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PORTSMOUTH REVIEW PUBLISHED BY THE PORTSMOUTH INSTITUTE

The Catholic William F. Buckley, Jr.

Preview: Portsmouth Institute 2010 NEWMAN AND THE INTELLECTUAL TRADITION

PLUS Pray Without Ceasing by Dom Paschal Scotti

www.portsmouthinstitute.org VOLUME 1, NUMBER 1

WINTER 2010


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Save the Date! PORTSMOUTH INSTITUTE 2010

Newman and the Intellectual Tradition June 11-12 at Portsmouth Abbey School Portsmouth, Rhode Island Speakers will include: Fr. Richard Duffield: The Newman Cause Paul Griffiths: The Grammar of Assent Fr. Ian Ker: Newman’s (and Pope Benedict XVI’s) Hermeneutic of Continuity Peter Kreeft: The Dream of Gerontius Patrick Reilly: Newman and the Renewal of Catholic Identity in Higher Education Fr. George Rutler: The Anglican Newman & Recent Developments Edward Short: Newman and the Americans Deacon Jack Sullivan: My Miraculous Healing ... and more to come. The full schedule of conference events will run from June 10-13. For more information and to register please go to www.portsmouthinstitute.org or call or email Cindy Waterman at (401) 683-1244 or cwaterman@portsmouthabbey.org. The Portsmouth Institute is a summer conference, study, recreation and retreat center for all those interested in questions pertaining to Catholic life, leadership and service in the twenty-first century. 2


THE PORTSMOUTH INSTITUTE

PORTSMOUTH REVIEW VOLUME 1, NUMBER 1

WINTER 2010

The Catholic William F. Buckley, Jr.

Preview: Portsmouth Institute 2010 NEWMAN AND THE INTELLECTUAL TRADITION

PUBLISHED BY THE PORTSMOUTH INSTITUTE

www.portsmouthinstitute.org 3


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Editors James P. MacGuire ‘70 Rev. Dom Paschal Scotti, O.S.B. Portsmouth Institute Board of Advisors Elizabeth Benestad Dr. Michael Bonin James F. W. Buckley ‘73 Patrick Burke ‘86 Dr. Blake Billings ‘77 Samuel Casey Carter ‘84 E.J. Dionne ‘69 Peter Ferry ‘75 Dr. Timothy Flanigan ‘75 J. Clifford Hobbins Rev. Dom Damian Kearney, O.S.B. ‘45 Dr. Mary Beth Klee Daniel McDonough Roberta Stevens Dimitra Zelden Portsmouth Institute James P. MacGuire ’70, Director Cindy Waterman, Secretary/ Treasurer Fran Cook, Conference Coordinator Troy Quinn, Music Director Layout and Design: Kathy Heydt

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Editorial Support: Kathy Stark


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Table of Contents

PART I

Statement of Purpose Portsmouth Institute 2009 –The Prelude

The Catholic William F. Buckley, Jr.: In Gratitude by James MacGuire ’70

Some Recollections of William F. Buckley at Yale and Portsmouth by Dom Damian Kearney ’45

My Old Man and the Sea by Christopher Buckley ’70

PART II

Thursday Conference Opening by James MacGuire ‘70

Proceedings of the 2009 Portsmouth Institute on The Catholic William F. Buckley, Jr. Address by Fr. George W. Rutler

