The Rev. Richard John Neuhaus
A Catholic intellectual who was named to Time Magazine's list of 25 Most Influential Evangelicals, Neuhaus was not easy to categorize. Once a liberal Lutheran pastor active in the antiwar and civil rights movements, he converted to Catholicism and is credited with helping to build the coalition of Catholics and evangelicals that helped propel President George W. Bush into office.
In the 1960s, he marched with Dr. Martin Luther King in Selma and joined forces with Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel to speak out against the Vietnam War. Over time his politics became more conservative, in part because of his concern about the moral implications of abortion. His book, "The Naked Public Square: Religion and Democracy in America," argued against the idea that religion had no place in public life. In 1991, a year after his conversion to Catholicism, he became a Catholic priest. He founded First Things, a journal about religion and politics.
In 1994, he joined Charles Colson, an American evangelical leader, to write "Evangelicals and Catholics Together," which helped lay the groundwork for cooperation between the two groups. He advised President Bush on issues like abortion, gay marriage, and stem cell research which, in turn, helped earn him the slot in Time's 2005 list. Following Neuhaus's death from complications from cancer in January, the Rev. Jim Martin, associate editor of the Jesuit magazine America, called him "arguably the leading voice in conservative Catholic circles in this country."
By Ansley Roan