Distinctly Catholic

Silk Defends Francis' Intellectual Cred


Mark Silk at RNS beat me to the punch of answering a column by Phil Lawler in which Lawler disparaged Papa Francesco's intellect compared to that of his two predecessors. I do think it is fair to say that the Roman Church has not had a pontiff with Benedict's theological intellect in a very long time, perhaps ever. But, Papa Francesco is certainly a match for John Paul II and both men deserve to be considered intellectuals.

Who supports same-sex marriage?


Robert Jones and Daniel Cox write over at Monkey Cage on the changing composition of those who support same-sex marriage. Jones and Cox are two of the best researchers on the attitudes of believers in the business, and they continually ask questions that do not seem to occur to other polling outfits but are critical to understanding how Americans view contentious issues.

Pope Francis & The Modern Economy


Yesterday, I thought I did a fairly decent job taking on the economic worldview lodged at the Acton Institute in my review of Samuel Gregg’s book “Becoming Europe.” Alas, I have been upstaged, and not just a little, by Pope Francis who delivered some powerful remarks on economics in an audience where he was receiving new ambassadors. You can find the full text of his remarks here.


The Devil & Pope Francis


At Aleteia, Sandro Magister writes on Pope Francis' frequent mention of the devil. These comments by the new pope seem like a throwback to medieval thinking to some, but as Magister notes, they reflect just how rooted Francis' spirituality is in the Scripture. Jesus talked a lot about the devil and even if most moderns pass over those references, they are still there, in the Word of God, trying to tell us something.

Review: Becoming Europe


Samuel Gregg’s new book, Becoming Europe: Economic Decline, Culture and How America Can Avoid a European Future, is a bad book. Its principal shortcomings are its tendentious portrayal of the values that animate those of us who champion the modern welfare state, its simplistic and often distorted reading of events and, most especially damning in a book that aims to make an argument, Gregg makes more assertions than arguments as he sets forth this manifesto for the free market. And, to be clear, while Mr.

Vermont Backs Assisted Suicide


Bad news from the Green Mountain State. The state of Vermont passed a law permitting physician assisted suicide, and the governor is expected to sign it. You will recall that last year, voters in Massachusetts narrowly rejected a similar proposal. The new law in Vermont will doubtlessly embolden activists to try their luck in other states such as Connecticut or New Hampshire or even New York.


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In This Issue

June 16-29, 2017