March 22, 2023
The conversation has not stopped, and it will continue. Here I do not mean to suggest any futility; these interventions helped many avoid error and come to see how faith can be intelligible. New discoveries will continue to create new urgencies to think anew about this relationship.
October 28, 2022
The figure of Galileo, whispering his conviction of heliocentrism in a theocratic Italian court, represents in the minds of many modern people their image of an intrinsic conflict between faith and science, dogma and free enquiry, medieval justice and modern values. As numerous scholars have shown, however, the Galileo trial was largely an anomaly in the history of Catholicism. In the early modern period, it was far more common for religious institutions, especially the Catholic Church, to embrace with zeal the latest scientific discoveries, which by and large confirmed their worldview.
October 19, 2022
Perhaps it is obvious, but I believe that we need to know each other’s histories. American Catholics can be pretty tribal—within neighborhoods, parishes, and ethnic communities. But I think that we can benefit from the experiences of others, no matter our backgrounds.
September 21, 2022
Sociologists like Margaret Archer have commented on the lack of analytical terms for designating the components of culture. Yet Dawson’s approach to culture provides those terms. They help to coordinate research in terms of the big picture. These elements of culture prevent scholars from neglecting important data sets or spiritual influences.
September 14, 2022
For many of us, September means the end of vacations and the start of the school year. While it’s sad to say goodbye to our beach reads, we’re excited to jump back into routine with our commute books and bedtime stories. Here are the books keeping us company as we settle into our schedules, new and old.
August 10, 2022
The University of Dayton controversy continued to escalate because the faculty did not discuss things in a civil manner. When people hold deeply-felt concerns on moral issues, they are willing to do things that seem unimaginable to others, such as report their fellow faculty to the archbishop.
July 6, 2022
In his best moments, Augustine persistently reminds us that the sacraments are in some sense objectively effective apart from or prior to us, the recipients, at least insofar as we don’t generate their saving grace. Yet he also shows why and how the sacraments are always brought to their full effect when we subjectively receive that grace and act on it in our lived experience.
May 5, 2022
Because of their own political and religious environment, England and his colleagues saw the shifting conditions in the world as advantageous to the Catholic Church; the Irish church, at least, had gained greater freedom because of the eighteenth-century revolutions. He and his colleagues were accustomed to speaking of change, reform, adaptation, republicanism, and democracy as beneficial to the Catholic Church.
April 13, 2022
The question in my mind that needed to be asked was not just whether they “succeeded” in their goals or not by getting their Catholic voices heard, and their positions engaged. It was moreso what “success” might have meant in the first place.
April 6, 2022
A Catholic engagement in relationship with the Jewish people is rooted in a context. For many in the Church today that context is forged in Europe in the mid-twentieth century. What do Christian-Jewish relations look like from the perspective of a Catholic theologian who is a Palestinian Arab? How does that perspective impact how Catholic theology might see the Land of Israel and the State of Israel?