Fr. Dwight Longenecker

Fr. Longenecker’s autobiography/conversion story, There and Back Again, is published by Ignatius Press. Follow his popular blog, browse his books, and be in touch at

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recent articles

Peter Sonski: the Other Catholic Candidate

The presidential candidate of the American Solidarity Party was born into a blue-collar Catholic family and went on to work in agriculture, insurance, journalism, and public relations.

Must Christmas Be Magical?

In making Christmas the most magical time of the year, it feels like our sad, post-Christian culture is clinging, like a lost child with a tattered teddy bear, to some sort of nostalgic longing for the supernatural.

The Theology of Thanksgiving

When we celebrate the Thanksgiving Meal of the Eucharist, we thank God for our deliverance from the bondage of sin and give thanks for Christ the Passover Lamb who was slain.


Facing the Atheism All Around Us

I do not think of myself as a visionary or a prophet. Indeed, I am dubious of such phenomena. I’d prefer to call my experience a “mental image” or a “dream image.” It came to me in that in-between state when I was not sure if I was praying or dozing. But it really doesn’t … Read more

reverent Mass

Irrelevant Mass or Reverent Mass?

The present crisis in the Catholic Church might be seen as the last hurrah of the spirit of Vatican II. If rumors are to be believed, Pope Francis is preparing new restrictions on the celebration of the Traditional Latin Mass. This combined with the dissent being fomented by the German Catholics and widespread modernism and … Read more

Frs. Altman and Martin

The Tale of Two Fr. Jameses

With the news that conservative priest Fr. James Altman has been asked by his bishop to resign, one is faced with the contrast between Fr. James Altman and another controversial priest, Fr. James Martin, SJ. Both priests have somewhat of a prophetic voice in the Church—Fr. Altman from the conservative side and Fr. Martin from … Read more

Archbishop Cordileone

From the Lion’s Heart

As many have observed, the Archbishop of San Francisco (Salvatore Cordileone) is lion-hearted. His namesake, King Richard, was a famous crusader, and with Before I Formed You in the Womb, his recent pastoral letter on abortion and Catholics in public office, Archbishop Cordileone steps forward as a prominent voice in our culture wars. Some Catholics … Read more


Swimming Across the Riptide: The Benedict Option in Action

Rod Dreher’s book The Benedict Option advocates a simple response to modernity: retreat, re-arm, and renew. Basing his battle plan on that of the sixth century founder of Western monasticism, Dreher argued that, just as St. Benedict abandoned the decadence of a declining Roman Empire, so Christians today should respond to a society crumbling into … Read more

Hans Küng

King Küng Meets God(zilla)

Last week, Hans Küng, the king of the dissident German Catholic theologians, met his maker. At the time, I tweeted, “King Küng meets God-zilla.” In doing so, I had no intention of comparing either Hans Küng to a giant gorilla nor the Almighty to a giant lizard. It just seemed too juicy a dad-joke to … Read more


The Cross and Cancel Culture

When faced with Christian slogans like “Jesus died to save you from your sins” or liturgical commonplaces like “Behold the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world” the 21st century twenty-something with virtually no understanding of Christianity might well ask, “What does the execution of a criminal two thousand years ago … Read more


The Return of Segregation?

I have to admit it: I’m an old white guy. In fact, I am a privileged old white guy. To be honest, I am a very privileged old white guy. I grew up in a middle class home with a successful businessman for a father. My mom was a “homemaker.” Mom and Dad both considered … Read more

Mammon’s Grip on the Catholic Church

As the story goes, Mother Teresa was offered a million dollars by a Catholic with deep pockets, and Mother took the check, gave him a hug, and said she’d be able to open five new orphanages. The millionaire drew back, cleared his throat, and said, “That sounds real fine Mother Teresa, but you don’t seem … Read more

On Prophets and Pearl-Clutchers

The bishop of La Crosse, Wisconsin, is clutching his pearls over the popular video made by Father James Altman, one of his priests. For those who have not read the weather report on this particular tempest in a teapot, Father Altman has voiced his opinion that Catholics cannot vote for Joe Biden. He also had … Read more

Why Bother Going to Mass?

When I was working as a chaplain at a Catholic high school, the parents of a ninth-grade boy made an appointment to see me. Jimmy was a bright, good-looking and popular student from a respectable Presbyterian family. Mother and father turned up on time, neatly dressed, and well-mannered. After some small talk, Jimmy’s mother expressed … Read more

Blacks’ Lives Matter. But So Does the Truth

Everyone can say “the lives of blacks matter,” but you might decline to say “Black Lives Matter.” Here’s why: it’s obvious that the lives of black people matter, but the Black Lives Matter movement is a political movement with a clear agenda and an ideology that goes beyond affirming the sacredness of the lives of … Read more

Give Me Attila the Hun

Give me Attila the Hun over our present-day homegrown barbarians. There was something honest about the old-fashioned barbarians. Whether they were the Huns or the Vikings, or the Vandals or the Visigoths, there was something honest about them. They made no bones about it: they were going to sweep down, burn your village, rape your … Read more

It’s Time to Re-Mythologize the Gospel

When I was a theology student at Oxford in the early 1980s, I came across a collection of essays that had come out a few years earlier. The book was called The Myth of God Incarnate. A number of the authors were Oxford theologians, some of whom I studied under. The editor, John Hick, summed … Read more

On Covid and the Grimpen

The pandemic has suddenly thrown our affluent and seemingly secure and safe lives into a tailspin. In fact, the security and certainty was always an illusion, and in East Coker T.S. Eliot ponders life’s shifting uncertainty: And every moment is a new and shocking Valuation of all we have been. We are only undeceived Of … Read more

The Gnostic Feminism of Phyllis Zagano

One of the most high-ranking feminists in the Catholic Church is Phyllis Zagano, the well-known advocate for the ordination of women to the diaconate. A member of the papal commission to examine the historical precedents of deaconesses, Zagano has researched the subject extensively and is the author of many learned articles and several books. Phyllis … Read more

When the Benedict Option is the Only Option

Much has been written about Rod Dreher’s Benedict Option. It has been portrayed as not so much an option as an opting out. Critics have said it is a call to run away from the public square, an escape, an indefensible retreat, and an admission of defeat. The Benedict Option is thought to be a … Read more

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