Fr. George Rutler

59538
“Expel the Wicked Person From Among You”

The stepbrother of William the Conqueror, Bishop Odo, was meticulous in observing canon law. Since a cleric was not allowed to “wield the sword,” he used a battle club. In the Bayeux Tapestry under the scene of him forcing his men into a hail of...

59472
Andrew Cuomo and the Massacre of Innocents

The mayor of a French town commissioned a statue of the rationalist Emile Zola and, intent on provocation, he ordered that the bronze for it be from the bells of a church. Similarly, Governor Andrew Cuomo chose to sign into law our nation’s most...

59338
The Cause of Christ is Ever in its Last Agony

The nineteenth-century churchman John Henry Newman has shaped many of my views and how to apply them. With the credit of a second miracle to his intercession, it is likely that he will be canonized in short order. Our culture as a whole is...

59136
Lowly Animals Were Among the First to Gaze Upon the Face of God

Christians in the Indian state of Kerala are about 20% of the population. An amateur film recorded there shows some workers struggling with a power shovel to rescue a baby elephant from a ditch. I do not know if they were Christians, Hindus,...

58949
Our True Home is in Heaven

A bishop condescendingly asked John Henry Newman, “Who are the laity?” To which the great saint, and, one hopes, future Doctor of the Church, replied that the Church would look foolish without them.  The same might be said of those who are...

58783
Jesus is Before All, and By Him All Things Consist

A mark of first-rate thinkers is their ability to make complex theories understandable. Conversely, muddled thinkers assume that obscurantism is profound. Consider, for instance, a comment made a few months ago by an Italian Jesuit and close...

58754
Saint Clement of Rome, Pray For Us

On the day after Thanksgiving, the Church rejoices in the intercessions of Pope Saint Clement of Rome. New Yorkers have a special reason to think of him, two millennia later.   Clement probably was made a bishop by Saint Peter himself and became...

58528
Now That the Hour is Come, My Fear is Fled

Some classical composers whose melodramatic quirks would have made life with them difficult, such as Beethoven, Wagner, Berlioz and Satie, have their opposites in such genial geniuses as Hayden, Mozart and, I would argue, Edward Elgar. Elgar was...

58482
Armies Collapse and Empires Crumble at the Feet of the Saints

There are those who would not let facts get in the way of theory, and such was the English philosopher Herbert Spencer who promoted the “survival of the fittest.” This “Social Darwinism” theorized that the weak and poor would gradually die out to...

58217
Where Do These Wars Between Yourselves First Start?

Abraham Lincoln won the election of 1860 with only 39.8 percent of the popular vote and was so loathed that he had to take a night train secretly into Washington for his inauguration. The Salem Advocate in his own state of Illinois editorialized:...