Today, I've invited Catholic author Christopher Gladu to give us an overview of his new novel Presence of My Enemies. While I haven't personally yet read this novel, it looks intriguing and has earned many positive reviews from trusted sources. Enjoy! LMH
Hi, my name is Christopher Gladu and I have been sidewalk counseling outside abortion mills for 20 years. Many of the abortion mill clients I meet are church-going Catholics, as are many of the people who work in the abortion industry. There is a complete disconnect between our Catholic teachings and our synthesis of those teachings. I grew up in the 1970's when the Church was still trying to figure things out after Vatican II, Catechism for people my age often consisted of gluing macaroni on poster boards and pasting collages together from magazine cuttings - usually with the theme that "Jesus loves me." It's difficult to move from that to explaining the true meaning of the marriage act and why fertility is a blessing. While catechesis seems to be improving over the last decade or so... we are clearly working from behind to try and catch up with where the world and the media have lead our thoughts and worldview.
Presence of My Enemies attempts to fill some of that gap by providing information about the significance a single human life can have, the value of intercessory prayer by the Church Triumphant, the importance of forgiveness, the true nature and ends of the marriage act, spiritual warfare, the dangers of hormonal contraception and abortion and the availability of healing and redemption through Christ. The book is written at a 6th grade reading level so it is very accessible and moves very quickly between interlaced timelines - perfect for today's short attention spans. There are supernatural characters in it as well and the educational parts are conveyed through both situations and character dialog..
Despite the accessibility of the text the target audience is age 16+ due to mature subject matter - please resist the temptation to read this to small children at bedtime.
Here are what others have said about it:
" Author Christopher Gladu's Presence of My Enemies is a brilliant, sobering story of one young woman's struggle with an unexpected pregnancy. Gladu's masterful writing style intertwines the characters' lives in both an intriguing and clever design that keeps the reader riveted through each chapter. A must-read book that is powerful, emotional and a gripping thriller! " Debi Vinnedge, Executive Director Children of God for Life
"Presence of My Enemies is an intricately plotted drama which draws the reader into a young woman's struggle between life and death, good and evil. Compelling and thought-provoking, this is not your typical pro-life work." Sabrina Burton-Schultz, Director of Life Ministry at Diocese of St. Petersburg
"In Chris Gladu's real-life inspired fiction, Presence of My Enemies, the Grace and Mercy of Jesus Christ, as set within a traditional Roman Catholic belief system, are brought to life with creativity and a keen attention to popular cultural trends. How do social media practices such as Facebook influence one's moral community of discernment? What are the deceptions told to us by a society perhaps uninformed? How can Christ's Love and Redemption shine through an abortion debate marked by socio-economic barriers imprisoning minorities and all lower-income U.S. citizens into making catastrophic choices to end the Gift of Life given to them? Chris Gladu writes from first-hand, eye witness testimony, and his innovative writing style is a true Gift to the Church Universal and the World that we Christian believers are called to serve. A must buy for every diocese, local congregation, Catholic or Protestant, every synagogue, every Pro-Life organization." Robert J. King, M.Div., Th.M., Ed.S., former U. Methodist clergy, Faculty of Philosophy (Critical Thinking), University of Phoenix, and At Large Director for Florida Right to Life
“I really, really enjoyed this short novel about a young college girl, Rachel, facing an unplanned pregnancy. The author successfully uses story telling to convey so many truths about a woman's "choice" and the influences surrounding her in America today. Written from a Catholic world view, Gladu incorporates the powers and principalities, not seen, that are very real and present when life and death decisions are being made. These angels and devils take form as humans and interact with Rachel in the story. His portrayal of the abortion industry is very eye opening. Challenged with incompetent staff, whack doctors and owners who's only goal is to make money, he paints a picture of the reality of these centers who are not truly interested in helping women in crisis. A very striking part of the novel to me is the part that the communion of saints plays in our lives. Gladu beautifully describes the soul of Rachel's grandmother being forgiven of her past sins and then interceding for her family members from heaven. I could hardly see the words on the page as tears of joy filled my eyes. I think this book will motivate many to see the battle for Life as a very important struggle that we all need to be involved in. It will encourage those already working at pregnancy centers and walking the picket lines outside abortion clinics. It will, please God, transform the hearts of the those women in troubled or unexpected pregnancies to see the bigger vision of the amazing plan God has for their life and the life of their unborn child. This is a book everyone needs to read and share!” Julie Musselman, Lighthouse Catholic Media
About the Author
Lisa M. Hendey is the founder of CatholicMom.com, a bestselling author and an international speaker. A frequent radio and television guest, Hendey travels internationally giving workshops on faith, family, and communications. Visit Lisa at LisaHendey.com or on social media @LisaHendey for information on her speaking schedule or to invite her to visit your group, parish, school or organization. Visit Lisa's author page on Amazon.com.