National Catholic Register


Why Newt Gingrich Became Catholic

BY Tim Drake

| Posted 8/18/09 at 11:09 AM


When I saw Newt Gingrich in the audience at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington during Pope Benedict XVI’s U.S. visit, I asked myself, “Newt isn’t Catholic is he? Is he here because he’s interested in what the Pope has to say, or is he considering coming into the Church?” I discreetly snapped a photo.

My question was answered earlier this year, when it was announced that he was coming into the Church. I’ve tried repeatedly to obtain an interview with former Speaker of the House Gingrich on the subject, but his press spokesperson says that he doesn’t want to discuss it.

Apparently, though, he’s discussed it with Time magazine’s Amy Sullivan. So, why did he convert?

In her article, Sullivan says that the Church’s intellectual tradition and the example of his churchgoing wife helped bring him into the Church.

“When you have 2,000 years of intellectual depth surrounding you,” Gingrich told Sullivan, “it’s comforting.”