Friday, November 22, 2013

Dangers to the Faith (Our Sunday Visitor)

I don't get to listen to Catholic Radio as much as I would like. Generally, I am able to catch about 15 minutes each morning and afternoon on the way to and from work. I only get to hear a bit of our local live show in the morning, and either the beginning of Catholic Answers Live or the tail-end of Kresta in the Afternoon. Al Kresta's show has always interested me, so I considered it a real treat to have the opportunity to review his book Dangers to the Faith.

Ever since its inception, the Catholic Church has had many opponents. People fear what they do not understand, and that fear can lead to hostility and attacks. Throughout the centuries, some of these opponents have vanished while others persistently remain. Dangers to the Faithidentifies fifteen such opponents to Catholicism. However, Mr. Kresta does more than point out these opponents; he also explains what they believe, why they are a threat, and why they are wrong in light of the Catholic Church. The opponents are divided into four categories - Abusers of Spirituality and Revelation, Abusers of Science and Reason, Abusers of the Past and the Future, and Abusers of Power and Wealth. No one abuser is any less dangerous than another. Each are equally dangerous and pose a challenge to the Church. Specific opponents include the New Age movement, Islam, Evolutionism, and Secularism to name a few.

Part Three - Abusers of the Past and the Future was definitely the most interesting section for me. I believe that was because the others abusers are more obvious, but these are more subtle and therefore require greater attention. For example, in "Redefining Orthodoxy," Mr. Kresta discussed gnostic texts such as The Gospel of Judas and Dan Brown's works. He explained that people try to use these texts to distort Christianity and make it seem like Jesus was married to Mary Magdalene or Judas was actually a saint and doing God's will by betraying Jesus. These are all heretical thoughts, but sadly some Christians are led astray into believing these to be true.

This book is a valuable tool to not only withstand the enemy, but combat him as well. It provides us with details on how the enemy is attacking us, and it arms us with tools for the battle. Sun Tzu was correct in saying, "Know the enemy." However, we must also pray for our enemy. Lastly, we must not get discouraged at being attacked from all sides. The gates of Hell will not prevail against the Church. I would recommend this book to every Catholic I know, but especially to college students. Why college students? If they go to a non-Catholic college like I do, students will be exposed to nearly all of these opponents to the faith from professors and peers. Therefore, they DESPERATELY need to know how to defend and keep their faith. Pair it with How to Defend the Faith, and they will make the perfect gift for your new adult going to college!

I received this book for free from Our Sunday Visitor in exchange for an honest review. If you found this review helpful, please click the link and hit Yes.