Thursday 8 February 2018

The Real Story of Catholic History Answering Twenty Centuries of Anti-Catholic Myths - Steve Weidenkopf

The Real Story of Catholic History:
Answering Twenty Centuries of Anti-Catholic Myths
Steve Weidenkopf
Catholic Answers Press
ISBN 9781683570479

This book was an interesting read. As someone with a Religious Studies degree and a specialization in Roman Catholic Thought there was much in this book that was familiar to me. But Steve ties it together in a single volume. This book is really a must read for any Catholic. For as followers of Christ we need to be able to give an answer.Part of the description of this book clains:

"Whether it's from the media, in classrooms, or out of the mouths of pastors and politicians, we've all heard a version of Catholic history filled with unrelenting violence, ignorance, worldliness, and bigotry. It's enough to make many believers question whether the Church truly was founded by Christ! 
This kind of attack requires no less of a response from those who know the truth. In The Real Story of Catholic History, Steve Weidenkopf gives it to you."
And I agree. And if you combine reading this book with his The Glory of the Crusades, you can answer so many objections to Catholic church history.

This book contains 9 sections and 55 numbered chapters. The sections in this book are:

Combatting Anti-Catholic Historical Myths
I The Early Church
II The Middle Ages
III The Crusades
IV The Inquisition
V Renaissance and Reformation
VI The Modern World
VII The Papacy
VIII Missionary Activity
IX A Mixed Bag

This book was easily accessible. And any Catholic would benefit from reading it. It covers questions and responds to myths that go back to the beginning of the Church. Not just those that have become more popular to spout it public in recent years. It is thoroughly researched and very well documented. In fact, it has over 680 quotes, drawn from an incredibly wide range of sources. But I must state this book is not politically correct, it is not even cautious in presenting the truth, and the historical views on topics that a minority are trying to change through public opinion, sometimes even from members of the clergy. This book stands of the solid rock of history and tradition to defend the faith, both from without and from within. It is a testament to real history, and what actually happened, not modern reinterpretation! And as such it will stand out from the vast majority of works being published today.

As stated earlier this book is an excellent resource. It is a book every Catholic should read! So pick it up and learn how to respond to the myths and untruths that are so widespread today!

Note: This book is part of a series of reviews: 2018 Catholic Reading Plan!

Other reviews of books from Catholic Answers.

A detailed List of chapter titles:
Combatting Anti-Catholic Historical Myths
The Early Church

1 Jesus was not a real person. He was a mythical figure created by Christians.
2 The Christian faith is just a repackaging of pagan myths.
3 Christians borrowed Christmas and Easter from pagans.
4 Catholic beliefs about the Blessed Virgin Mary are derived from pagan sources.
5 Shortly after Christ founded the Church, it underwent an apostasy, becoming the corrupt Catholic Church. The true Christian Faith went underground until the Protestant Reformation.
6 The Catholic Church caused the fall of the Roman Empire.
7 The Catholic Church suppressed certain books of the Bible (for instance, the gnostic Gospels) to control Jesus' message.
8 Emperor Constantine made Christianity the official religion of the Roman Empire, thus institutionalizing the Catholic perversion of the true biblical faith.
9 The early Christians believed Jesus was just a prophet, and not divine. The Catholic Church at the Council of Nicaea in 325 altered that belief by declaring Jesus to be God.

The Middle Ages

10 The collapse of Rome ushered in the Dark Ages of ignorance and misery.
11 After the fall of Rome, the Church persecuted pagans and practiced conversion by the sword.
12 The Church began mandating clerical celibacy during the Middle Ages so that it could acquire the clergy's family property.
13 Medieval churches kept bibles chained up to prevent people from reading Scripture for themselves.

The Crusades

14 The Church called the Crusades to slaughter Muslims.
15 Crusaders were motivated by greed.
16 Medieval Islamic culture was far superior to that of Catholic Europe.
17 The Crusades are the reason for modern Islamic hostility toward the West.

The Inquisition

18 The Church created the Inquisition to enforce absolute conformity in religious belief throughout Europe.
19 The Inquisition frequently used sadistic torture methods, and killed millions of people.
20 The Inquisition controlled the minds of Catholics by creating an Index of Forbidden Books.
21 The Inquisition initiated the great witch hunts in Europe and the New World, leading to millions of innocent women being burned at the stake.

Renaissance and Reformation

22 The Renaissance witnessed a revival of classical arts and culture, which the medieval Church had long suppressed.
23 The Church forcibly castrated boys to preserve their high voices for singing in church choirs.
24 The Church is opposed to science, and persecuted Galileo for teaching that the earth revolves around the sun.
25 The Church sold indulgences and ecclesiastical offices. These abuses led to the Protestant Reformation.
26 Corruption in the Church was so bad that only something radical like the Reformation could fix it.
27 Luther and other Reformers were the first to translate Scripture into vernacular languages, which the Church had previously forbidden.
28 The Reformers were holy men who struggled heroically to free the true Christian faith from the superstitions of Rome.
29 After freeing Europe from the clutches of the Catholic Church, the Protestant Reformation inaugurated an era of peace and prosperity.
30 Queen Elizabeth I of England ushered in a new golden age for her people, who greeted the new Church of England enthusiastically.

The Modern World

31 In the twentieth century, the Church was the willing tool of fascists.
32 Pope Pius XII did nothing to help the Jews during World War II.
33 After World War II, the Church helped fugitive Nazis escape justice.
34 The Church prohibits birth control to control women's lives, and to increase the number of Catholics.
35 The Church seeks to impose its teachings on democratic societies by telling its members how to vote.

The Papacy

36 There was once a female pope named Joan.
37 The history of the papacy is rife with greedy, lustful, worldly, and incompetent popes.
38 Throughout the Church's history, popes have been concerned mainly with acquiring wealth and political power.
39 The pope is the Antichrist, and the Church is the Whore of Babylon.
40 The early Church did not recognize the primacy of the papacy.

Missionary Activity

41 The Church sent missionaries around the world in search of gold and land for European kings.
42 Catholic missionaries mistreated, enslaved, and forcibly converted native peoples in the New World.
43 Catholic missionaries worked as spies for foreign governments, and were rightly punished and executed for it.
44 Christopher Columbus was an agent of Western imperialism, cultural destruction, and genocide.

A Mixed Bag

45 The Church is one of the wealthiest organizations in the world.
46 The Catholic Church is responsible for more wars than anything else in history.
47 Sexual abuse is a pervasive problem among Catholic clergy, probably because of mandatory celibacy.
48 The Church is, and always has been, an oppressor of women.
49 Shadowy organizations such as the Knights Templar and Opus Dei have at various times secretly controlled the Church.
50 The Church has a long and ugly history of anti-Semitism.
51 The Church used to approve of or at least tolerate slavery.
52 The Church's teaching on homosexuality has changed, since there used to be a Catholic marriage rite for same-sex couples.
53 Marie Antoinette was a selfish and decadent Catholic queen who callously told her starving subjects to 'eat cake.'
54 The alleged 'Miracle of the Sun' at Fátima, Portugal, in 1917, was actually a mass delusion.
55 Catholic historians cannot be trusted because their faith compromises their objectivity.

Other reviews of books from Catholic Answers.

Books by Steve Weidenkopf:
The Glory of the Crusades
The Real Story of Catholic History
20 Answers: The Reformation
Timeless: A History of the Catholic Church
Epic Study Set: A Journey Through Church History: Questions & Responses with Alan Schreck
The Church and the Middle Ages - David M. Wagner 

No comments: