A brief and belated tribute to Fr. Richard John Neuhaus, who died last January and who whose legacy in the journal First Things, which he founded, published, and edited, is one regular publication which I do not miss. Thankfully it is being carried on in similar style by his successors. Of course, his breakthrough to public awareness was his 1984 masterpiece, The Naked Public Square, which probably did more than any other work to restore the debate on the notion of the vitality of religious faith in informing the deliberation of public policy in America. In this and other pursuits, notably including his ecumenical work involving Catholics, Protestants, and Jews, he was totally dedicated to the proposition that religious faith and practice and their intersection with philosophical reason were critical to the sustenance of the American strain of the Enlightenment and, in fact, American exceptionalism. RIP.
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