Dwight Longenecker

About Dwight Longenecker

Fr. Dwight Longenecker is Senior Contributor at The Imaginative Conservative. A graduate of Oxford University, he is the Pastor of Our Lady of the Rosary Church, in Greenville, SC, and author of sixteen books including The Romance of Religion, The Quest for the Creed, and Mystery of the Magi: The Quest to Identify the Three Wise Men. He contributes to many magazines, papers, and journals, including National Catholic Register, St Austin Review, Catholic Digest, and Intercollegiate Review. Visit his blog, listen to his podcasts, browse his books, and be in touch at dwightlongenecker.com.

The Power of Pilgrimage

By |2019-02-02T17:18:00-05:00February 2nd, 2019|Categories: Christian Living, Christianity, Dwight Longenecker, History, Senior Contributors, Tradition|

There is within the human heart the need to set out on pilgrimage as if there is a power unlocked in the journey. There is a sense of seeking and finding—that through one’s visit to the holy places there will be growth in grace, enlightenment, and new inspiration… Four years ago my friend Joseph [...]

The Sirens of Certainty

By |2019-01-25T14:51:08-05:00January 22nd, 2019|Categories: Christendom, Christianity, Conservatism, Culture, Dwight Longenecker, Modernity, Religion, Senior Contributors, Tradition|

The sirens tempted unwary sailors towards the rocks with their enchanting song and alluring loveliness. They often stand for the lusts of the flesh, but their destructive allure perhaps more powerfully stands for the seductive enchantment of primitivism, fundamentalism, and restorationism. […]

T.S. Eliot’s Magical Journey

By |2019-01-05T23:09:22-05:00January 5th, 2019|Categories: Books, Character, Christianity, Dwight Longenecker, Literature, Poetry, Senior Contributors, T.S. Eliot|

Through T.S. Eliot’s use of symbolism in “The Journey of the Magi” there is a call to a world beyond words—just as the mystics of historic Christianity beckoned to Eliot from the beginning of his journey…  In the summer of 1927, just after his baptism into the (Anglo) Catholic faith, T.S. Eliot wrote “The [...]

The Underground Shakespeare

By |2018-12-22T09:16:58-05:00December 21st, 2018|Categories: Books, Culture, Dwight Longenecker, England, History, Literature, Mystery, Senior Contributors, Theater, William Shakespeare|

Despite their obscurity, The Rape of Lucrece and Venus and Adonis were Shakespeare’s best-sellers. But why were these poems so wildly popular? In Shadowplay—her first book about the secret messages in Shakespeare’s plays—Clare Asquith explains what sparked first her imagination and then her research: In the early 1980s she and her husband attended a [...]

Incarnation and the Moving Image: Towards a Christian Philosophy of Film

By |2019-06-24T16:36:41-05:00December 8th, 2018|Categories: Christianity, Film|

In the iconoclasm controversy of the eighth century, the church debated the possibility of images in worship. The Eastern Church, challenged by the rise of Islam, with its total prohibition of religious imagery, worried that Christian imagery broke the commandment forbidding the making of graven images. The iconoclasts also argued that the only true [...]

The Authenticity of Clint Eastwood’s “Gran Torino”

By |2018-11-30T22:45:18-05:00December 1st, 2018|Categories: Dwight Longenecker, Film|

Clint Eastwood made his name with a squint, a glare, a snarl, and a few well-chosen one-liners. His vigilante loner has served him well in films from the spaghetti Westerns, the Dirty Harry franchise, Unforgiven, Pale Rider, and more. All these roles are summed up in Walt Kowalski—the main character in the 2008 film Gran Torino [...]

God’s Gamble: Gethsemane, Free Will, & the Fate of Man

By |2018-11-25T00:33:14-05:00November 24th, 2018|Categories: Books, Christianity, Dwight Longenecker, Heaven, Senior Contributors, Theology|

Did God gamble everything in the Garden of Gethsemane, the second Adam facing a real, existential, and eternal choice of going through with the Father’s will or backing away from it? God’s Gamble: The Gravitational Power of  Crucified Love, by Gil Bailie (384 pages, Angelico Press, 2016) Few thinkers have stormed the post modern [...]

The Return of Storytelling in a Digital Age

By |2019-04-25T12:01:26-05:00November 13th, 2018|Categories: Dwight Longenecker, Fiction, Literature, Modernity, Senior Contributors, Technology, Writing|

Podcast stories, like reading, have the advantage of engaging the audience’s imagination. And lest the technophobes among us decry the dominance of gadgets, rather than the gadgetry taking us into a brave new world, the technology is actually allowing us to participate in a much older form of literature: storytelling… Some time ago, on [...]

Two Kinds of Jesuits

By |2018-11-03T23:58:27-05:00November 3rd, 2018|Categories: Christianity, Culture War, Dwight Longenecker, Ethics, Faith, Religion, Senior Contributors|

Whereas heroic missionary effort and martyrdom seemed the hallmark of the first Jesuits, the second generation moved in a different direction... In the Roman calendar, October is a harvest for militant saints. Kicking off with Saint Therese of Lisieux who proclaimed, “Sanctity! It must be won at the point of a sword!”, the calendar marches [...]

Our Own American Genocide: “Gosnell,” the Movie

By |2018-10-22T21:33:49-05:00October 22nd, 2018|Categories: Abortion, Dwight Longenecker, Film, Rule of Law|

While Gosnell tells the true story of a squalid, back-street abortion mill, we are also reminded by the film that the majority of baby murders are committed legally by nice, middle-class people who are well-connected, well-off, well-educated, well-spoken, and well-funded... A friend once commented about Christian films, “For ‘Christian’ read ‘inferior’.” His critique was all [...]

The Coen Brothers’ “True Grit”: Little Girls, Outrageous Outcasts, & Romantic Fools

By |2018-10-12T16:55:06-05:00October 12th, 2018|Categories: Books, Dwight Longenecker, Film, Senior Contributors|

The Coen brothers' heroes in True Grit are wacky anti-heroes, representing the common man against the establishment elite, the ordinary man in the face of outlandish wickedness. As such, they inspire every outsider who longs for greatness, every outcast who has a heart of genius, and every romantic fool who loves beauty, truth, and goodness for their own sake... True [...]

Aliens, Elephants, and Angels

By |2019-06-25T17:07:18-05:00September 29th, 2018|Categories: Dwight Longenecker, Science, Senior Contributors, Space, Time|

Some time ago while wasting time I came across a seemingly profound, but ultimately silly discussion which is prevalent within popular culture. It’s called the Fermi Paradox, and it goes like this: “There are billions of stars out there like the sun. Therefore, statistically there must be billions of planets like earth where intelligent life has developed. Given the vast amount of [...]

C.S. Lewis and the Lavender Inner Ring

By |2018-12-03T22:19:51-05:00September 1st, 2018|Categories: Catholicism, Christianity, Dwight Longenecker|

Inner Rings exist in the institutions of every human endeavor, and the desire to belong leads the individual not at first to some great wickedness, but to the incremental compromise of truth and goodness required in order to be accepted by the insiders—leading, at last, to complete capitulation to the forces of evil... Among C.S.Lewis’ [...]