Biography James Martin
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James Martin: James J. Martin, born 29 December 1960, is a Jesuit priest, writer and Culture Editor of the Jesuit magazine America.
Education and Career
Martin grew up in Plymouth Meeting, Pennsylvania, United States, and attended Plymouth-Whitemarsh High School. He graduated from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business in 1982 and worked in corporate finance at General Electric for six years. Dissatisfied with the corporate world, he became more deeply involved in the Catholic Church and decided to enter the Society of Jesus (more commonly known as the Jesuits) in 1988 and was ordained a priest in 1999. In addition to his work at America Magazine, Fr. Martin has written or edited more than 10 books, many of which are largely about his own experiences. He is a frequent commentator for CNN, NPR, FoxNews, Time Magazine, and other news outlets, and has written several op-ed pieces and blogged for The New York Times.
Martin is a member of the LAByrinth Theater Company.His involvement with the LAByrinth Theater Company’s 2005 stage production of The Last Days of Judas Iscariot, written by Stephen Adly Guirgis, directed by Philip Seymour Hoffman, and featuring Sam Rockwell, John Ortiz, Eric Bogosian, and Callie Thorne, is the subject of Martin’s book, A Jesuit Off-Broadway: Center Stage with Jesus, Judas, and Life’s Big Questions (LoyolaPress., 2007). Publishers Weekly, which gave the book a coveted starred review, named A Jesuit Off-Broadway one of the Best Books of 2007.
Martin has written about anti-Catholicism in the entertainment industry. He argues that, despite an irresistible fascination with the Catholic Church, the entertainment industry also holds the most obvious contempt for the Catholic Church. He suggests that, “It is as if producers, directors, playwrights and filmmakers feel obliged to establish their intellectual bona fides by trumpeting their differences with the institution that holds them in such thrall.”
Father Martin’s best known book, My Life with the Saints (2006), was named by Publishers Weekly as one of the “Best Books of the Year” and was the winner of a 2007 Christopher Award.
In May, 2007, he received an honorary doctor of divinity degree from Wagner College in Staten Island, NY.
James Martin Ebooks