The Making of a Moral Theologian

Author: Russell Shaw

The Making of a Moral Theologian

by Russell Shaw

Growing up during the Depression as the youngest in a family of nine children, Germain Grisez ate more seashell macaroni than he likes to remember. "I don't care if I never see another seashell," he says. All the same, one has the impression of a tightly-knit family, with a strong sense of identity rooted in shared beliefs and commitments. Two of the Grisez boys became religious brothers and one of the girls became a nun. The Grisezs' house in the Cleveland suburb of University Heights was physically isolated from the rest of the neighborhood, and as a small child Germain seldom played with youngsters outside the family, so that, when the time came to go to school, the hurly-burly of classroom and playground struck him at first as an unpleasant change from the well-ordered atmosphere at home.

The forebears of the Grisez clan on the paternal side had come to the United States from France in the 1830s, traveled upriver from New Orleans to Ohio, and settled down to farming southeast of Cleveland. Germain's father, William Joseph-universally known as "W.J."-worked on the family farm as a child. Trained as a bookkeeper, he went to work as a bookkeeper-accountant with an Ohio firm and remained there some twenty years. In the 1920s the family moved to Cleveland so that the children could attend Catholic schools, and he became wholesale credit manager with a manufacturer of major appliances. On September 30, 1929, their youngest son was born, and on October 19 of that year the stock market crashed. The appliance manufacturer struggled on until 1933 but eventually the firm failed. One of Grisez's earliest memories is of his father coming home from his last day there.

Thereafter W.J. Grisez, like many other men in the Depression, took whatever work he could get to support his family-part-time bookkeeping for a succession of business establishments, door-to-door vacuum cleaner sales, peddling a mineral water from Toledo. All in all, he made a go of it.

On January 9,1915, W.J. Grisez had married Mary Catherine Lindesmith, whose family was of German-Swiss stock. Her education ended after the eighth grade. Her father, a railroad switchman, had died in an accident, and thereafter the 14-year-old girl was needed at home to help with the younger children.

By current standards, Mary Catherine Lindesmith Grisez was not a highly-educated woman; but, according to her son, "she read so much that she was really quite well educated." This reading included standard Catholic authors of the day- Newman, Chesterton, Belloc-as well as the Bible, which she knew much better than most Catholics. Her belief in learning is reflected in the fact that, although the family was hardly wealthy and had no tradition of extensive formal education, much less scholarship, in its background, the Grisez children received as much schooling-college in most cases, graduate degrees in several-as they could benefit from.

Germain attended a parochial school and Cathedral Latin School and in both places found at least some able instructors. At 14 he began working after school in the East Cleveland public library, a job that expanded to full time hours in the summers. That established a pattern of working while attending school that would continue through his graduate years at the University of Chicago, when he held a full-time clerical job at night at the Federal Reserve Bank.

The encounter with Aquinas

Graduating from high school in 1947, Grisez entered Cleveland's John Carroll University, run by the Jesuits. It was there that, intellectually speaking, significant things started happening for the young man.

In his sophomore year he encountered a youthful philosophy professor, Marshall Boarman, who had received a master's degree under Etienne Gilson at the University of Toronto and become an ardent Thomist. This was an enthusiasm Boarman was eager to share, not only in the classroom but outside, organizing an informal Aquinas seminar for his better students that convened weekly in the basement of a nearby pub. There, over beer and potato chips, Germain began reading St. Thomas.

Senior year brought one of those vocational epiphanies that often come to serious-minded young people. Up until then, Grisez had been mulling a career in journalism or law; he also had attended philosophical gatherings outside the sheltering Catholic environment of John Carroll and had encountered a largely negative attitude toward Catholic philosophy; and he was doing research for a bachelor's thesis on "Art and Beauty in Aquinas," and, lacking indexes, was skimming widely in St. Thomas. On Christmas morning of 1949, while he was sitting quietly in the family living room, things came together. He remembers the moment:

