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An Angry Jesus for Our Times?

Charlottesville, VA. In today’s political climate, everything is taking on a hostile and confrontational tone. We are increasingly alienated, unable and unwilling to understand and respect one another anymore. Religious leaders, including priests like me, tend to say that we need to go back to the religious roots of respect, and in particular, to be and do as Jesus did, the great peacemaker, friend of the poor, friend of all.

Yes, that the nice Jesus is too easy a model. Jesus was also an angry man. This came home to me on...

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Caesar's Coin: The Very Little We Owe Donald Trump

Charlottesville, VA. I’ve been thinking about religion and politics, church and state, this week, and not just because the unending news from Washington forces people of faith to think about where their loyalties should be, given the current state of our government. Yes, I am one of those who cannot understand how some Christians find it necessary to support a man whose personal life and personal and political values are so distant from Christian faith and morals; conversely, I admire Christians like Bree Newsome, who in the...

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On Edge in Charlottesville

Charlottesville, VA. As readers of my first post may recall, I am spending much of this semester at the University of Virginia, in Charlottesville, where I will be giving lectures several weeks from now. I have been here over a month, but am still making sense of where I am.

October 6, just a few days ago, marked two...

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On the Inner Edge

Charlottesville, VA. This is the first in a new series of opinion pieces I will post at this new site, so allow me to introduce myself.

I have been a Jesuit (for nearly 50 years), Catholic priest (for nearly 40 years), and a professor at Harvard Divinity School (now in my 13th year, after 21 years at Boston College). I am an expert on certain texts and traditions of Hindu India, particularly in the Sanskrit and Tamil languages, on certain strands of Jesuit...

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What Catholics can learn from a Hindu saint on his 1,000th anniversary

Cambridge, Ma. I am the kind of person who remembers anniversaries, and 2016 and 2017 offer a few worth remembering. This academic year marks the 200th anniversary of Harvard Divinity School. And, in 2017, it is the 500th anniversary of the Reformation, culminating on Oct. 31, 2017, the date when by tradition Martin Luther posted...

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