Friday Introduction of Maggie Gallagher by Dr. James DeVecchi

Address by Maggie Gallagher

Introduction of Joseph Bottum by Peter M. Flanigan ‘41 Address by Joseph Bottum

Introduction of Roger Kimball by The Hon. James L. Buckley, P. ’72, ’73, ‘76

Address by Roger Kimball

Introduction of E.J. Dionne ‘69 by Dom Damian Kearney ‘45

Address by E.J. Dionne ‘69

Saturday Introduction of Katherine Lopez by Dr. Mary Beth Klee

Address by Katherine Lopez

Introduction of Lee Edwards by James F. W. Buckley ‘73

Address by Lee Edwards

Closing Session

Remarks by Neal Freeman, James MacGuire ’70 and Clark Judge

Sacred Concert Opening Remarks by Dr. James DeVecchi and Abbot Caedmon Holmes

Biographies of the Artists, Speakers and Presenters

PART III

Looking Ahead: Portsmouth Institute 2010

The Catholic John Henry Newman by Dom Damian Kearney ‘45

Pray Without Ceasing by Dom Paschal Scotti

Ex Portus Ostio by James MacGuire ‘70 5


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Statement of Purpose We are delighted to present, in this first number of the Portsmouth Review, the proceedings of last summer’s inaugural Portsmouth Institute conference on The Catholic William F. Buckley, Jr. and also to preview next June’s conference on Newman and the Intellectual Tradition. We thought it might also be appropriate to write a few words about our purposes in launching the Portsmouth Institute and this Review, as natural extensions of the work of Portsmouth Abbey and School. The Portsmouth Institute has been created as a forum for the furtherance of Catholic life, leadership and service in the twenty-first century. We will host conferences and other activities to this end on our beautiful campus and elsewhere, and communicate with our constituency through publications such as this one in print and on-line. In every age in society as a whole, and in the Church in particular, there are questions, challenges and opportunities in need of exploration, and our turbulent time is no exception. As one generation gives way to another, important voices fall silent and others arise. In the last year alone, the deaths of Avery Cardinal Dulles and Fr. John Richard Neuhaus signal the passing of the torch from one generation to another of Catholic intellectual leadership. Presumptuous though it may be, we think we have a small part to play in this dialogue, owing to our fifteen-hundred-year-old Benedictine monastic tradition, and also owing to our four-score-plus years as America’s leading Catholic boarding school, one that in the present day is educating and forming some 370 young men and women annually, about 100 of whom are then taking their places in the most outstanding colleges and universities our country has to offer. We encourage all of our friends to join us in this enterprise, by reading and commenting upon our content, by suggesting or submitting articles of their own, and by joining us at our events and presenting their own ideas and opinions so that they may deepen and enlarge the conversation we are, at this early moment, just beginning.

A warm welcome then, and God’s blessings on you all! –The Editors

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T H E P O R T S MPART O U T HI I N S T I T U T E

Portsmouth Institute 2009 The Prelude

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what IF YOUR STUDENT PARTICIPATED IN A COMMUNITY MASS EVERY WEEK?

SHE COULD CONSIDER LIKE

COMPLEX IDEAS

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and come to a deeper UNDERSTANDING of her own life and PURPOSE.

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The Catholic William F. Buckley, Jr.: In Gratitude by James MacGuire ‘70

In 1965, New York City mayoral politics were enlivened by the insurgent candidacy of Conservative Wm. F. Buckley, Jr., who believed that the choice between Democrat Abraham D. Beame and Republican John V. Lindsay was a distinction without a difference and that the public was entitled to a forthright voice in favor of financial restraint, reduced crime and improved education. (Hugh Markey ’40 ran as his Comptroller, described by Bill in The Unmaking of a Mayor as “A Staten Island businessman with a fine sense of humor and proportion, incorrigibly modest”). In making his case Buckley combined rhetorical brilliance and frequent wit, the latter of which quality won over a thirteen-year-old nascent newspaper junkie on Long Island. To read Bill Buckley’s frequent put-downs of the oracular editorial page of The New York Times or his appeals to his debating opponents not to interrupt him, as in, “Could we please have a little more quiet from the zoo over there?” were a welcome departure from the dreariness of conventional campaigns. So you can imagine my delight a year later when I discovered that Bill’s son Christopher would become my classmate and, as the years went on, dear friend. 9


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My first interaction with Bill came at a Parents’ Weekend dinner two years later when I was the waiter assigned to the Buckley table to pour Fr. Peter’s best claret for the occasion. As I finished pouring his wine glass and began to move on, Bill said, “Not so fast,” and, finishing his water, added, “Fill this one too.” When I had done that he held up his coffee cup, and when that was filled he asked me to follow the same arrangements for Mrs. Buckley. The other parents at the table appeared nonplussed. I, on the other hand, realized immediately that I had just learned a lesson of life-changing proportions. (When I reminded him of this interaction in a birthday note decades later, he responded that, though he did not recall the event, it sounded “inherently credible.”) Over the course of his 82 years Bill taught many lessons, most of them far more profound than the one someone as superficial as I was able to digest that night (on the JV football field, about an hour later, if memory serves). Upon his death in late February, the papers and news magazines were full of his achievements as an author, editor, TV host, etc., all from the secular point of view to be expected from such organs. It was left to George Wiegel of the Ethics and Public Policy Center to state the obvious point that Bill “belonged on any serious list of the five most publicly consequential Catholics in the twentieth century.”

