Does 'New proofs for the existence of God' by Fr Robert Spitzer SJ actually exist?

I’ve been enjoying a series recorded some time ago from EWTN called ‘Finding God through Faith and Reason’. The speaker is a Jesuit, Fr Robert Spitzer, the President of Gonzaga University. Reference is made to a book, written by Fr Spitzer, that contains and expands upon the same material: ‘New proofs for the existence of God’, and I should very much like to get my hot little hands on it.

But it’s like a mirage. From the little I’ve been able to turn up, the book seems to be in that Limbo known as ‘submitted for publication’ - does anyone know whether it does in fact exist in print yet?

Thanks so much for any help.

I would like to get this book as well, if only to enjoy the comfort to be drawn from stable black text on white paper and to avoid being confronted with the flamboyant, effeminate hand gestures that Father Spitzer makes throughout the presentation.

Last I heard the new book was submitted to Notre Dame University Press - I checked the Spring 2009 catalogue and did not see it. Perhaps you can watch their website for any developments.

Have you read either of Father Spitzer’s earlier articles on the subject? Both were published in International Philosophical Quarterly:

“Proofs for the Existence of God Part I: A Metaphysical Argument” (Vol 41:2–June 2001) pp 162-186.

“Proofs for the Existence of God Part II:” (A Cosmological Argument and a Lonerganian Argument) (Vol 41:3–Sept 2001) pp 305-331.

Peace all.

Thank you so much for the update, Tassitus - does your name bear any relationship to an old friend of mine, P. Cornelius Tacitus the historian, subject of my one-time PhD thesis (never completed)?

I shall ask at the library for the journal articles - they’ll be a nice substantial hors d’oeuvre to chew on while I await the book.

And I love the quote from St Alphonsus! Hits the nail right on the head.


I actually enjoy Fr Spitzer’s handathon - it’s an endearing expression of his enthusiasm for and delight in his subject, and brings what might otherwise be a dry, hard-to-follow argument to life.

Being carried away by inspiration is a great gift of God; I have experienced it as a writer, and I have seen musicians experience it at classical concerts, and priests during the Holy Mass. Not least of its benefits is that we are freed from the stereotypes and constraints imposed on us by ourselves and others, and become authentically human, animated by pure joy, unaware of anything but the glorious creativity the Father is allowing us to share.

Thank You, Lord, for the flooding, overwhelming, uncontainable generosity of Your Love. Amen.

Actually, tassitus was an attempt to latinize Tassin (my French/cajun family name), and I did not know of the historian Tacitus until some time after (I suppose I could have heard of him before, though, and that’s why the name popped into my head). Since I really know nothing of him, I’ll ask you - what sort of fellow was your Tacitus?

Thanks for the :thumbsup: on the Liguori quote - I agree. And sorry I didn’t notice before - welcome to Catholic Answers Forums!

Peace all.

Publius Cornelius Tacitus was, in my opinion, the greatest prose writer in all of Latin literature. His style is not easy - his sentence structure is complex and he is very sparing with words, so that to untangle his meaning one has to consider not just what he says but how he says it.

He was a senator and clearly a highly educated man. He lived approximately 56 AD to 117 AD. His political views were anti-imperial and, like many of his class, he longed for the return of the senate to power in Rome. We know little about his life, but a decent account of what little there is can be found in the Wikipedia article on him.

He was, given the conventions of historiography in the classical world, very scientific in his approach to history. There is quite a bit of evidence that he consulted actual participants or at least first-hand sources if he could. The most famous instance of this is two letters written to Tacitus, at Tacitus’ request, by his friend C. Plinius Secundus, called Plny the Younger by his modern friends: the letters are about the eruption of Vesuvius in 79 AD of which Pliny had been an eye witness. The first letter is about a fatal attempt on the part of Pliny’s uncle - yep, Pliny the Elder - who was in command of the fleet in the Bay of Naples, to rescue people trapped by the eruption. The elder Pliny, a writer himself and polymath author of a monumental tome, The Natural History, lingered too long observing the phenomenon and was suffocated by the noxious gases. The second letter is about the experiences of Pliny himself and his mother, who were forced to flee for their lives - the account is really exciting and often touching to read.

