The writers Flannery O’Connor and Walker Percy, social activist Dorothy Day, and the Trappist monk Thomas Merton — all four shared a complex Catholic faith. Paul Elie takes us on a kind of literary pilgrimage through a Catholic imagination that still resonates in our time.
Auburn's Rural Studio in western Alabama draws architectural students into the design and construction of homes and public spaces in some of the poorest counties. They're creating beautiful and economical structures that are not only unique but nurture sustainability of the natural world as of human dignity.
The devastation of the Haiti earthquakes and the lack of infrastructure for responding to the disaster have deepened an ongoing debate over foreign aid, international development, and helping the poorest of the world's poor. Jacqueline Novogratz, whose Acumen Fund is reinventing that landscape with what it calls "patient capitalism," is charting a third way between investment for profit and aid for free.
Debra Dean Murphy recalls a New Testament story of Jesus and questions whether we in the U.S. have given appropriate attention to the vulnerable poor.
A statuette of the Virgin Mary in Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn. (photo: Michael O’Donnell/Flickr, licensed under Creative Commons)
Folks will donate to help one person in need more often than two. And when presented with those thousands or millions suffering? It's overwhelming and we do not act.