I had been going through the four books of the . The end of the fourth book is on the Last Things. Aquinas has quite a good imaginative description of heaven there. I was very taken by this, and I came to the conclusion that it would be a good thing to go ahead and do philosophy-be a professional philosopher and try to teach in a state university or a non- Catholic university. A place where a lot of Catholic kids go and don't have much of this offered to them and where there are a lot of non-Catholics who don't have anybody to argue with them about their faith or lack of it. You could do some good in a place like that. I thought it would be a worthwhile thing to do. But first there would be the long slog of becoming a scholar. Aware that he had a great deal to learn about his revered model, Thomas Aquinas, Grisez concluded that the best place to start learning it would be the house of studies conducted in River Forest, Illinois, by the saint's brother Dominicans, many of them contributors to a new three-volume translation with commentary of the prepared under Dominican auspices. Today it is common for lay people to study in Catholic seminaries, but it was virtually unheard of then. How did he manage it? He supposes his application to River Forest was accepted because the Dominican reviewing it assumed that, sooner or later, the applicant would end up in the Order. Whether for that reason or simply out of a generous spirit (they are mendicants, too), the Dominicans charged him nothing.

One day, departing from custom, the prior asked the young layman to lunch in the refectory. Rising at the end of the meal, the priest announced to the community, "This is the first case in which a student in the has announced he was getting married and remained a student in the ." Says Grisez, "I think he invited me to lunch so he could make that joke."

Marriage and career

Germain had met Jeannette Selby two years earlier, in the spring of 1949, at a parish dance. Soon they were dating regularly, and by the summer of 1950 they knew they wanted to marry; but the Korean war was on by then, Germain expected to be drafted, and River Forest lay ahead even if the Army did not. They decided to wait. In the year that followed, living in a boarding house and attending school, Germain was intensely lonely. Perhaps Jeannette was, too. On June 9, 1951, "despite everything"-no money, years of graduate school ahead, and a distinct lack of enthusiasm for the marriage on the part of both families-they were married. Germain was twenty-one.

As everyone who knows the Grisezs realizes, theirs is an exceptionally close relationship in which the ideal of complementarity-on each side a set of skills, attitudes, and personality traits that balances and meshes harmoniously with the other party's-is realized to an unusual degree. Besides successfully carrying off her roles as wife, mother, meticulous housekeeper, and admirable cook, Jeannette acts as Germain's secretary, sounding-board, and commonsense critic. God alone-literally-knows how much she has contributed to his work, both directly and indirectly, over the years.

Finishing up at River Forest, Grisez was still intent on teaching philosophy in a non-Catholic school. That would require getting a doctorate at such an institution, and the University of Chicago was his choice. Given his interests, he gravitated in particular toward Richard McKeon, an eminent scholar of ancient and medieval philosophy who was to exercise the greatest influence on him among his Chicago professors.

Back then, though, Grisez had no ideas of going into ethics. "I thought ethical theory was a vast, swampy area that wasn't philosophically very interesting," he says. With McKeon as mentor, he selected as his dissertation topic "Basic Oppositions in Logical Theory." This involved comparing , an influential work that at one time was incorrectly attributed to Aquinas and that contains an implicit theory of knowledge and metaphysics, with Aquinas' actual views, scattered through out his writings, and also with William of Ockham's . His aim in pursuing this project was "to figure out how you do metaphysics"-since it was metaphysics in which he was professionally interested.

Still planning on a career in a non-Catholic school, he sent off "probably hundreds" of inquiries to such institutions- and ran into "a good deal of resistance to the idea of hiring a Catholic who was a believer." That was demonstrated in a particularly "brutal and grotesque" fashion, Grisez recalls, at a well-known Midwestern school. After an apparently successful interview, the philosophy chairman drove him to the airport and there, in the coffee shop, put one more casual yet crucial question about his religious faith: "You don't really believe that stuff?"

"You bet your life I do."

"Then, I'm sorry, there's nothing here for you."

Reactions elsewhere were less bluntly expressed, but Grisez got the message. Early in 1957 he sent applications to twenty-five Catholic schools. Five job offers resulted. Georgetown University proposed an assistant professorship at five thousand dollars a year, and Grisez accepted.

Drawn toward ethical theory

By the time he received his PhD from Chicago, he had been teaching at Georgetown for two years and the last of the Grisezs' four sons had been born. Germain was now 29 years old. With a doctorate in hand, he was eligible to teach on the graduate level. The only graduate position then open at Georgetown, though, was in ethical theory, and so in 1959 he began working up that subject. Soon he was teaching two graduate courses: one on St. Thomas' moral philosophy, the other on the ethics of Aristotle and Kant. In these years he also read widely in Protestant moral thinkers and engaged in a lengthy dialogue with the eminent Princeton ethicist Paul Ramsey, a Methodist, who often participated in summer programs at Georgetown.

