BY FRED BARNES
I don’t remember when I first heard from Chuck Colson. Most likely it was in the late 1980s or early 1990s. Nor do I recall whether he called or sent a letter. But I was flattered he had bothered to get in touch with me. That I remember.
I’d never met Colson, didn’t cover the Nixon White House where he’d become semi-famous for playing political hardball, and hadn’t read his book, Born Again, about his conversion to evangelical Christianity while in prison. But I knew, just from reading about him, that Colson was for real. His wasn’t a fake jailhouse conversion designed to get him out of prison early or to fool folks into thinking better of him as a changed man. If Colson wasn’t authentic, neither was St. Paul.
Colson wanted me to give a talk somewhere about my life as a Christian while working in the secular national media. I said yes. Not that I had a great story to tell. I’d accepted Christ a few years earlier and hadn’t suffered for my faith. Quite the contrary, I’d gotten the opportunity to be a regular on The McLaughlin Group, a weekly TV chat show, and moved up the journalistic ladder from a newspaper, the Baltimore Sun, to a magazine, the New Republic.