Foundation for Economic Education

Think pieces on Justice Scalia, funeral sermons, humility and the First Amendment

Think pieces on Justice Scalia, funeral sermons, humility and the First Amendment

The funeral of Justice Antonin Scalia this coming Saturday will be in the grandest possible setting that America offers for a Catholic who spend spent decades on the U.S. Supreme Court -- the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception.

As noted in a Religion News Service update, Scalia preferred the Latin Mass, so journalists will want to probe into the details of the service as they emerge. Another key question: Will Scalia's son -- Father Paul Scalia of the Catholic Diocese of Arlington (Va.) -- play a major role in the rite?

Who will speak during the funeral Mass? Whoever it is will want to read a fascinating letter that Scalia wrote to the Rev. James C. Goodloe after the funeral of Justice Lewis F. Powell, Jr. The subject: Appropriate sermons at funerals. Reporters will want to note an interesting question about Catholic canon law. Here is that letter:

CHAMBERS OF JUSTICE ANTONIN SCALIA
September 1, 1998
Dr. James C. Goodloe
Grace Covenant Presbyterian Church
1627 Monument Avenue
Richmond, Virginia 23220-2925
Dear Dr. Goodloe:
I looked for you unsuccessfully at the luncheon following the funeral yesterday. I wanted to tell you how reverent and inspiring I found the service that you conducted.
In my aging years, I have attended so many funerals of prominent people that I consider myself a connoisseur of the genre.

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