The Court of Disbelief: The Constitution’s Article VI Religious Test Prohibition and the Judiciary’s Religious Motive Analysis.

That is the title of an article I published in 2006 in the Hastings Constitutional Law Quarterly 33.2 & 3, pp. 337-360. I bring this to your attention because I cited it in a recent exchange I had with a friend on my Facebook wall.  Here's how the article begins: In several federal cases concerning whether particular statutes or policies violate the First Amendment’s prohibition of religious establishment, both the United States Supreme Court and other federal courts have rejected the … [Read more...]

The Epistemology of Political Correctness

That's the title of an article I published in the October 1994 issue of Public Affairs Quarterly (8.4, pp. 331-340). It is now available online, and you can find it here. It begins this way: On university and college campuses today there is a movement popularly known as "political correctness." Although difficult to define precisely, I think it is fair to say that political correctness refers to a web of interconnected, though not mutually dependent, ideological beliefs that have challenged the … [Read more...]

The National Day of Reason Doesn’t Have A Prayer

That's the title of my latest column over at The Catholic Thing. It begins this way: May 5, 2011, is the National Day of Prayer. It has been an annual American observance since Congress enacted it in 1952. The law simply states: “The President shall issue each year a proclamation designating the first Thursday in May as a National Day of Prayer on which the people of the United States may turn to God in prayer and meditation at churches, in groups, and as individuals.” Since 2003, secular … [Read more...]

Edith Schaeffer, me, and April 29

Four years ago tomorrow, April 29, 2007, I was publicly received into the Catholic Church at 11:00 am at St. Joseph's Parish in Belmead, Texas. The day before, I participated in the sacrament of confession for the first time in over 30 years. Oddly, 25 years ago, on April 29, 1986, I met Edith Schaeffer, the widow of Francis A. Schaffer. I tell the story of our encounter in my book, Return to Rome: Confession of An Evangelical Catholic (Brazos Press, 2009): During my second year in New York City … [Read more...]

South Park’s prophetic depiction of the atheist wars

Here's the low-down on what's happening in real time between factions of contemporary atheists. Thankfully, South Park has given us a vision of what the future would be like if dominated by such atheist conflicts. You can view it here. (Warning: some salty language) … [Read more...]

John Paul II and Evangelicals: An Ecumenism of Reason and Life

That is the title of an essay I just published at HeadlineBistro.com, "a service of the Knights of Columbus dedicated to bringing readers the top, daily headlines that Catholics need to know."  My essay is one of several published this week by HeadlineBistro.com in celebration of the May 1, 2011 beatification of the late Pope John Paul II. My essay begins: As we reflect on the life of John Paul II at the eve of his beatification, we should remember the ways in which the late pontiff touched … [Read more...]

Fr. Thomas Crean’s Argument for God’s Existence from Necessary Truths

In his book, God is No Delusion: A Refutation of Richard Dawkins (Ignatius Press, 2007), Thomas Crean, O. P., offers several arguments for God's existence, the most intriguing of which is the following. Fr. Crean begins with the question, “What is ultimate, mind or matter?” First, he asks us to consider necessary truths. What are those? He writes: “Something that is not dependent on chance or human choice, but which has to be the case,” such as “the proposition that the … [Read more...]

C. S. Lewis Would Not Have Been an Intelligent Design Advocate

(HT: Dangerous Idea) That's the conclusion drawn by Asbury University philosopher Michael L. Peterson. You can read Professor Peterson's essay here. I think Peterson is correct, for many of the same reasons I offer in my analysis of ID. (See my blog post here) … [Read more...]

Offensive religious metaphor alert: ESPN does it on Easter Sunday

In discussing the collapse of the New York Knicks and today's upcoming playoff game against the Boston Celtics, Stephen A. Smith, over at ESPN.COM, writes: "No one's in the mood for crucifying the Knicks on Easter Sunday...." Can anyone imagine Smith saying this?: "Hedo Türkoğlu, despite the Magic's loss, is in no mood to raid the buffet at mid-day during Ramadan or burn a Koran with Pastor Terry Jones, his fellow Floridian."  Even the religiously tone deaf folks at ESPN would have heard … [Read more...]

Bob Dylan: “In the Garden”

Lyrics follow … [Read more...]


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