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In Remembrance: Tributes to Ten Notable Authors Who Died in 2020

Here are tributes to 10 notable authors who died in 2020 …

Some were theologians, others were writers or other public figures who have shaped our work. They all will be missed!

Thomas Howard
(Author/ Scholar)

Authors Who Died 2020

Thomas Howard was raised in a prominent Evangelical home (his sister is well-known author and former missionary Elisabeth Elliot), became Episcopalian in his mid-twenties, then entered the Catholic Church in 1985, at the age of fifty.

Dave Armstrong writes of Howard: “He cites the influence of great Catholic writers such as Newman, Knox, Chesterton, Guardini, Ratzinger, Karl Adam, Louis Bouyer, and St. Augustine on his final decision. Howard’s always stylistically-excellent prose is especially noteworthy for its emphasis on the sacramental, incarnational and ‘transcendent’ aspects of Christianity.”

Like C.S. Lewis, who he greatly admires and has written about often, Howard is an English professor (recently retired, after nearly forty years of teaching), who taught at Gordon College and then at St. John’s Seminary. He is a highly acclaimed writer and scholar, noted for his studies of Inklings C.S. Lewis  and Charles Williams.  [bio via Ignatius Press]

“The question of the unity between Christ and his church is the fundamental one,” Howard explained to CT. “A close corollary to that, if not virtually synonymous with it, is the question of authority, which immediately turns into the question of the magisterium—the teaching authority of the Catholic church. There is no magisterium in Protestantism.”

At the same time, Howard argued that he was more evangelical because of his conversion, not less. The Catholic church was the fullest and final form of the faith, he said, not another denomination or just an expression for a preference for a particular worship style.

“I will never be anything but an evangelical,” he said. “As a Catholic, I can lay claim to the ancient connotation of the word ‘evangelical’—namely, a man of the gospel, referring to the gospel, the evangelical councils, and so on. If, however, by evangelical we mean the 18th- and 19th-century movements in the Church of England, or the Free Church movement, or if we’re speaking specifically of the American revivalist phenomenon, then I might find myself outside the circle that these people might like to draw.”

 

Books by Thomas Howard

 

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