Now, too, Grisez was beginning to draw certain conclusions about the version of ethics he found in Aquinas. He explains:

He wasn't primarily interested in philosophy; he was interested in doing theology, and you didn't have to have a tight ethical theory and tight moral arguments in his day because in general the big arguments weren't going on in the area of ethics. So the theory in Aquinas is no more refined and perfected than it needed to be, and it didn't have to be very refined and perfected for his purposes. It's sound as far as it goes and very suggestive, but it's not honed and not worked out carefully. He's a gold mine of a starting- place, he's got a lot of good ideas, but he doesn't have any coherent overall theory of ethics, and he doesn't equip you to argue the issues and solve the problems as they've been posed in modern times.

As for ethical thinking since Thomas, Grisez renders a tough judgment: "It's a lot less impressive and lot less philosophically viable than what you've got in Aquinas."

Grisez began to think he might be able to do something about that. He had been teaching the utilitarians Bentham and Mill in an undergraduate course, and had come to the realization that they were psychological determinists: "What you choose is determined by what looks most appealing." To hold this view, however, places the would-be ethicist in a rather strange position, since if what people choose is determined for them, then they have no freedom of choice. What Bentham and Mill were in fact seeking, Grisez saw, was a "strategy for socially controlling people" so that they would act in society's best interests.

These insights set him musing about why psychological determinism is a false basis for ethics. When making choices, he observed:

it just isn't the case that one alternative is better or more appealing or seems better to you. That is the experience of choice. The difficult thing about choice is that alternatives are "more appealing" in respects, and you need to choose because the goods and the bads don't commensurate-you gain something and lose something from either alternative. So the idea that the right act is the act that's going to have the better payoff is mistaken. You can't know that, and if you could know it, there wouldn't be any free choice. Any kind of ethical theory that tries to derive the rightness or wrongness of action from the calculation of good and bad consequences has got to be wrong.

The contraception Issue as a key

Around this time, the early 1960s, the birth-control debate was heating up in the Catholic Church. To the extent Grisez had given the matter any thought, he supposed that "contraception maybe isn't always wrong." In his thorough way, nevertheless, he read Pius XI's 1930 encyclical in which the Pope unequivocally condemned artificial contraception. "It looks like the Church's teaching is nailed down and cast in concrete on this," he told himself. But what did that mean for the ethical theory he was beginning to conceptualize?

Wrestling with these questions, he drew a diagram representing "different aspects of the well-being of the person;" it was one's attitude of being either for or against these, he had begun to think, that was crucial to the moral question. Morality lay in the relationship between choice and action and the good of the human person: to be "for" the different aspects of the well-being and full-being of persons was to be "loving;" to be "against" these human goods was to be "unloving."

In 1963 Louis Dupre, a Georgetown colleague in philosophy and Flemish Belgian who had studied at the University of Louvain, returned from a visit to that important continental center of Catholic thought with the interesting suggestion that contraception is not always wrong. Grisez and Dupre, who later was to teach at Yale, discussed that at lunch one day, and after lunch Grisez invited the other philosopher into his office and showed him the diagram of human goods. "We argued all afternoon," he recalls.

A few months later, Dupre was invited to speak about contraception to a Catholic lay group that met at Georgetown. Grisez was asked to comment, and explained why he considered Dupre's arguments unsound. His remarks drew a "ferociously nasty reaction" from some members of the audience to which his faculty colleagues raised no objection. He recalls the incident as "the beginning of a kind of personal antagonism. I got mad."

In the spring of 1964 Grisez had attended the annual convention of the American Catholic Philosophical Association, held in Kansas City. By then the contraception controversy was going strong. Grisez found hardly any of his fellow Catholic philosophers interested in defending the Church's teaching; it occurred to him that he should further develop his own thinking on the subject and publish an article. But he hesitated. If he went into print defending Catholic teaching on birth control, he could forget about teaching in a non-Catholic school. (This was no idle dream. By now he was acquiring a modest reputation, had taught a graduate course in medieval philosophy for a year at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, and had received an invitation, which he declined, to be visiting professor at a large university in the Midwest.)

