Saturday, April 16, 2011

Part 2 of My Review of Holy Ground

At 19 years of age, Mr. Castaldo was afflicted by a serious illness (meningitis?) which required a hospitalization. During his time of convalescence he began to question life's meaning. "Why was I alive? Is there a God and if so does he to be care to be involved in my life?" This led to a spiritual quest which explored transcendental meditation, the writings of M. Scott Peck and Deepak Chopra and Buddhism. This spiritual search makes me seriously question his claim to be a devout Catholic. How does one go to Mass only twice a year since confirmation, then pursue new age philosophies questioning the existence of God, all at the same time considering oneself a devout Catholic?
My readers may think I am being too critical at this point but it is very important to challenge Mr. Castaldo here. It changes the entire way in which one approaches the reading of this book.
As I stated above, the testimony of a devout Catholic who fully understands and embraces his faith and walks away from it to become a devout evangelical Protestant carries a lot more weight than the nominal young Catholic, poorly catechized(taught) and not sure if God was even real or interested in his life. This is basically my story and, I strongly suspect, the story of many of those he interviewed.
I think the reader would be better served if Mr. Castaldo said his book is about a nominal non-practicing Catholic, unsure of who God is, who has a conversion experience and accepts Christ as his Savior, after he left the Catholic Church, not an uncommon occurrence. But a de-conversion story about a fellow such as Mike Aquilina, Patrick Madrid or Karl Keating (all devout cradle Catholics) who became evangelical Protestant.... now that's a story that would cause more than a ripple on both sides of the Tiber River.

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