The Republic of Letters

Chris Date Debates William Albrecht On The Nature Of Hell

This blog has been in hibernation since last year, but I would be remiss if on my return to the blogosphere I didn’t make good on a promise I made to Chris Date, an acquaintance with whom I’ve had nothing but the friendliest of interactions, to promote his debate with William Albrecht. Like yours truly, Albrecht is Catholic and he defends the notion that Christian theology teaches that the character of Hell is that of eternal suffering, whereas Date is a Protestant of the Reformed (i.e., Calvinistic) Tradition who defends the notion that Christian theology teaches that the impenitents in the final state shall be annihilated rather than suffering either the pains of loss or sense endlessly. Although I’m unfamiliar with Albrecht’s work, Date is an able advocate for his position,  and so this should prove useful if for no other reason than as an entree into annhilationist thought, a rising movement within Evangelical Protestantism.

Avoiding Cynicism and Constructing a Civilization of Love


(Pope Benedict XVI)

Asking for divine assistance in constructing a civilization of love might seem like quaint and trite piety. But that’s only because we fail to realize the difficulty and enormity of the task. When I observe how human beings treat each other, even just in our daily lives, including my own, my reaction isn’t one of admiration or love, but of cynicism. Perhaps there are others, but the only intellectually and spiritually satisfying antidote to cynicism I know of is God and prayer.

May the Holy Spirit make you creative in charity, persevering in your commitments, and brave in your initiatives, so that you will be able to offer your contribution to the building up of the “civilization of love”. The horizon of love is truly boundless: it is the whole world!–Pope Benedict XVI