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Tuesday, June 3, 2014

REVIEW: Angels and Saints by Scott Hahn

Title: Angels and Saints: A Biblical Guide to Friendship with God's Holy Ones
Series: none
Author: Scott Hahn
Published Date: May 27, 2014
Publisher: Image (sold by Random House, LLC)
Format: ebook
Pages: 210
ISBN: 0307590798
Copy provided by: NetGalley
Genre: Roman Catholic theology
Add to: Goodreads
Purchase: Amazon

Rating: 1 1/2 stars

Synopsis: Angels and saints. Catholics tend to think of them as different from the rest of us. They’re cast in plaster or simpering on a holy card, performing miracles with superhero strength, or playing a harp in highest heaven. 
Yet they are very near to us in every way. In this lively book, Scott Hahn dispels the false notions and urban legends people use to keep the saints at a safe distance. The truth is that Jesus Christ has united heaven and earth in a close communion. Drawing deeply from Scripture, Dr. Hahn shows that the hosts of heaven surround the earthly Church as a "great cloud of witnesses." The martyrs cry out from heaven’s altar begging for justice on the earth. The prayers of the saints and angels rise to God, in the Book of Revelation, like the sweet aroma of incense.
Dr. Hahn tells the stories of several saints (and several angels too) in a way that’s fresh and new. The saints are spiritual giants but with flesh-and-blood reality. They have strong, holy ambitions—and powerful temptations and opposition that must be overcome. Their stories are amazing and yet familiar enough to motivate us to live more beautiful lives. In this telling of their story, the saints are neither otherworldly nor this-worldly. They exemplify the integrated life that every Christian is called to live.
Still, their lives are as different from one another as human lives can be. Dr. Hahn shows the heavenly Church in all its kaleidoscopic diversity—from Moses to Mary, Augustine to Therese, and the first century to the last century.
Only saints will live in heaven. We need to be more like the saints if we want to live in heaven someday. Dr. Hahn shows us that our heavenly life can begin now. 
It must.

My Review: I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
First, I will say that this book is extremely well-written. The author has obviously done his homework. This is not a book that was written haphazardly. For that, it earns 1 1/2 stars from me.
Second I will say I completely disagree with the theology presented in the book. From the synopsis: "Only saints will live in heaven. We need to be more like the saints if we want to live in heaven someday."
So, if the afterlife consists of heaven, purgatory and hell, 99.99999999% of the people that have ever existed, or will ever exist, will end up in either hell or purgatory. This book states the only way you can be considered a saint in the Catholic Church (this is considered a Catholic theology book) is if your life stands up to the extremely rigorous standard of protocol that is required to be canonized in the Catholic Church.
If all of this is true....God's gonna be awful lonely up there.

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