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From the NOR Dossiers

Conversion Stories

Things Fall Apart. By Chinua Achebe.

LITERATURE MATTERS

Michael S. Rose

May 2020

Achebe centers on the clash of civilizations between his native Ibo culture and Christian missionaries who established colonial government in Nigeria.

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The Ideology at the Root of Our Moral Disorder

MEET SOCIOLOGICAL MAN

Clifford Staples

December 2019

In the sociological imagination, it is man who creates God. Once he frees himself from God, anything is possible, or at least appears to be.

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Exotic Seed, Sown Deep in the Persian Dust

Jason M. Morgan

November 2019

God leads us singly, according to our soul’s most intricate pathways, to the joy that we were born to know as unrepeatable individuals.

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The Final Journey of the Jesuit Martyrs of North America & the Birthplace of St. Catherine Tekakwitha

PRELUDES & POINTS — PART II

Richard Upsher Smith Jr.

July-August 2019

The missionaries' love enabled them to long for martyrdom for the salvation of souls.

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On the Trail of the Jesuit Martyrs of North America & St. Catherine Tekakwitha

PRELUDES & POINTS — PART I

Richard Upsher Smith Jr.

June 2019

Historians have to “get inside” their subjects if they are to understand and represent them well. 2,845 miles' worth of investigations are reported here.

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A Tree Grows in St. Louis

REVERT'S ROSTRUM

Casey Chalk

June 2019

A remarkable family and their little spiritual oasis in the Gateway to the West have become, as divine fate would have it, a gateway to Catholicism.

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On Being at Once Catholic & Chinese

Jason M. Morgan

June 2019

How much of Chinese daily and intellectual life, so utterly foreign to men from both Athens and Jerusalem, can be carried over into communion with Rome?

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Dale Vree: A Remembrance

A LIFE UNLIKE ANY OTHER

May 2019

Twelve writers offer recollections of Dale Vree in tribute to his mind, his character, and the impact he had on the American Catholic intellectual scene.

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Dale Vree, R.I.P.

EDITOR OF NEW OXFORD REVIEW FOR 31 YEARS

Pieter Vree

January-February 2019

With a heavy heart I announce the death of Dale Vree, my father and former editor of the NEW OXFORD REVIEW. He passed away peacefully on December 10.

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The Strange Magnetism of Virtual Fisticuffs

REVERT'S ROSTRUM

Casey Chalk

November 2018

What happens when a fairly obscure writer picks a fight with a Christian YouTube celebrity who has over 200,000 followers?

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An Extraordinary Educator's Enduring Legacy

Christopher Beiting

September 2018

A review by Christopher Beiting of Francis Bethel, O.S.B's book John Senior and the Restoration of Realism

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Saving Pop

FROM THE BLUE RIDGE MOUNTAINS TO THE BOSOM OF ABRAHAM

Casey Chalk

January-February 2018

At every step, what I wanted was for my grandfather to know and love Christ. What I expected that to look like changed and matured as I did.

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The Truth About Claude Newman

MIRACLES, MEDALS & AUDIOTAPE

Ralph Frasca

October 2015

The story of this repentant and reformed killer is an astounding tale of redemption and sacrifice that has inspired authors, playwrights, and filmmakers.

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Newman in Italy: From Tourist to Pilgrim

WALKING BAREFOOT TO ST. PETER'S

Clara Sarrocco

December 2014

Newman was both enchanted and perplexed by the new scenes and ceremonies related to the strange and exotic Catholic Church.

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The Whole House

LIVING IN THE YARD WON'T DO

David Mills

October 2014

The Catholic must, when he can, tell his Protestant friends that they should complete their faith by entering the Catholic Church.

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From Murderer to Monk

Anne Barbeau Gardiner

June 2013

Clayton requested a "formal tie to the monastery" while in jail. He said he was already leading a monastic life and was eager for it to be embraced by the Church.

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The Forgotten Martyr

JOSEPH CHIHWATENHA, HURON CATHOLIC

Clement Anthony Mulloy

December 2012

Joseph Chihwatenha was a convert of the Huron tribe who helped the Jesuits and became the cornerstone of the emerging Huron Church.

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Off the Beaten Path

GUEST COLUMN

Ray Cavanaugh

May 2012

Kerouac said, “I am not ashamed to wear the crucifix of my Lord. It is because I am Beat, that is, I believe in beatitude and that God so loved the world that he gave his own begotten son to it.”

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From the Thames to the Tiber

Anne Barbeau Gardiner

September 2011

Many eminent converts flocked to the Church precisely because she is an authoritative, unswerving guide on morality.

