James Finn

James Finn is author of Protest: Pacifism and Politics, a study of the Vietnam peace movement, and, when Crisis was originally published in 1982, he was editor of Freedom at Issue, the bimonthly journal of Freedom House.

recent articles

The Future of Vatican II

What has the Second Vatican Council wrought? This question was asked almost as soon as Vatican II concluded its work in 1965. It remains a question. Given the perspective provided by the distance of thirty years, what now can be said? No response can give a full measure of the impact of the Council without … Read more

Crises, Tidings & Revelations: A Priest for All Seasons

Among the priests I’ve known and admired for many years one man has remained for me a reference point as steady as the north star, a standard that has not varied during a number of turbulent decades. At one point in his active career, I was told that he probably knew personally more American priests … Read more

Observations: Beyond East and West

Sollicitudo Rei Socialis is a profound, potentially fructifying addition to the Church’s teaching on “the social question.” The encyclical extends that teaching to encompass the full development of peoples and the political, economic, and cultural conditions that help or impede their development. In large and expansive terms it touches on the relation of North to … Read more

Reflections on John Paul II in America: The New Provincials

To Those Who Believe in the Superiority of the Present Cultural Epoch, the Pope is a Stumbling Block The Pope has come, the pope has gone, but we haven’t heard the last of him. And as we assimilate the trip and the many separate messages he delivered, the full import of his visit will over … Read more

Preparing for the Synod on the Laity

Amid the sharp, even acrimonious, differences that have shaken the Catholic Church in the last several decades, one observation seems to invite general agreement: the role of the laity will become increasingly important. Alas, the general agreement stops almost right there, and differences about what the role should be take over. As distinctions between functions … Read more

Curran, Dissent, & Rome: A Symposium

The case of Charles Curran, as it has come to be called, deserves all the considered attention that it can receive. The Sacred Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith in Rome has demanded that Father Charles Curran “retract those positions [he has publicly stated] which violate the conditions necessary for a professor to be … Read more

The Christian Soldier

Like those of a number of people in my infantry outfit, my dogtags were stamped with a capital C. C for Catholic. The dogtags of others were stamped J (Jewish) or P (Protestant). There were more stamped with P, not only because there were more Protestants in the outfit, but because anyone who did not … Read more

Of Motes and Beans and Grenada

On October 25, U.S. military troops landed in Grenada. On October 26 — and still continuing — that action was subjected to almost instant criticism by a host of commentators. The range of criticism was wide — much wider than it was deep. Not surprisingly, the media had a word hemorrhage because they were excluded … Read more

Catholics and the Peace Movement

ABOUT CATHOLICS and the Peace movement there is good news and bad news. The good news is that Catholics are a noticeable presence in the Peace Movement. They are no longer on the fringe or regarded as ininpical and exotic converts to the cause. The bad news is that they have adopted, or discovered for themselves, some of the worst faults … Read more

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