Book Reviews by Dr Pravin Thevathasan
by Jane Deegan
Through redemption, Christ has reversed the effects of original sin. As a sacrament, marriage now symbolizes Christ's bond with His bride the Church, and His love is forever. The married couple can no longer be spiritually separated. They remain married until death parts them. To say that divorce should still be permitted is tantamount to saying that Christ has not risen.
The author examines the dangers of individualism and hedonism and their effects on marriage. In contrast, it is noted that true freedom subordinates itself to love. The section on the effects of artificial contraception on love and communion is brilliant.
This is a really excellent introduction to the Catholic Faith and it is entirely fitting to have a new edition in the Year of Faith. It begins with the Mystery of God and the distinction to be made between necessary and contingent being. There is then a clear presentation of the Trinity and this is followed by an examination of the Church, the Scriptures, the Sacraments, Mary, the Saints and Angels.
The section on the spiritual life includes Faith, Prayer and Charity.The final sections are on
Eternal Life and Catholicism.
This is a fine point by point summary of twelve reasons to believe in the existence of God. Arguments are based on some of the following: who created the Big Bang, reasons from design, our innate human desire for God, finding an ultimate purpose in life, objective morality, belief in God throughout history, religious experience and revelation.
It is really the teaching of Saint Thomas Aquinas for our time. The author then examines some of the problems we face believing in God, including the existence of evil, the teaching of the Church on hell, difficulty in knowing God and the role of science.The now popular notion that science and religion are in conflict is put to rest.
The author demonstrates that belief in God is reasonable. A fine work of apologetic.
It was Socrates who said that virtues increase and strengthen themselves by the practice and
experience of them. Here we have the experiences of fathers and mothers and the difficultities they encounter as
they live out their family life. Practical suggestions are made on a variety of topics including prayer, meals,
chastity, television, Sunday Mass, relationships, discipline and forgiveness. While some points are more helpful
than others, it was difficult to significantly disagree with any.