More than compassion needed for Europe’s refugees

“Irrespective of the political forces at play,” says Trey Dimsdale in this week’s Acton Commentary, “there is no arguing with the fact that such a large number of displaced immigrants presents a monumental humanitarian crisis in which survival becomes the initial, but not final, concern.” Prior to 2014, fewer than 300,000 refugees and migrants arrived in the European Union each year. Continue Reading...

Commentary: The joy of spring

This week’s Acton Commentary is a meditation by the Dutch theologian Abraham Kuyper (1837-1920), reflecting on the significance of spring for our natural and spiritual lives. “So that bread may come forth from the earth” takes its point of departure from the lines of Psalm 104: “He causeth the grass to grow for the cattle, and herbs for the service of man: that he may bring forth bread out of the earth.” Pieces like this show another side of Kuyper than those that are often emphasized. Continue Reading...

Why it’s high time to bury Lenin

In an article published today at The American Spectator, Acton Senior Editor Rev. Ben Johnson comments on the solemn centenary of the Russian communist revolutionary Vladimir Lenin’s ascendancy to power. Continue Reading...

Is foreign aid a sacred cow?

Last week a group of 106 faith leaders have collaborated on a letter they have signed and sent to the Democrat and Republican leadership of both houses of Congress. In this week’s Acton Commentary, Victor V. Continue Reading...

5 ways the church can help the poor

“My community includes people who are both materially poor and ‘poor in spirit’,” says Zachary Ritvalsky in this week’s Acton Commentary. “However, what exactly does it mean to say that people are ‘poor in spirit’?” To be “poor in spirit” is not the same as being economically poor, yet both kinds of poverty matter, and the church must address both. Continue Reading...

Defending the bourgeois virtues

In this week’s Acton Commentary, “The middle class in an age of inequality,” I wonder who will defend the bourgeois virtues, if anyone will “speak out in praise of mediocrity, stability, and predictability.” Deirdre McCloskey has spent a great deal of time exploring and extolling the bourgeois virtues. Continue Reading...

The Michael Novak book that changed reality

From a 2017 vantage point, it’s easy to forget just how radical this book was, says Samuel Gregg in this week’s Acton Commentary. In penning the Spirit of Democratic Capitalism, Novak was the first theologian to really make an in-depth moral, cultural, and political case for the market economy in a systematic way. Continue Reading...

Lord Acton’s judgment on pope and king

“Acton’s ideal of the historian as judge, as the upholder of the moral standard, is the most noble ideal ever proposed for the historian,” says Josef L. Altholz in this week’s Acton Commentary, “and it is an ideal that has been rejected, perhaps with grudging respect, by all historians, including myself.” We workaday historians can have no higher ideal than Acton’s second choice, impartiality or objectivity. Continue Reading...