Bill with Hugh Markey ’40 (right) who ran as his Comptroller. Bill described Hugh in The Unmaking of a Mayor as “A Staten Island businessman with a fine sense of humor and proportion, incorrigibly modest.” 10


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This was evident in his first book, God and Man at Yale (1951), when he wrote: I believe the duel between Christianity and atheism is the most important in the world. I further believe that the struggle between individualism and collectivism is the same struggle reproduced on another level. In Nearer, My God (1997), Bill wrote of his own Catholic schooling at St. John’s, Beaumont, the Jesuit school near Windsor, in England: I had been, notwithstanding the distance from home, very happy there, and I knew absolutely– about this there was simply no doubt– that I had a deep and permanent involvement with Catholic Christianity. They say about alcoholics that they are never “cured,” but I am a senior citizen and my faith has never left me, and I must suppose that Fr. Sharkey and Fr. Manning and Fr. Payne had something to do with it; they and the closeness I felt, every morning, to the mystical things that were taking place on the altar. In the same book he wrote about visiting Lourdes: They are in Lourdes because of this palpability of the emanations that gave birth to the shrine. The spiritual tonic is felt. If it were otherwise, the pilgrims would diminish in number; would, by now, have disappeared, as at Delphos, which one visits as a museum, not a shrine. What it is that fetches them is, I think, quite simply stated, namely a reinforced conviction that the Lord God loves His creatures, healthy or infirm; that they– we– must understand the nature of love, which is salvific in its powers; and that, although we are free to attempt to divine God’s purpose, we will never succeed in doing so. The reason is that we cannot know (the manifest contradictions are too disturbing) what is the purpose behind particular phenomena and therefore must make do with only the grandest plan of God, which treats with eternal salvation. Our burden is to keep the faith: to do this (the grammar of assent) requires the discipline of submission, some assurance that those who are stricken can, even so, be happy; and that the greatest tonic of all is divine love, which is nourished by human loves, even as human love is nourished by divine love. And Bill believed that we must respond to divine and human love in our turn, though few can do so with the prodigious discipline and protean productivity that he did. As he wrote in a speech he gave in 1988: To fail to experience gratitude when walking through the corridors of the Metropolitan Museum, when listening to the music of Bach or Beethoven, when exercising our freedom to speak, or, as happened to us three weeks ago, to give, or 11


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withhold, our assent, is to fail to recognize how much we have received from the great wellsprings of human talent and concern that gave us Shakespeare, Abraham Lincoln, Mark Twain, our parents, our friends. We need a rebirth of gratitude for those who have cared for us, living and, mostly, dead. The high moments of our way of life are their gifts to us. We must remember them in our thoughts and in our prayers; and in our deeds. Reading Bill was an excellent way to prepare for Fr. Damian’s daily vocabulary tests – from animadversions, through chiliastic, saphrophytic, and tergiversations, to viscidity, it was best to have a dictionary close at hand. If one were confronted with a handwritten note from him (he wrote one to the author of every National Review piece in addition to dictating over 200 letters a week to readers, controversialists and friends), it was also advisable to have a magnifying glass – even a soothsayer – such was the scale of the illegibility. Nor, despite his evident devotion at Mass (which he attended, despite failing health, up until five days before his death), his love of the Latin liturgy and his frequent recitation of the Rosary (his favorite beads were placed in his casket to ease his final journey), was Bill completely infallible on matters of the Faith. On the night before Christopher’s wedding in Washington more than two decades ago, Bill toasted the fact that the ceremony would fall on the same day as the Feast of the Annunciation. In reality, as Christopher quickly corrected him, it would be the Feast of the Immaculate Conception, an exchange that Fr. Julian did not hesitate to proclaim, in his homily while blessing the marriage at St. Matthew’s Cathedral the following day, demonstrated the difference between a Jesuit and Benedictine education! At the overflowing Memorial Mass at St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York on April 4, Fr. George Rutler (the “spiritual director” and longtime friend to whom Fr. Damian adverts in his article) said of Bill in his homily: His indignation at the wrong ways of men was not savage like that of Jonathan Swift, for it was well-tempered and confident of victory. He fit Newman’s definition of a gentleman as one who is “merciful towards the absurd.”… Since William’s death many people have told how he brought them to belief in God, and there are those who became priests because of him. His wide circle of friends encompassed those of different beliefs, but its width was the measure of his own unfailing confidence, in the Holy, Catholic, Apostolic and Roman Church…Our friend knew that Communism was worse than a social tyranny because it was a theological heresy. His categories were not right and left but right and wrong. What graces he had to change a century came by his belief in Christ who changed all centuries. 12


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We hope you have enjoyed this sample of the Portsmouth Review (Vol. I, Number 1) Please visit http://www.portsmouthinstitute.org/ for information about purchasing the full issue (194 pages with photos throughout) and a sneak preview of Portsmouth Institute 2010 Newman and the Intellectual Tradition or contact Cindy Waterman at 401-643-1244 or cwaterman@portsmouthabbey.org

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Portsmouth Review Vol. I, No. 1 Sample