Madam, I’m Adam

by Fr. Patrick Henry Reardon Sometimes there is no good news unless you search for it. I found some recently, for instance, when I wondered if college students today are still obliged to purchase and—though I doubt they ever did—read Michael C. Howard’s Contemporary Cultural Anthropology. Well, it seems they aren’t. Howard’s miserable work evidently […]

When Perversion Was Replaced By Proper Order

by Fr. Patrick Henry Reardon No matter when we date the composition of the Book of Ruth, it was certainly not part of the canonical Scriptures until fairly late. We know this because its Hebrew text is found in the third section of the TaNaK. It is very likely that the Septuagint translators moved it […]

What Paul Received and Handed On

by Fr. Patrick Henry Reardon Inasmuch as the letters of St Paul are apparently the earliest writings in the New Testament, he is commonly—and not inappropriately—thought of as the Church’s earliest theologian. This persuasion, nonetheless, should not be taken to mean that the Church had no theology prior to Paul’s conversion. Indeed, on the very […]

The Once and Future Darkness

by Fr. Patrick Henry Reardon From the first page of Holy Writ, the reader is left with no doubt about the nature of the world and humanity’s place within it. These themes are made very plain. Perhaps it is less obvious that a certain polemical concern is active in the mind of the Hebrew author […]

The First Trial of David as King

by Fr. Patrick Henry Reardon When—apparently in the third century before Christ—the Sefer Shemuel was divided into 1st and 2nd Samuel, its editors found a more-than-satisfactory division point at the death of Saul. Thus, the first book ends with the Battle of Mount Gilboah, and the second begins with David who, learning of that battle, […]

Sunspots in Scripture

by Fr. Patrick Henry Reardon The account of Ananias and Sapphira is arguably the most frightening story in the New Testament. We are scarcely surprised by St. Luke’s comment that “great fear came upon all the Church and upon all who heard these things.” In Luke’s bright account of the grace of the Holy Spirit […]

The Subtle Unity of 25% of the New Testament

by Fr. Patrick Henry Reardon The intentional unity of Luke/Acts is more than sequential. It is also thematic, in the sense that both works carry the same images, ideas, and preoccupations. In Luke/Acts there is, as well, a more subtle kind of unity, of a sort different from merely thematic and more complex than merely […]

What Is Authentic Interior Worship?

by Fr. Patrick Henry Reardon Perhaps among the least appreciated, and seldom thought on, descriptions of Jesus our Lord is the one given by John the Baptist: “His winnowing shovel is in His hand, and He will thoroughly clean out His threshing floor; and gather His wheat into the barn; but He will burn up […]