Brian Flanagan is associate professor of theology at Marymount University in Arlington, Virginia. He is the author of Stumbling in Holiness: Sin and Sanctity in the Church and the president-elect of the College Theology Society.

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In defense of the Vatican's 'back to the future' Nativity scene

Commentary: The Vatican's 2020 Nativity scene is drawing strong reactions, but the figures are simple and clear; it's not a coincidence that these pieces date from 1965 to 1975, from the immediate post-conciliar period.


'New Ultramontanists': Why do some Catholics fear change?

Commentary: There are striking parallels between the ultramontanist thinkers and authors of the 19th century — the century of Vatican I — and those I would name the "new ultramontanists" of today.


In 'Gaudete et Exsultate,' Francis calls us on journey of 'small holiness'

Commentary: Like the Second Vatican Council itself, Pope Francis is most radical in being so traditional, in going back to the roots of our Christian tradition in his latest apostolic exhortation.