Monday, October 24, 2005

"First Things": The Journal

My son recently gave me a gift subscription to "First Things," a publication of an organization called The Institute on Religion and Public Life in New York City, whose purpose is, "to advance a religiously informed public philosophy for the ordering of society." I am finding it very interesting, reading almost every article in each issue, which is unusual for me. The articles are scholarly but approachable for the well educated generalist. It is edited by Richard John Neuhaus and has a distinctly Catholic flavor which may put off some on-fire Protestants. Recent contributors include Antonin Scalia, Avery Cardinal Dulles and John Haldane.

One of the things I appreciate is that First Things now puts its past issues online in their entirety. The website includes a blog by Neuhaus. While I enjoy being able to refer readers to articles online, such publication clearly compromises their ability to sell subscriptions. I would recommend, as a way of materially supporting Christians engaging the culture, that those of us with means to do so patronize journals and artists by actually purchasing their work if we find it good and would like to see more of it.

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