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The Extraordinary Ordinariate
January-February 2011

In England, with the establishment of the or­dinariate, the effects of Pope Benedict's 2010 visit would be felt in concrete ways for years to come.

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The Rhone to the Thames to the Tiber

EVANGELICAL, EPISCOPALIAN, CATHOLIC

Taylor Marshall

January-February 2011

I came to see that the Anglican schism of the sixteenth century, and the Protestant Reformation in general, did not reflect the original trajectory of the New Testament.

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Chesterton's Journey to Orthodoxy

Anne Barbeau Gardiner

November 2010

It’s hard to believe, but Chesterton was raised a Unitarian and, in 1896, at age 22, still didn’t believe in the divinity of Jesus Christ.

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The Anatomy of Conversion

FROM DEBATE TO DISCOVERY

David Mills

April 2010

Becoming a Catholic is very much like a marriage, not least in the fact that you do not really know what you are getting into until you are in it.

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My (Somewhat Crooked) Path to the Monastery

CALL OF THE WILD

Abbot Joseph

March 2010

The Holy Spirit was urging me to take up my cross and follow Jesus into this blessed wilderness where alone I would find my salvation.

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Lifeboats on the Tiber
December 2009

Anglican prelates are already dropping hints that they are seriously considering taking up Pope Benedict's offer to help them across the Tiber.

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Liturgical Majesty & Solemnity

EDITORIAL

Dale Vree

May 2007

The pastor said the Holy Ghost would sometimes override his prepared sermon. Something extraordinary coming from that pulpit had hit me.

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From Protestantism to Catholicism, From the Novus Ordo Mass to the Tridentine Latin Mass

WAKING UP CATHOLIC

Michael Larson

May 2007

We step outside the world by way of something that stands apart from it. The Church ought to be that timeless and lucid entity by which we can see.

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Mohawk Virgin

Anne Barbeau Gardiner

May 2007

Allan Greer's Mohawk Saint is a learned work by a non-Catholic intended to challenge the prevailing view of Iroquois conversion to Christianity.

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Goodbye, Proud World, I’m Going Home

Anne Barbeau Gardiner

June 2005

Fourteen American women tell how they found their way to the Church via a need for Church authority and the discovery that holiness is a journey.

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The Lure of Beauty

Dale Vree

February 2004

Catholicism isn’t the only beautiful religion. There is also Eastern Orthodoxy, Anglicanism, Hinduism, and so forth. Why pick Catholicism over them?

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Not-So-Blessed Martin

Chrysostom Frank

April 2003

Converts from Lutheranism show how recognition that Luther's understanding and actions were flawed is certainly not an easy transition.

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Roman Fever

AN ILLNESS OR AN INVITATION?

David Mills

January 2003

When you have it you feel it is going to take you off to Rome (a sort of death for the Anglo-Catholic), but when you get better you easily forget it.

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Unspinning Newman

Anne Barbeau Gardiner

May 2002

Newman expressed negative views about a corporate reunion between Anglicans and Catholics; he valued real conversions more than such far-fetched schemes.

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St. Monica: Mother, Wife & Homemaker as Saint

THE QUINTESSENCE OF WOMANHOOD

Mitchell Kalpakgian

February 2002

Her character and life epitomize an ideal of sainthood essential for a modern world suffering a crisis of the family and the deconstruction of the home.

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Adventure Stories

John C. Chalberg

February 2001

A history of British “literary converts” is a story of spiritual inspiration over the course of the “age of unbelief” that constitutes the full run of the 20th century.

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My Journey From Catholicism to Eastern Orthodoxy & Back

RETURNING TO THE BEDSIDE OF MY SUFFERING MOTHER

Frank Kimball

November 2000

Many presume that Orthodoxy is merely Catholicism without a pope. This is not so.

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A Spiritual Journey from Jerusalem to Rome

GOODBYE JUDAISM, FAREWELL SCIENTISM, HELLO CATHOLICISM

Jeff Morrow

September 2000

My spiritual adventure, taken over the past dozen years, made stops in Shrewsbury to meet Darwin and in Wittenberg to see Luther.

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The Catholic Sensibility of Allen Tate

Anne Barbeau Gardiner

March 2000

Tate was a critic, poet, novelist, and intellectual of the first rank. Neglect of his work today is due in large part to his conversion to Catholicism.

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Conversion & the Psychology of Change

JESUS OF NAZARETH, MASTER PSYCHOLOGIST

Art & Larraine Bennett

November 1999

An encounter with Jesus turns out to be often paradoxical and surprising, uncomfortable in the moment yet ultimately curative.

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Converting the Pagans

John-Peter Pham

February 1999

What happened during the thousand years from Constantine to Jogaila that made Europe Christian? And how did it work?