"I decided, 'Well, I ought to write the article on contraception,"' he recalls. After two weeks of concentrated effort in the spring of 1964 he had produced the manuscript of a book. He sent it to the Bruce Publishing Company in Milwaukee, a Catholic house whose principal editor, William E. May (now an eminent theologian in his own right as well as a close friend and Grisez enthusiast), had earlier invited him to write on the subject. The volume was published in January, 1965, as

Its core was the laying-out of Grisez's emerging ethical theory and its application to the question of contraception. In much over-simplified terms, the argument is this: The choice to contracept is a choice against the human good of procreation and as such can never be justified, since it is never morally right to turn one's will against a good of the person, not even for the sake of some other good. The argument was developed meticulously, accompanied by a devastating critique of inadequate "natural law" arguments against contraception (e.g., the "perverted faculty") and a similar critique of the case some Catholic moralists had lately begun to make for the practice (or at least for "the Pill"-the new oral contraceptive-in the confusion of those days sometimes thought to be morally distinguishable from older forms of contraception). The book is dedicated to William Joseph Grisez and Mary Catherine Lindesmith Grisez, "who did not prevent my life."

The "birth-control commission"

Canny readers recognized in a new and potentially important voice, and this was reflected in the reviews. "In the modern controversy [over contraception]," observed the Jesuit moralist John C. Ford, "Grisez's work is the first philosophical attempt I have seen which makes a substantial, constructive contribution to an understanding of the Church's natural-law position." In a long "Special Review" in the , the Jesuit theologian Richard McCormick called the volume "an unusual book," and said "the quality of Grisez's work is a guarantee that we shall profit enormously by his further research in this area." In light of their subsequent careers- Grisez as an innovative defender of received Catholic teaching, McCormick as a major figure in Catholic proportionalist dissent-there is a certain poignancy in the inscription on Grisez's file copy of this review: "To Germain-with affection and admiration. Dick, SJ."

Pope John XXIII in 1963 had established a Commission for the Study of Problems of the Family, Population, and Birth Rate to advise the Vatican Secretariat of State on positioning the Holy See as a participant in the international discussion of population. In June 1964, Pope Paul VI enlarged the commission and expanded its mandate. As he did, the internal Catholic debate over birth control burst into the open. Was the Pope contemplating a change in the Church's teaching? Might not the Pill at least be approved? With change in the air, thanks to the Second Vatican Council then underway, the very existence of the Birth Control Commission (as it became known immediately and forever) seemed to suggest intriguing possibilities.

In the spring of 1965 the expanded commission held its first plenary session in Rome. One of its members returned to the United States and shared startling news with a number of interested parties, among them Grisez: about a third of the theologians on the commission held that the Church's position on birth control had to change, another third believed that at least it was subject to change, and the rest argued that the teaching as it stood was true and therefore could not change. Grisez's informant also shared with him the meeting's written report. Having read it, Grisez called Father John Ford and said, "Let's talk."

Perhaps the most distinguished of the pre-Vatican II American moralists, John C. Ford, SJ, was then teaching at the Catholic University of America. He had read Grisez's contraception manuscript before publication and, as noted, had favorably reviewed the book. In expanding the birth- control commission, Pope Paul had named him to it.

From June 1965, on, Grisez collaborated closely with Ford on commission-related work. The collaboration continued after the Pope, in early 1966, reconstituted the body, naming the non-bishops (theologians, physicians, demographers) -advisors-and restricting membership to sixteen cardinals and bishops. Grisez spent June of that year in Rome working with Father Ford-"drafting stuff, criticizing stuff." (One of the documents they produced was a rebuttal of the document that in time would be called the commission's "majority report" favoring change. Of the commission documents that have turned up in print to date Grisez says dourly that they are "only a small and not very representative part" of the whole-understandably so, since what to publish and what to hold back has been determined by the supporters of contraception. )

Pope Paul's own position

All this points to an obvious question: What really was the role of Pope Paul VI? Grisez has no doubt that the Pope believed from the start that contraception is wrong. "What he wasn't sure about was whether the Pill is a contraceptive in the traditional, condemned sense," he explains. Worried about overpopulation in some areas, Paul thought oral contraception might be a solution, and therefore was "inclined to approve it if possible." Nevertheless, Grisez says, as Vatican II was nearing its end in later 1965, Paul VI wanted [the Pastoral Constitution on the Church in the Modern World] to say clearly "contraception is always wrong." That would leave the question about the Pill for him to decide. He had Ford and a bishop draft some amendments, and they were sent over to the Council commission around Thanksgiving time. Then there was a big scramble: "Can we put these in our own words?" By the time they got done doing that, they had changed the meaning of the amendments so that it was no longer clear they were saying contraception is always wrong. So came out rather ambiguous in the end.

