Francis X. Maier

Senior Fellow

Francis X. Maier is a senior fellow in the Catholic Studies Program at the Ethics and Public Policy Center. Mr. Maier’s work focuses on the intersection of Christian faith, culture, and public life, with special attention to lay formation and action.

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Francis X. Maier is a senior fellow in the Catholic Studies Program at the Ethics and Public Policy Center. Mr. Maier’s work focuses on the intersection of Christian faith, culture, and public life, with special attention to lay formation and action.

Mr. Maier served as senior adviser and special assistant to Archbishop Charles J. Chaput, O.F.M. Cap., for 23 years in Denver and Philadelphia. He previously served as editor in chief of the National Catholic Register, and as a story analyst and screenwriter based in Los Angeles. A graduate of the University of Notre Dame and New York University’s School of the Arts, he is a former fellow of the American Film Institute’s Conservatory for Advanced Film Studies. He is a cofounding board member of the University of Pennsylvania’s Collegium Institute for Catholic Thought and Culture, and a board member of the Napa Institute.

His bylined work has appeared in First ThingsNational ReviewThe American SpectatorCrisisThis WorldAmericaCommonweal, the New York Times Sunday magazine, Christian Science Monitor, and other national and foreign outlets.

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Paradoxes of Faith in Service to the Supreme Paradox

Francis X. Maier

Henri de Lubac, S.J., understood the human predicament, the grandeur of God’s love, and the beauty of the Church with extraordinary clarity and fidelity.

Articles

The Catholic World Report / July 13, 2020

Escape Clause

Francis X. Maier

As a nation we’re neither as good as our pride imagined, nor as bad as America’s chronic haters – their name is Legion – want us to believe.

Articles

The Catholic Thing / July 4, 2020

Life Lessons: Four Pillars, Three Little Pigs

Francis X. Maier

We have limited time. So how should we use it? What will our lives mean when we finally look back on them? Like it or not, we inevitably choose a path, either by our love or refusal to love; by our actions or our refusals to act.

Articles

Public Discourse / June 14, 2020

All Conflict, All the Time

Francis X. Maier

Nations change when we change. And the latter is the much harder task.

Articles

The Catholic Thing / June 3, 2020

Redeemer of Man

Francis X. Maier

Technology instinctively reshapes a culture toward purely practical action and results. To the Church falls the task of forcing the questions that get people to think about what it means to be truly human.

Articles

The Catholic Thing / May 6, 2020

The Triduum and Easter Joy

Francis X. Maier

Easter is the victory of life over death, our deliverance and liberation in the resurrection of God’s Son. But if our Easter joy this year is mixed with a taste of Good Friday’s myrrh and loss, and a hunger for the Eucharist we can’t satisfy, we should accept it as a gift. It’s a reminder of the precious things we too easily take for granted.

Articles

Public Discourse / April 10, 2020

Justinian’s Flea, Redux

Francis X. Maier

The “civilizational change” wrought by the coronavirus may be less drastic than pandemics in the past.  But for American Christians, it may clarify loyalties in a sobering and uniquely painful way.

Articles

The Catholic Thing / April 1, 2020

Pope Francis’s Respectful Critics Deserve Better Than Scorn

Francis X. Maier

Pope Francis

Catholics have an obligation, rooted in love, to treat the Holy Father — any Holy Father — with the respect due his office. But as in any healthy family, respect does not preclude criticism on matters of substance.

Articles

National Review Online / March 21, 2020

Always the Era of the Saints

Francis X. Maier

Unless we reconfigure our lives to understand and act on it, the “new evangelization” will remain just another pious slogan.

Articles

First Things / March 19, 2020

To Make All Things New

Francis X. Maier

Renewing the soul of a culture (and through it, the political and economic structures it sustains) is the expertise of the Christian Church. And renewing the Church in our age will not primarily be a matter of technical skill or organizational structure or material resources – as important as those things are – but the persuasive power of faithful lay witness.

Articles

The Catholic Thing / March 4, 2020

Thoughts on the Lay Vocation

Francis X. Maier

The chronic, underlying illness of the Church in our country, in our day, isn’t prone to quick fixes, and real lay “power” doesn’t reside in money or professional skill or positions of influence within or over a Church bureaucracy. It proceeds from a personal witness of holiness.

Articles

The Catholic Thing / February 5, 2020

Sex, Celibacy, and the Latest Curiosity From Rome

Francis X. Maier

Matters sacramental and supernatural cannot be reduced to the pragmatic, the functional, and the utility-driven. But critics of priestly celibacy—however good their intentions—inevitably do exactly that, to the detriment of the believing community they seek to serve.

Articles

First Things / January 15, 2020