The Corner

2008

We frequently run a best-of-the-year-that-was on NRO during the final day of a given year. This year, even with all that happened, a link to our WFB memorial archive seems most appropriate.

The more you reread Bill, the more you long to emulate the style. The more you want to protect the legacy. The more you want to do what he did.

There’s so much to reread of what Bill wrote (thank you, WFB!), but I frequently come back to this: “We do not abandon reason, we merely recognize its limitations. We reason to the existence of God, it is revealed to us that His Son was the incarnation, and that such was His love of us that He endured a torture excruciating in pain, and unique in aspect — the God of hosts, mutilated by His own creatures, whom He dies forgiving, loving. Can we do less? Yes, we do less, but we must try to do more, until we die.”

The more you know a great man (or woman), the more you are reminded he is but a man. That’s true of getting to know those who are living and reading the letters and honest biographies of those we could never know. We are reminded that we’re all called to greatness in our roles in the world. Bill was a remarkable man. It was an honor to know him, to read him, to love him. But he might be the first to remind us that he was a man. Like so many who have come before us who we admire. Who we miss. Whose legacies we will protect and defend and cherish and shape the future with.

Whether you or a man or woman of faith or not, is there little doubt WFB’s life story is that of one who did what he was born to do? Will you permit me to pray you do exactly that this coming year, whatever your field, whatever your responsibilities, wherever you are? Those of us in the political world have very many lessons to take from his life, but if we all reflect on that — a life well lived — I don’t think Bill would mind at all.

I’m taking this next day or so to recharge a little and hope you can too. Have a great New Year and new year. I hope you spend much of it here!

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