Anne-Theism

Memnoch The Devil Anne Rice Random House, 1995 Book Review Somewhere near the end of Memnoch The Devil, Anne Rice’s latest best-selling novel, after you have read about 280 pages that average about a blasphemy per page, you read this: “‘Lestat,’ He said, His voice so feeble and torn I could scarce hear it. ‘You want to taste it, don’t…

Everybody’s Counting Kids (But Something Doesn’t Add Up)

Call me too sensitive, but since we had our fourth child last August, my wife and I have been getting lots of unsolicited feedback on our family size. People who wouldn’t dare the affrontery of asking what I make in a year, or what our house is worth, feel emboldened to preach to us the gospel of better living through…

King of the Queers

By the time the curtain fell on opening night at the Manhattan Theater Club, it was clear that the tempest surrounding Terrence McNally’s “Corpus Christi” amounted to much ado about nothing. McNally is a Tony Award winner whose works often explore gay themes. But the critics seem to agree that this shallow self-portrait of the artist as a homosexual Christ-figure…

Moses The Revolutionary

Of God and Gods: Egypt, Israel, and the Rise of Monotheism Jan Assmann Madison: University of Wisconsin, 2008 Book Review The study of ancient religions has never been more urgent. In the first decade of a century so far defined by a clash of civilizations, questions about monotheism and violence, truth and tolerance, conscience and coercion, religion and the state,…

What Are We Working For?

All You Who Labor: Work and the Sanctification of Daily Life Cardinal Stefan Wyszynski Sophia Institute Press, 1994 Book Review Homo nascitur ad laboreum, et avis ad volatum. “Man was born to work, like the bird was born to fly” (Job 5:7). Though written in the Latin Bible, these words could describe our work-obsessed society—with its hourly updates on the…

A Life Hidden With Christ

On a chill evening, March 5, 1897, an ex–monk entered Nazareth. He had walked about 125 miles in little more than a week since climbing off a steamer in Jaffa, sleeping in fields and begging bread along the way. Charles de Foucauld had come to Nazareth to live the same obscure life of poverty, manual labor, and prayer that Jesus…

Finding Joy in The Darkest Night

It had been a long day, and Father Andrew M. Greeley was frustrated and grouchy as he climbed into a hot cab with Mother Teresa. More than 30 years later, he still remembered their hour–long ride through southern Ohio. “She was the happiest human being I had ever met,” he recalled when she died in 1997. Mother Teresa, now known…

He Sang of The Hidden God

Pope John Paul II was a priest with a poet’s soul. True, some of his predecessors wrote poems and plays. The verses of Damasus (366-384) are inscribed on the walls of the catacombs. Before Pius II (1458-1464) became a priest, he was court poet to Emperor Frederick III, writing everything from erotic love lyrics to a Latin verse comedy. Only…

Her Saving Grace

By David Scott In November 1848, the specter of revolution sweeping through Europe finally reached Rome. On Nov. 15, extremists executed Pellegrino Rossi, the newly named governor of the Papal States. Angry mobs roamed the streets, surrounding the papal palace on the Quirinal Hill. Besieged for nine days, Blessed Pope Pius IX finally fled under cover of night, disguised as…