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From Evangelical Anglican to Catholic

William J. Tighe

January 1999

Since all that was valid about the “Reformation protest” has been accepted by the Church, it is time for Protestants to “come home.”

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The Long Conversion of Oscar Wilde

"...THROUGH A BROKEN HEART MAY LORD CHRIST ENTER IN"

Andrew McCracken

September 1998

The wittiest man of his time, who considered himself a "violent Papist," believed that, of all religions, Catholicism is the one worth dying in.

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Why Attila the Hun Would Have Sacked a Protestant Rome

AN "INVISIBLE CHURCH" JUST DOESN'T HACK IT

Thomas Basil

June 1998

Structural unity is the only type of oneness that is complete, visible, and credible to a nonbelieving world.

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Confessions of a Cowardly Catholic

HEARING THE COCK CROW

Jeffrey Gordon

April 1998

The question of a theology teacher’s basic attitude toward the Church is a deep one, and crucial.

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Into Peter's Barque

NO LONGER MAKING UP MY OWN RELIGION

Thomas Storck

March 1998

As a high-church Episcopalian who adhered to the so-called branch theory of the Church, I considered that I was already a Catholic.

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Reflections of a Seven-Year-Old Catholic

FROM NEW DELHI TO ROME

Bobby Jindal

February 1998

I did not make progress toward a systematic religious faith until the awkward years of junior high school, when my best friend and I argued about the meaning of life.

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Does God Want Everybody to Be Catholic?

IS ONE RELIGION BASICALLY AS GOOD AS ANOTHER?

Francis E. King

January 1998

Some Catholics say we should leave "anonymous Christians" alone, that they have at least a partial grasp of the truth and that will be enough to bring them to salvation.

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My Road from Gender Feminism to Catholicism

FROM "FEELINGS" TO OBJECTIVE TRUTH

Kimberley Manning

September 1996

I became a Catholic because I sought objective Truth, a Truth that leaves both feminism and Protestantism in the dust.

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The New Surge of Converts to Rome from Protestantism

GETTING ORGANIZED

Kenneth J. Howell

March 1996

These pilgrims hear the authority of Christ speaking through the apostolic and Petrine ministry.

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On Growing Up Jewish & Becoming Catholic

WAS I GOING CRAZY?

Linda Dickey

March 1996

I assumed that I could secretly be Christian but came to realize that my spiritual life was too important to keep entirely a secret. So I told my husband.

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Building a Fine Fire in the Fireplace

Dale Vree

September 1995

The fireplace without the fire is empty ritual and mere churchianity. The fire without the fireplace is chaos and hairsplitting and division.

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Black Elk: Native American & Catholic

Christopher T. Dodson

April 1995

Black Elk repeatedly spoke of how the Lakota ways were "connected" to Catholicism, and how the spiritual experiences of the Lakota prepared them for Christ.

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The Lure of Catholicism

MERTON'S GENERATION & OUR OWN

Avery Dulles

March 1995

People turn to the Catholic Church not so much because they are drawn by its beauty (though they sometimes are) as because they cherish truth.

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Does It Take an Immigrant to Explain It to the Natives?

Dale Vree

July-August 1994

Scott asked a theolo­gian: "What for you is the pillar and foundation of truth?" Answer: "The Bible, of course!" Scott continued, "Then why does the Bible say in 1 Timothy 3:15 that the Church is the pillar and foundation of truth?"

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The Drama of the Oxford Movement

David Denton

April 1994

John Henry Newman, Rob­ert and Henry Wilberforce, and Henry Manning came to realize that their struggle was nothing less than the eternal question of "whom shall ye serve?"

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A Good Friday Convert

Guest Column

Rawley Myers

April 1992

Clare Boothe Luce wrote that most converts, like herself, "enter God's kingdom through the gates of pain."

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Orestes Explains It All for You

David Hartman

March 1992

Brownson certainly didn’t become a Catholic in 1844 because it was a socially estimable thing to do.

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Not Love in the Shallows

David Hartman

December 1991

Newman was a good man before he became a Roman Catholic; his goodness motivated his conversion, and the conversion inspirited his goodness.

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Discovering Catholicism

GUEST COLUMN

James Prothero

March 1990

Being an Anglican was like living with a woman out of wedlock: It had the advantages of marriage with none of the commitment and discipline.

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An Odd Couple: Galbraith & Waugh

CHRIST AND NEIGHBOR

John C. Cort

April 1989

Although Waugh's opinions on almost every subject, including religion, appalled him, Galbraith could not stop himself from loving Waugh's style.

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On Ecumenism & the Amazing Unity of Catholics

GUEST COLUMN

Paul van K. Thomson

November 1988

The Church uses theological disputes to teach her doctrine, as controversy raises fundamental issues.

