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Viva Cristo Rey!

In the 1920s, when the United States had a quasi-Stalinist regime on its southern border, “Viva Cristo Rey!” was the defiant battle cry of the Cristeros who fought the radically secular Mexican

The Crèche and the Gap

For the past decade or so, I’ve been assembling a mid-sized Judean village of Fontanini crèche figures, including artisans, herders (with sheep), farmers (with chickens and an ahistorical turkey), vintners,

Books for Christmas

It’s been a good year for publishing—at least in the sense of a lot of good books getting published—so here are some for the readers on your Christmas gift list

A Meditation on “Maranatha”

Happy (real) new year: the beginning of a new year of grace, which began December 3 with the First Sunday of Advent. “The holidays” so overwhelm our senses each December

What’s Changed Since Humanae Vitae?

Throughout this academic year, Rome’s Pontifical Gregorian University is hosting a series of lectures, billed as the “first interdisciplinary” study to mark the fiftieth anniversary of Blessed Paul VI’s encyclical Humanae

A Museum for Which to be Thankful

On September 29, 1952, the publication of the complete Revised Standard Version of the Bible was celebrated at the National Guard Armory in Washington, D.C., and the principal speaker was

As the Bard Might Say…

Four centuries after his death, Shakespeare remains a peerless playwright because of his remarkable insight into the human condition. Love, ambition, fear, guilt, nobility, pomposity, patriotism, absurdity, sheer wickedness—you name

“You Have to Decide.”

In writing Lessons in Hope: My Unexpected Life with St. John Paul II, one of my secondary intentions was to bury two urban legends: that John Paul II asked me to

Grit, Gus, and Glory

Of the “Original Seven” Mercury astronauts, Gus Grissom, the runt of the litter, has also gotten the shortest shrift in the public mind. Regarded at the time of his death

Which Reformation? What Reform?

Despite the formulation you’ll hear before and after the October 31 quincentenary of Luther’s Ninety-Five Theses, there was no single “Reformation” to which the Catholic “Counter-Reformation” was the similarly univocal

A Memoir I Never Expected to Write

Purchase your copy of LESSONS IN HOPE here! When the second volume of my John Paul II biography, The End and the Beginning, was published in 2010, I thought I was

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