Neuhaus’ Law confirmed again

(HT: Carl Trueman) The late Fr. Richard John Neuhaus proposed what came to be known as Neuhaus' Law: "Where orthodoxy is optional, orthodoxy will sooner or later be proscribed." Over at Reformation21, Liam Goligher shares this tale from the Church of England. Apparently, in the Anglican communion, opposing the ordination of female bishops has gone from optional to proscribed. … [Read more...]

Evangelical Catholicity and “The New Evangelical Scandal”

I published this last year in Houston Baptist University's periodical The City. My essay is one of two responses to Matthew Lee Anderson's insightful piece, "The New Evangelical Scandal." The other response was penned by my friend, John Mark Reynolds, Professor of Philosophy and Director of the Torrey Honors Program at Biola University. As you can probably tell, I had a lot of fun writing it. Here it is republished in toto. … [Read more...]

Chris Castaldo on the Catholic Church and the New Evangelization

My friend, Chris Castaldo, an Evangelical Protestant pastor, has posted an entry on the Gospel Coalition blog ("Pope Unveils Agency for New Evangelization") in which he invites input from his readers. If you want to read the post and the comments, go hear. Although Pastor Castaldo's post is well-written, informed, and thoughtful, as many of us have come to expect from him over the years, I can not say the same for the public witness of some of the post's commentators. Thus, Catholics easily … [Read more...]

My sister, Elizabeth, in action

My sister, Elizabeth Beckwith, on the Late, Late Show ten years ago (June 2000): … [Read more...]

Don’t know much about theology

That is the title of my latest essay published on The Catholic Thing. Here is how it begins: A few weeks ago, my wife and I were watching an episode of “The O’Reilly Factor” in which the host, Bill O’Reilly, was interviewing Bill Maher, a comedian and host of HBO’s “Real Time.” They were discussing religion, with the focus on Christianity. Neither one seemed to know much about the topic, though Mr. O’Reilly seemed slightly better informed. And this on the Fox News channel, which … [Read more...]

October 15 on Catholic Answers Live!

On October 15 3-4 pm PDT I will be the guest on Catholic Answers Live to discuss my recently published article in the September/October 2010 issue of The Rock, "Government Forms (and Deforms) the Soul." Portions of the article are adapted from my latest book, Politics for Christians: Statecraft as Soulcraft (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 2010) … [Read more...]

Going to Ole Miss – October 18

On Monday, October 18, I will be in Oxford, Mississippi speaking at the law school at the University of Mississippi on the topic, "Disenfranchising Believers: Why the Religious Motive Test Violates Religious Free Exercise." … [Read more...]

Is Catholicism Rational?: Reflections on the Catholic-Protestant Divide

Suppose someone, like me, a life-long Christian, after considering the arguments for and against Catholicism, decides that the case for Catholicism makes more sense to me than does the case for Protestantism, even though I believe that one can become and/or remain a Protestant without being unreasonable in doing so. I raise this query because there are some--on both sides of the Catholic-Protestant divide--who think that if you don't see the obvious truth of either position (depending on which … [Read more...]

St. Thomas Aquinas for the intelligent non-specialist

I am sometimes asked what book or books I would recommend as an introduction to the thought of St. Thomas Aquinas for the intelligent non-specialist. Here is my advice. You should first read Ralph McInerny's entry on St. Thomas in the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Then you can move on to these three books, which are some of my favorites: Ralph McInerny, A First Glance at Thomas Aquinas: A Guide for Peeping Thomists (Notre Dame, IN: University of Notre Dame Press, 1990) Brian Davies, … [Read more...]

My two appearances on EWTN’s “The Journey Home”

New readers to Return to Rome may not know I have appeared twice on the EWTN program, The Journey Home, hosted by Marcus Grodi. On both programs I discuss my return to the Catholic Church after 30 years as an Evangelical Protestant. Just click either one to watch the video: The Journey Home - 24 September 2007 The Journey Home - 14 September 2009 … [Read more...]


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