture report ought to have mentioned William T. Cavanaugh's Torture and Eucharist. His book develops a theology of the Eucharist by surprisingly contrasting it with torture as practiced by totalitarian regimes in Latin America: Where torture is an anti-liturgy for the realization of the state’s power on the bodies of others, the Eucharist is the realization o … [Read More...]


The Torture Report and the Antichrist

One story stood out from the morning TV buzz today: the United States is preparing for attacks. The reason behind it? The government believes that its torture programs were (are?) so nefarious that they call for retribution (read about the report's most gruesome moments here). Some strange dialectic has turned the state's efforts to make us safe after 9/11 into a danger-producing machine. Not even killing Saddam had the intended effects!Strangely enough, Stratford Caldecott's All Things … [Read More...]

Oh my!

God, Interviewed!

I've had some fun doing interviews for Cosmos and at Ethika Politika. Below is something no interviewer should go through.I ran across this video on the wall of a friend who is the author of a highly praised book on the divine names (can't help plugging him). He knows a thing or two about this stuff and, according to him, this clip is mostly theologically accurate.Enjoy this as I begin contemplating packing ahead of our big move. If you're in the Seattle area get a hold of me. I have … [Read More...]


Guest Post: An Ignatian Meditation on why Artur Rosman was Defamed

This is a guest post by Dr. Justin Tse of the University of Washington.==================================================On October 24, 2014, a politically conservative blogger, Stephen Herreid, performed an Internet hit job on my friend and colleague, Dr. Artur Rosman. He might as well have tried to character assassinate Rabelais himself. While taken to task by both Patheos Catholic's Sam Rocha, the Mitralleuse's J. Arthur Bloom (as quoted in Herreid's response), and Rosman himself, … [Read More...]