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Dear Friends:

            Our common love of Christ and His Church is what, at bottom, day after day, keeps us writing and you reading The Catholic Thing. In the nature of things, there is more love than money (as our writers will only be too happy to confirm) in such activities, which is why we come to you periodically for your help.

            We’re reaching more readers than ever, over 7,000 more subscribers to our email service alone since the beginning of 2016. Our foreign-language partners, which you can follow by clicking in the upper right corner of the site, are growing steadily as well. And our content, I believe, continues to be as good as or better than you’ll find at any site on the web, Catholic or not.

            The need for clear commentary and coverage, too, has grown as new turmoil has spread through the Church and the world. And we’ve tried to step up to meet those challenges. Our work on the 2015 synod alone, for example was picked up not only by Catholic outlets, but secular ones, from The New York Times to National Public Radio. We need to expand our donor base to continue this growing mission.

            We welcome donations of any size, of course: $25, $50, $75, and up. As long-time readers have seen me say repeatedly, if all our regular readers gave $35 a year – an average magazine subscription (and no magazine publishes 365 days a year, 366 in leap years, as we do) – we could all quickly put aside questions of lucre, filthy and not, and tranquilly go back to reading, writing, contemplating, and praying over the many matters that go to make up the Catholic Thing.

            But not everyone can afford that $35, and that’s why we encourage others, more fortunate, to help make up for our less able brothers and sisters. Gifts of $35 and multiples of that figure – $70, $105, $140, and more – have to be our main starting point. But it can’t stop there.

            So I thought that this year we might offer some further incentives. Several of our authors have written significant, best-selling books. We’ll send you one of them free – your choice below – for any contribution of $100 or more. If you look over the list, it offers an amazing range of thought and insight: from Hadley Arkes on the Constitution and natural law to Anthony Esolen on recovering authentic Catholic social teaching; from Brad Miner on the Compleat Gentleman to George Marlin on persecuted Christians in the Middle East. You won’t want to miss Fr. C. J. McCloskey on Belloc, or Fr. Schall on anything.    

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            In a way, this range is not surprising. I was just looking back at the very first column I wrote here eight years ago, explaining the purposes of The Catholic Thing, and I’m struck again by how rich the tradition we have inherited is on everything related to life in this world and the next. To become familiar with the Catholic tradition is to enter into and participate in the fullness of real human civilization, under God.

            Personally, I don’t know what could be a more inspiring prospect. Fundraising letters these days usually promise to reverse the evil courses of history, save the world. If you’ve hung around TCT for a while, you know we don’t do that sort of thing here. We know that we do what we can: remain faithful to the tradition, try to understand our time in light of it, and have faith that God will take care of the rest.

            A decade ago, I wrote a history of the Swiss Guards for their five hundredth anniversary. The Commandant told me that Pope John Paul II wasn’t much worried about his own safety because he believed that divine providence would take care of him. “We believe that too,” the Commandant told me, “but we also believe that WE are part of that divine providence.”

            The same applies to you, and to all of us. We’re part of a Catholic thing that extends far beyond us, individually and as a group. But without our participation, something will be missing that God Himself intended to be here. That may sounds grandiose and mysterious, but if you really believe we’re all living in a world that God created and guides, and that each of us has a role to play in it, it’s no more or less than the truth.

            So please do your part. As much as you possibly can. One-time donations are wonderful. Automatic monthly payments are as well, and can be a painless way to have a great impact. It also helps us to be able to plan ahead when we know there’s a steady stream coming during the year.

            Thanks for your interest in The Catholic Thing. And again, please do your part in this great work today.

With every good wish,

Robert Royal

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BOOK CHOICES WHILE SUPPLIES LAST
(Please indicate the book of your choice (with your $100 minimum gift) in the Message box on the donation page.)

Anthony Esolen  —  Reclaiming Catholic Social Teaching
David Carlin  —  Can a Catholic Be a Democrat?
Brad Miner  —  The Concise Conservative Encyclopedia (OUT OF STOCK)
C. J. McCloskey  —  The Essential Belloc
Hadley Arkes  —  Constitutional Illusions
James V. Schall, S.J.  —  Reasonable Pleasures
Robert Royal   —  Dante Alighieri  (OUT OF STOCK)
Brad Miner  —  The Compleat Gentleman (OUT OF STOCK)
James V. Schall, S.J.  —  The Regensburg Lecture
George Marlin  —  The American Catholic Voter
Robert Royal  —  A Deeper Vision
George Marlin  —  Christian Persecution in the Middle East
Joseph Ratzinger  —  On the Way to Jesus Christ
Robert Royal (ed.)  —  The Catholic Thing: Five Years of a Singular Website
Robert Royal (ed.)  —  Jacques Maritian and the Jews