Tacitus’ main works cover the history of imperial government at Rome:

  1. Ab Excessu Divi Augusti Annales = Annals from the death of the God Augustus, known as The Annals: a history of the Julio-Claudian emperors who succeeded Augustus, probably 14-68 AD

2.Historiae, known as The Histories, covering the wars that ensued upon Nero’s death, and then the reigns of Vespasian and his two sons, Titus and Domitian (called the Flavian Emperors): AD 69 to probably AD 96.

Since most of both these works is lost, we can’t say for sure, though we do have the opening part of the Histories so we know the terminus a quo for that.

  1. De Vita et Moribus Iulii Agricolae = The life and character of Julius Agricola - known as The Agricola this is a biography of his father-in-law - covers some exciting history of Roman Britain.

Other minor works are an ethnographical treatise on Germany called the Germania (De Origine et Situ Germanorum = On the origin and country of the Germans) and a work on oratory, called the Dialogus (Dialogus de Oratoribus = Dialogue about the orators).

Tacitus is particularly known for the epigrams that dot his work eg a Britannic chieftain in the Agricola says, in the course of a (very accomplished!!) speech: ubi solitudinem faciunt, pacem appellant = They [the Romans] make a desert and call it peace.

He is also the earliest Roman author to mention Jesus Christ and Christianity. It is in his account of the reign of the Emperor Nero: here courtesy of Wikipedia, is the passage from the Annals (Bk XV.39-43):

So, to get rid of the report [that he had deliberately set fire to Rome], Nero fastened the guilt and inflicted the most exquisite tortures on a group hated for their abominations, called Christians by the populace. Christus, from whom the name had its origin, suffered the extreme penalty during the reign of Tiberius at the hands of one of our procurators, Pontius Pilatus, and a most mischievous superstition, thus checked for the moment, again broke out not only in Judaea, the first source of the evil, but even in Rome, where all things hideous and shameful from every part of the world find their centre and become popular. Accordingly, first all who pleaded guilty were arrested; then, on their information, an immense multitude was convicted, not so much of the crime of firing the city, as of hatred against mankind. Mockery of every sort was added to their deaths. Covered with the skins of beasts, they were torn by dogs and perished, or were nailed to crosses, or were doomed to the flames and burnt, to serve as a nightly illumination, when daylight had died."

Alas! Even the greatest of minds can have the most extraordinary blind spots.

btw, the Younger Pliny (the one that escaped Vesuvius) went on to become governor of a province called Bithynia (in Asia Minor) and had Christians accused before him. He wrote to the emperor, Trajan, for advice - I think this was around 112 AD. Trajan’s reply is preserved, and both letters make the most fascinating reading. The reference is Pliny X.96-97, and a quick Google threw up a decent translation at this URL:

Anyway, hope this wasn’t too long and/or boring - but showed you that you picked a good 'un for your namesake.

Here is what a quick search of the Internet has revealed:

•New Proofs for the Existence of God: Contributions of Contemporary Physics and Philosophy (to be published by Eerdmans Publishing later this year).

•Jesus-Emmanuel: Evidence of the Unconditional Love of God and the Divinity of Jesus (submitted to Eerdmans publishing).

•Suffering and the Unconditional Love of God (to be submitted to Ignatius Press this year).

So it looks like this book will be out some time in the (hopefully) near future. I hope so; I really want to read it.

Pax Vobiscum

Sorry to bump an old thread but has anyone read this book now that it’s published? I’ve heard it’s quite good.

While you are looking for Fr. Spitzer’s book . . .

This proof of God’s existence is interesting.

The proof is based on DNA and information theory.

Someone posited information in DNA, is the crux of the argument.

Was it God? Dr. Seuss? Alfred E. Newman? Or a series of random events such as if you give a 100 monkeys enough time they will produce the play Hamlet?

The syllogism:

  1. DNA is not merely a molecule with a pattern; it is a code, a language, and an information storage mechanism.

  2. All codes are created by a conscious mind; there is no natural process known to science that creates coded information.

  3. Therefore DNA was designed by a mind.

Also a good site about the the struggle for intellectual freedom at universities to consider that God may be the author of the universe. Currently, atheists write science policies establishing science hypotheses, and the hyposthsis that DNA is a language, possibly authored by God is not allowed.

A good site that helps to fight the suppression of free-thought in universities:

The book does exist, published by Eerdmans:

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