A quiet heroism

James O'Gara, R.I.P.

It was gratifying that both the Washington Post (October 27) and the New York Times (November 1) published significant obituaries taking note of the death, on October 22, of James O’Gara, eighty-five, and sketching Jim’s thirty-two years as managing editor and editor of Commonweal.

The obituaries highlighted dramatic confrontations: Jim declaring that the entire staff would publicly resign rather than muzzle Commonweal’s...

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About the Author

Peter Steinfels, co-founder of the Fordham Center on Religion and Culture and a former editor of Commonweal, is the author of A People Adrift: The Crisis of the Roman Catholic Church in America.