What the document says, in fact, is that the "sons of the Church" are "forbidden to use methods disapproved by the teaching authority of the Church in its interpretation of the divine law;" a footnote here cites and two allocutions by Pope Pius XII. The footnote adds that "certain questions requiring further and more careful investigation" had been turned over by Paul to a commission, and the Pope would announce his decision in due course. Thus: "With the teaching of the magisterium standing as it is, the Council has no intention of proposing concrete solutions at the moment." Whatever all this was supposed to mean, it naturally had the practical effect of inflaming speculation.

Long before the publication of , Grisez had concluded that, just as contraception had triumphed in secular society, so, practically speaking, it also would triumph-indeed, already was well on its way to triumphing- among Catholics, regardless of what the Pope finally said. He began research for two more books, one on abortion and the other on nuclear deterrence. He was working on the abortion book in the summer of 1968 when came out. Pope Paul had reached his decision. The condemnation of contraception stood, with no exceptions for the Pill or anything else.

Earlier that year, attending an abortion conference at Louvain, Grisez had found the groundwork for theological dissent in the event of such an outcome already laid in Europe. It quickly became clear that dissent in the United States also would be widespread and fierce. The Archdiocese of Washington, DC rapidly became a center and focal point for this dissent-because of the concentration of pro- contraception theologians there, because a substantial number of archdiocesan priests immediately announced that they intended to set aside the teaching of in their pastoral practice, and because Cardinal Patrick O'Boyle of Washington was a staunch defender of the encyclical. O'Boyle, a crusty Irish-American with a gruff demeanor and a warm heart, took an uncomplicated view of the situation: the Pope had solemnly restated the clear teaching of the Church, and it was his duty as a bishop to uphold that teaching and see that his priests did the same. O'Boyle told the dissenting priests that they were forbidden to preach, teach, or hear confessions in his archdiocese.

Showdown In Washington

O'Boyle called in John Ford to help, and Ford called in Grisez. Within a week the two men had a pastoral letter ready to go in the cardinal's name. It was Friday afternoon. The chancery staff, accustomed to a less frantic pace, maintained that the document could not possibly be issued until the following week. Grisez argued that it needed to be out that weekend. The cardinal agreed, and the staff suddenly found ways to get the job done. Afterward, the two men were left alone in O'Boyle's office. Grisez, his voice growing husky, recalls: "He said, 'You'd make a better bishop than I am,' and he put his pectoral cross on me. I handed it back to him and said, 'No, you're the bishop and I'll help.' And then we all went over to the Mayflower Hotel and had dinner."

At O'Boyle's urging, Grisez was given a leave of absence from Georgetown to work full-time for him. Ford having returned to his duties in Massachusetts, Grisez was the principal theological advisor on matters pertaining to the birth control controversy in Washington. His work involved extensive negotiations with the dissenting priests, critiquing the National Conference of Catholic Bishops' collective pastoral letter (published in November 1968, in response to ) helping to establish a new national entity, the Human Life Foundation, to foster the understanding and practice of Natural Family Planning, and drafting replies for the cardinal to the "piles and piles of letters" that poured in. Grisez was able to return to work on the abortion book in the spring of 1969 and to resume teaching at Georgetown in the fall; but he continued part-time work for Cardinal O'Boyle until 1972.

In time, the dissenting Washington priests-those of them, that is, who had elected to remain in active ministry- appealed their case to the Roman Rota, the Church's chief appellate court. Pope Paul removed the case from the Rota and turned it over to the Congregation for the Clergy for what Grisez calls an "administrative-pastoral solution."

