David Carr

Known for his work at The New York Times, David Carr struggled with both addiction and religion.

David Carr collapsed at The New York Times offices last night after moderating a panel on the film Citizenfour with Edward J. Snowden. He was pronounced dead at the hospital.

David Carr was a media critic with a complicated relationship with religion. He compared his Catholic outlook to his father’s in his memoir “The Night of the Gun,” stating that his father is certain of his “towering faith,” while Carr “lives in search of faith.” The book also recalls his battle with crack cocaine addiction.

John Carr, David’s brother, is known as “a hero for modern Catholic progressives – arguably, one of the most important behind-the-scenes Catholics in American politics.” Before retiring in 2012, his career had dictated the intermingling of politics and Catholicism in Washington, D.C. for 25 years, as he advised all of the top Catholic bishops in America.

Carr enjoyed the community that came out of being raised Catholic and going to a Catholic church, but it’s not where he finds God. In an interview with NPR’s Terry Gross, he wondered if his connection with God is found through doing things for others without having a self-interested motive.

He discussed prayer, which he said was “unnatural” to him. “It’s to whom, to what, about what? I have a prayer in my wallet that I’m saying. (chuckling) I feel like a complete fraud while I’m doing it, but it’s the act of acknowledging that there may be something else out there. I haven’t really thought it through, but I think the behavior and the activity will lead to something good,” he explained.

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