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My Labyrinthine Quest for a Foundation on Which to Stand

THE PEARL OF GREAT PRICE: THE CHURCH

Dan O'Neill

May 1988

My 20-year smorgas­bord of denominational affiliations, which I had al­ways regarded as a rich blessing in plurality, became a millstone around my neck.

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Evelyn Waugh & ‘The Bright Young Things’

James J. Thompson Jr.

May 1988

Those who know Waugh on­ly through his novels might be surprised to learn that he entered the Church as early as 1930.

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Heading Home to Love, Suffering, and Mercy

Raymond T. Gawronski, S.J.

April 1988

Bozell's conserv­atism was no laissez-faire capital­ism, nor the tawdry conservatism of yuppiedom. Rather, his thought was rooted in reflection on the nature of being.

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The New Catholic: Quo Vadis?

L. Brent Bozell

March 1988

Converts' stories of their pasts would be enhanced by explicit avowals of where the Holy Spirit seems to be pointing them.

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Lay Vocation

GUEST COLUMN

Steffen Richards

December 1987

Early in my life I boasted: "The Catholic Church will never get me, because I'm too smart" (to get caught). Now look at me: I live and breathe the Catholic faith.

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Discovering the Church in Harvard Yard

A "POSITIVELY BIZARRE" CONVERSION

John C. Cort

November 1987

My father wrote an angry letter to the Dean of Harvard and told me that if I insisted on being received into the Church he would insist on withdrawing me from Harvard.

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Eating My Words: From Campus Crusade for Christ to Eastern Orthodoxy

GUEST COLUMN

Peter E. Gillquist

May 1987

We studied the issues in both Scripture and history and came to the conclusion that the East was correct on both the papacy and the filioque.

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In the Footsteps of John Henry Newman

Dale Vree

May 1987

Authentic authority, universality, and a firm theological grounding for social action -- these are the overarching factors that lead to Rome.

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Gracious Sensibility, Ruthless Self-Examination

Thomas W. Case

January-February 1987

Here is a conversion story that talks about how you join the Church seeking a kind of haven and then all hell breaks loose.

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Modern Martyrs

James G. Hanink

September 1986

The drama of martyrdom, for both Edith Stein — philosopher, convert, Carmelite — and Jerzy Popieluszko — priest and patriot — commands our attention.

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The Pilgrimage of a Former “Yuppie”

DRAWN TO THE SACRAMENTAL MYSTERIES

Peter K. Weiskel

June 1986

“Catholic” means “including everybody.” Catholicism is both a sanctuary for adoration and contemplation, and an animator of political and social reconstruction.

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A Wink of Heaven

MY STORMY ROAD…TO ROME

James J. Thompson Jr.

June 1985

Before answering the question, “Why Rome?” I must respond to another: “Why not Takoma Park?” (Takoma Park, Maryland, is the world headquarters of Seventh-Day Adventism.)

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Beyond Fundamentalism & Cultural Captivity

REORIENTING EVANGELICAL PROTESTANTISM

Richard V. Pierard

May 1985

The blossoming of Christian Rightist organiza­tions in the mid- and late 1960s made me increas­ingly nervous about the injurious effect of politi­cal conservatism on evangelicalism.

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The Gift of Thomas Merton

HARVARD DIARY

Robert Coles

April 1985

Merton was a constantly changing person, and years in the monastery did nothing to stop that process, for all the enclosing, demanding steadiness of the monastic routine.

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Fleeing from the Whore of Babylon

GROWING UP “ANTI-CATHOLIC”

James J. Thompson Jr.

September 1984

Flesh-and-blood Cath­olics I met proved to be generous and kind people who had no desire to gobble up little Prot­estant boys.

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Speaking Heart To Heart

EDITORIAL

Dale Vree

April 1984

We aspire to no exclusivist, triumphalist, inquisitorial, or truculent “Catholicism.” We will continue to be ecumenical in spirit and aspiration, a meeting ground for Christians.

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My Pilgrimage

COMING HOME TO THE CHURCH

Juli Loesch

November 1983

When the Mass was trans­lated into English, I noticed right away how often it says “Peace”: it’s repeated over and over again, like a heartbeat, clear through.

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On Becoming Roman Catholic

EDITORIAL

Dale Vree

October 1983

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Agreed Statement on the Separation of the NEW OXFORD REVIEW from the American Church Union

EDITORIAL

September 1983

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Edith Stein’s Cross

HARVARD DIARY

Robert Coles

September 1983

The proud and talented scholar threw herself gladly, ecstatically at His feet, He of the Cross, He whose Cross had become her cross.

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