Friday, January 27, 2012

Heresies and Heretics

On February 12, the Institute of Catholic Culture and its Director, Deacon Sabatino Carnazzo, proudly welcome Christopher Check, Executive Vice President of the Rockford Institute in Illinois to address one of the most troubling issues of the early church: heresies.

At the beginning of the third century, Constantine the Great consolidated power and began his reign over the Roman Empire. As the first Christian emperor, he declared freedom for Christianity and eventually made it the official religion of his empire. With this new freedom, however, came new challenges to the Faith and questions about the identity of Jesus Christ. Arius, a priest in Alexandria, Egypt began to teach a strange doctrine, claiming that Jesus was only a man and not divine. And while Arius gained many followers, one man stood up to this latest heresy, Athanasius the Great.

Christopher Check, holds a degree in English Literature from Rice University. His writings have appeared in, among others, Chronicles: A Magazine of American Culture, This Rock, Touchstone, The Wanderer, and the Chicago Tribune. He has addressed audiences at the University of London, the Pontifical Augustinian University in Rome, the Serbian Writers Union in Belgrade, the National Press Club, CatholicAnswers, the American Chesterton Society, Legatus, and Ave Maria University

Join Christopher Check and the Institute of Catholic Culture at 7:30 p.m. for this talk, held at St. Thomas a Becket Catholic Church, 1421 Wiehle Ave., Reston, Virginia.

All are welcome, including heretics. (Just kidding about the heretic part, wanted to see if you were paying attention.)

No reservations required. Free admission. For more information, please visit or call 540-635-7155.


Anonymous said...

I hope that Dr. Check is a better historian than you, Constantine was at the beginning of the fourth century, not the third. While he legalized Christianity, he did not make it the offiial religon of the empire--that was Theodosius, c. 384 I believe, and Arius was teaching his heresy several decades before Constantine and the Freedom of the Church. Moreover, heresy had a long history before Constatine--there was Sabellianism,Montanism, Marcionism, Docetism, patripassionism, and any number of others all before Constantine. And plenty afterwards. And Arianism, by the way, is far more complex than Jesus being "only a man and not divine." That as such a gross characterization of the heresy as to be untrue. This is one of the problems I find with your and several other sites--your knowledge of Church history and teaching is so weak that it is not only imprecise but often downright wrong. You are better at inflamatory rhetoric than Truth. Same for Restore DC Catholicism and Les Femmes. more study less internet time would be good for you


Thank you for your comment and reading this blog.

I think your beef is really with the institute, as this is taken word for word from their PR statement. I am doing them a favor.

Theresy promoted by Arius was around even before he promoted it.

But I would suggest that you attend the talk, have a discussion with the presenter and then make a determination if they are correct or incorrect.

What say you?????

Restore-DC-Catholicism said...

Anonymous, what's your REAL problem? Hmmm????

Anonymous said...

why would I possibly attend a talk by an "institute" that knows so little as to make the claims you cited. I am sorry that I blamed you for their sloppy scholarship but the fact still remains that your knowledge of the History of the Church was not sufficient to catch their gross errors. In your part of the country, you have some excellent Church historians, theologians, and Catholic faculties. Safe and orthodox speakers could be found at the Dominican House of Studies, Saint Anselm's Abbey, The Discalced Carmelites. Father Regis Armstrong a Capuchin at Catholic U is quite good. In fact while I would not recommend eveyrone at Catholic, it is the premier Catholic faculty in the country. No need to get someone who dates Constantine a century too early and reduces Arianism to what today we would call Unitarianism

Anonymous said...

You know, I did a little research on this Rockford Institute. They had a dispute with Father Richard John Neuhaus some years back. According to the New York times May 16, 1989
A feud between normally like-minded intellectuals took a jarring turn this month when five conservatives from Illinois seized the Manhattan office of a leading conservative theologian and former colleague, carted away office equipment and dismissed the office's five-member staff.

The lockout of the theologian, the Rev. Richard John Neuhaus, on lower Madison Avenue was only the most extreme episode in a long-simmering argument among conservatives. It is particularly bitter because it involves accusations of xenophobia and insensitivity to anti-Semitism.

The May 5 episode also reflected deep divisions between two major strains of the large and multi-faceted network of conservative organizations: the mostly urban, free-market-oriented ''neo-conservative'' intellectuals on the one hand and the more traditional small-town conservatives on the other.

Pastor Neuhaus and his Center for Religion and Society have become symbols of the neo-conservative side of the argument, standing opposite the center's parent organization, the Rockford Institute, a conservative policy research group in Rockford, Ill., which publishes a magazine, Chronicles, that has aroused debate.

Father Neuhaus accused them of racism and anti-semitism. And they are presenting in a Catholic Church

Anonymous said...

I never noticed how "heresy" rhymed w/"pharisee" before...