HOMILETICS. I was really joyful. Once again, the liturgical year had come full swing — we had returned to the Feast of the Transfiguration. After the readings, as we sat back in our pews, I looked forward with a sense of excitement to the homily to follow . . . This essay responds to my unfeigned disappointment. It is the homily I wish I had heard. Feast of the Transfiguration 08/06/2006 — A Homily

NEW AGE. If you enjoy a good who-done-it, the history of this essay in theology and the circumstances surrounding its publication might just be the thing you are looking for. The Enneagram and Catholic Personalism

APOLOGETICS. It has happened to everybody. A pair of missionaries from the Jehovah’s Witnesses or Seventh Day Adventists or some other group rings the doorbell, and they are brimming with enthusiasm at the prospect of converting you. Well, here is a twelve-step program that will speed their recovery — or else stop them in their tracks! Sola Scriptura: A Distinctly Unbiblical Notion

APOLOGETICS. Speaking of Seventh Day Adventists — they produce some pretty compelling arguments for keeping the Jewish custom of sabbath observance. They base the argument on their interpretation of Revelation 1:10. Among other claims they make, they say that the Catholic Church in 360 A. D. usurped God’s clear commandment and that the Pope is the culprit. It’s the Whore of Babylon’s diabolical plot to make the people of the world do wicked things. Their references are solid, and their argument is compelling. The only remaining question is: IS IT TRUE? Sabbath or Sunday?

APOLOGETICS. Most people you ask will say the Protestant Reformation began when Martin Luther nailed his 95 Theses to the door of the Castle Church in Wittenburg on October 31, 1517. Actually, from a Catholic viewpoint, Luther’s Theses are thoroughly conservative, and contain no central doctrines of what would in the future turn into the Lutheran Movement. The disputation at Pleissenburg Castle on the outskirts of 1519 Leipzig was the real watershed in Luther’s thinking, because it clearly marked off what came before from what came after. Before, Martin Luther was as Catholic as many Medieval theologians had been. Afterward, he was a Protestant. But had Father Martin really discovered truth? Pyrrhic Victory: The Disputation at Pleissenburg Castle

CATHOLIC SOCIAL TEACHING. This little essay is about AIDS and the tyranny wrought by scientistic mechanical reductionism in Sub-Saharan Africa. Health and behavioral sciences that are not ordered to the truth about God and man, that fail to affirm that “the Supreme Good and the moral good meet in truth: the truth about God, the Creator and Redeemer, and the truth about man, created and redeemed by Him,” risk transformation into tyranny. Dancing with Death: AIDS in Sub-Saharan Africa, Scientism, and the Primacy of Culture

ECCLESIOLOGY. The preceding essay on HIV/AIDS illustrates the twin principles of Catholic social teaching, subsidiarity and solidarity. Pope John Paul II has also developed and elaborated the principle of collaboration as the fruit of an extended and penetrating meditation on John 15:1-9 (“I AM the true vine and My Father is the vinedresser . . . ” and Matthew 20:1-16 (“For the kingdom of heaven is like a Householder who went out early in the morning to hire laborers for His vineyard . . . ”). The following essay is a syllogism that demonstrates the organic relationship that obtains between collaboration and communion, with a conclusion that shocked the superiors of the order. Delivered on the occasion of the Redemptorist Lay Collaborators’ Workshop of September 30, 2000: Collaboration and Communion

METAPHYSICS. This tongue-in-cheek essay, in the classic form of a Socratic dialogue, ties together some loose ends of Socrates’ thought. It turns out that Socrates was tantalizingly close to an exercise in true metaphysics, fully two generations before Aristotle’s brilliant work on the same subject. Doretokos: a Most Surprising Socratic Dialogue

OLD TESTAMENT STUDIES. The Semitic Concept of Sin

OLD TESTAMENT STUDIES. The Prophets in the Light of Personalism

OLD TESTAMENT STUDIES. The Prophets: A Synthetic Reflection