About Daniel J. Heisey

Daniel J. Heisey, O. S. B, is a Benedictine monk of Saint Vincent Archabbey, Latrobe, Pennsylvania, where he is known as Brother Bruno. He teaches Church History at Saint Vincent Seminary.

Maurice Evans and Hamlet


In her autobiography, My Life in Three Acts (1990), Helen Hayes contrasted her acting career with that of her friend, Maurice Evans. “Maurice had an advantage that I lacked,” she explained, “a strong drive to get ahead.” Of herself, she shrugged, “I just floated along, and things somehow fell into my lap.” Unimpressed by Evans’ drive, [...]

Maurice Evans and Hamlet2023-09-17T23:03:12-05:00

W. H. Lewis’ Criticism of Shakespeare


In 1982, Clyde S. Kilby and Marjorie Lamp Mead published Brothers and Friends, an edition of the diaries of Warren Hamilton Lewis. Lewis (1895-1973) signed his name W. H. Lewis, and to family and friends he was known as Warnie. He was the elder brother to C. S. Lewis, and his diaries provide invaluable information and [...]

W. H. Lewis’ Criticism of Shakespeare2023-08-21T06:13:30-05:00

Shakespeare and Seneca


A selfish king plunging his kingdom into chaos; a wise old counselor killed for his efforts; an innocent young woman harried to death. Basic elements of William Shakespeare’s tragedies Hamlet and King Lear, and most likely they entered his creative tool kit from Octavia, a Roman tragedy long attributed to Seneca. For good measure, Octavia also [...]

Shakespeare and Seneca2023-07-27T20:08:30-05:00

Integrating Theology and History


A task facing an instructor in Church History is demonstrating how theology and history can complement one another. Although a course in Church History, whether early, medieval, or modern, must necessarily consider a large amount of theology, the instructor needs to avoid turning the course into a History of Theology, which for some students can become [...]

Integrating Theology and History2023-07-09T18:48:18-05:00

Stalking Shakespeare


American novelist Lee Durkee could not have written his memoir, Stalking Shakespeare, before this point in history. This thoroughly engaging book draws upon Durkee’s two decades of researching online, emailing libraries, and using computer programs to compare facial features of Elizabethan portraiture. His candid and sometimes profane account of that research takes his readers on a [...]

Stalking Shakespeare2023-06-16T23:01:41-05:00

Hearing Voices with Daws Butler


Thirty-five years ago, family and friends filed into Good Shepherd Catholic Church in Beverly Hills, California, for a funeral Mass. After suffering a stroke and battling pneumonia, Charles Dawson Butler had died of a heart attack at age seventy-one. His colleagues served as pall bearers, and interment was at Holy Cross Cemetery in Culver City. According [...]

Hearing Voices with Daws Butler2023-05-04T02:52:12-05:00

Seventy Years of James Bond


Seventy years ago, in April, 1953, Ian Fleming published his first book, a novel called Casino Royale. In it he introduced James Bond, a character that has become as enduring a figure in popular culture as Sherlock Holmes. Despite Fleming’s fourteen Bond books, probably most people know Bond from the twenty-seven theatrical movies about him that [...]

Seventy Years of James Bond2023-04-12T17:30:29-05:00

A Trappist’s Monastic Enlightenment


A common misconception is to equate the words “monastic” and “medieval,” and modern people tend to be surprised to learn that Catholic monks still exist and that they no longer live like the collection of circus freaks in The Name of the Rose. However, a few folks have read The Seven Storey Mountain by Thomas Merton [...]

A Trappist’s Monastic Enlightenment2023-03-15T00:51:24-05:00

Running Away Naked with the Church Fathers


During Lent, much of the emphasis concentrates on a metaphorical sojourn in the desert. Liturgical and devotional readings help place Christians alongside Jesus during His forty days of temptation in the wilderness. However, that time of testing is also a time of training, preparing for the greater travail and ultimate triumph marked by the sacred Triduum. [...]

Running Away Naked with the Church Fathers2023-02-13T13:04:13-06:00

Pope Benedict XVI and Saint Sylvester’s Day


It is worth noticing that Pope Benedict XVI died on Saint Sylvester’s Day. In German-speaking lands, it remains a custom for pastors to deliver a Silvesterpredigt, a sermon on Saint Sylvester’s Day that reflects on the old year and the new. One of Father Joseph Ratzinger’s Saint Sylvester’s Day reflections, “Meditation for New Year’s Eve,” appeared [...]

Pope Benedict XVI and Saint Sylvester’s Day2023-01-03T04:20:02-06:00
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