Would it be fair, I ask, to say that the rug was pulled out from under Cardinal O'Boyle? Instead of answering directly, Grisez notes that the Washington dispute did not concern theology as such but centered on "faculties"-under what conditions the dissenting priests, now dwindled in number from 54 to a remnant of about 15, would be allowed to preach, teach, and hear confessions in the archdiocese. Responses to on the part of bishops' conferences and individual bishops were now in, and the picture they produced was one of "open, obvious conflict among the bishops about contraception and conscience, the authority of the teaching, and so on," Grisez notes. Instead of risking further, and possibly worse, conflict by confronting this state of affairs, he says, Pope Paul apparently decided to calm things down.

Against this background the Washington case came to its inglorious conclusion. The Congregation for the Clergy apparently was instructed to find a pastoral solution. The result was a statement that seemed to say all the right things but gave the game away by requiring restoration of the faculties if the priests merely agreed to insist that Catholics whom they dealt with in the matter of contraception be "guided by objective moral norms." One night shortly before its publication Grisez argued with Cardinal O'Boyle until well past midnight, urging him to fly to Rome to remonstrate with the Pope and even threaten resignation if need be. "I just can't do that with the Pope," O'Boyle said. Says Grisez: "That was the sad ending of that episode."

Keeping perspective

Grisez is unusually detached- even disengaged-about such matters. Using a formulation that students of his work would recognize as an element of his moral theory, he says now: "My overall project isn't that I've got a particular state of affairs in mind that I want to accomplish." It was not always that way. He recalls leaving the May 1968 abortion conference at Louvain deeply discouraged by the evidence of dissent he had found among Catholic intellectuals there, not only on birth control but even, to some extent, on abortion. On the way home he stayed overnight with a priest-friend in London.

I woke up very early with the light flooding the room, and I was thinking about this. And it occurred to me, "Well, the whole things is providential, and you can't really figure out where what you're doing fits in or what good it's going to do. But that shouldn't really concern you too much. It's all going to come out right in the end." And beginning to think of things that way made it possible for me to do everything I've done since then.

If that sounds Pollyannish, Grisez's view of the state of the Church is a blunt, harsh corrective. Conditions in Catholicism worldwide, he believes, are very bad, with a kind of "artificial unity" masking confusion and dissent not only on moral questions but on fundamental dogmas like Jesus' bodily resurrection and the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist. The problem extends not just to the simple faithful and the theologians but to people in authority. Much depends on the next pope.

Meanwhile the Church is in crisis, and the condition of moral theology is particularly bad. Pope John Paul II, to his credit, is "dealing constantly with morality as a matter of truth"-for example, in --while also speaking of Christian humanism. Says Grisez appreciatively: "That's light years away from how it would have been looked at in the old days, and I don't think it's going to go away.

If the Church gets itself straightened out..." As for his own efforts: "What I'm doing is coming along and getting picked up in a few places." Still, the overall picture is bleak. The renewal of moral theology for which Vatican II called "isn't happening." And: "On the whole, dissenting moral theology is prevailing around the world. If I had been thinking about fighting and winning some kind of war, the whole thing would be completely impossible. You just couldn't do it. I don't have the status, I don't have the power. I haven't' accomplished that much."

Further complicating matters is the neo-Platonist strain of other-worldliness in Christianity against which secular humanism so disastrously rebelled several centuries back.

More and more it's nonbelievers who set the framework, determine the agenda, establish the public culture... If there is no God, you've got to be a consequentialist and do your best. That's not a bad position for somebody who doesn't believe in anything. And an awful lot of people who think they believe in God really don't believe in anything, because it doesn't have any practical effect. Whereas faith is telling you, "You're cooperating with God but you hardly know what his plan is." And you've got to do his will without seeing good results-not killing the baby, not contracepting, sticking to a marriage when it seems impossible. It's terribly difficult... If Christianity is going to survive at all, it's going to survive among people who are very tough and very clear-headed, and there don't seem to be many of these around.

Time has run out. "No one will ever accuse us of optimism," I say.

"No," Germain says, "I'm afraid not. I'm not optimistic."

Russell Shaw is director of public information for the Knights of Columbus in Washington, DC. This article is excerpted from a profile that will appear in Ethics, Metaphysics, and Politics: Essays on Grisez, edited by Dr. Robert George, forthcoming in the fall of 1996 from Georgetown University Press.

This article appeared in the March 1996 issue of "The Catholic World Report," P.O. Box 6718, Syracuse, NY 13217- 7912, 800-825-0061. Published monthly except bimonthly August/September at $39.95 per year.