The National Catholic Review

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  • Billionaire brothers Charles and David Koch recently made headlines by pledging nearly $900 million to help elect candidates who support their libertarian strain of economic conservatism, but the industrialists are also nearly doubling their investment in the business school of Catholic University of America, which is overseen by the U.S. bishops.

    That’s despite the fact that many Catholics—including Pope Francis—say the kind of unregulated capitalism that the Kochs promote runs...

  • It was on January 30, 1882 that Franklin Delano Roosevelt, the 32nd President of the United States was born—and that was 133 years ago. It is hard to comprehend that a figure of modern American history can almost be counted in terms of centuries instead of years and in FDR’s case, almost two. FDR was a seminal personality of his time and despite one’s political leanings, whether Democrat or Republican, liberal or conservative, it cannot be denied that the Squire of Hyde Park had made quite...

  • This is the tenth entry in the Bible Junkies Online Commentary on the Acts of the Apostles. The first entry covered some of the major critical, technical and background issues that will concern us as we read through and comment on the Acts. The second post, found here, considered the prologue to the Acts of the...

  • My column in the current print edition of America (“The Downside of Devolution”) looks at the question of whether public welfare is best served by national or local government. Since press time, there have been a couple of interesting news items about this tension.

  • The children’s rhyme insists that “sticks and stone may break my bones but words will never hurt me.” Yet anyone who has comforted a teased child knows the emptiness of the adage. Words do have power. Our world is woven of words. 

  • In recognition of Catholic Schools Week, I thought I'd share a little bit of history from the schooling of Matteo Ricci, the great 16th century Italian Jesuit missionary.

    When Ricci was about ten, his father enrolled him at the newly founded Macerata Jesuit College in central Italy. According to R. Po-Chia Hsia's A Jesuit in the Forbidden City, this is what Ricci studied there:  

  • Nothing was expected of St. Francis de Sales when he was born on August 21, 1567. He was born prematurely, and as a child he was regarded as delicate and sickly. Yet, somehow, he survived and grew to adulthood. Contemporaries described him as a sturdy man, a pleasant man, a religious man. He was all of these—and more. He was a priest and he was a bishop but he was renowned above all for one thing: his gentleness.

  • The Orange County Government Center, in Goshen, New York, is facing the architectural equivalent of a lobotomy: an irreversible procedure that would erase its distinctive personality.

  • G. K. Chesterton once wrote a biography of St. Thomas Aquinas. Originally published in 1933, it was simply called St. Thomas Aquinas: “The Dumb Ox.” How’s that for a catchy book title? Years ago, when school was my primary occupation, I came across this appellation of the saint and was intrigued by it. Yes, St. Thomas Aquinas is the great philosopher and theologian; he is a Doctor of the Church. However, it was the human Thomas that interested me—and what I found was even more intriguing.

  • Pope Francis has decided that the public ceremony of investiture of the Pallium on Metropolitan Archbishops will henceforth take place in the prelates’ home dioceses and not in the Vatican as has been the case under recent pontiffs.