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Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Catholic Fiction Book Club--A Correction

Hi, everyone. Just a heads up that our upcoming Catholic Fiction Book Club, which begins NEXT WEEK on September 9th, will be held from 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. (I've corrected the time on the post below.) Apologies for having misinformed you about the time.

By way of a reminder, the first book we will be covering is Ron Hansen's Exiles. Here is a write-up about the book:

Veteran historical novelist Hansen (whose previous works include Atticus, 1996, and Hitler’s Niece, 1999) brilliantly, if soberly, weaves two interrelated story lines into a riveting novel based on the factual background to the writing of Victorian poet Gerard Manley Hopkins’ classic epic poem “The Wreck of the Deutschland.” The two story lines—one, about what drew Hopkins to write the poem, and, two, about the lives of five Catholic nuns who drowned in the grounding of the German liner off the coast of England in 1875—are thematically connected, in addition to the literal one between author and poetic work. Born and raised in the Church of England, Hopkins as a young man not only converted to Roman Catholicism but also became a Jesuit priest. Thus, he was in spiritual exile from his original church and from his family, who were uncomfortable with his conversion, and when sent by the Jesuits to teach in Dublin, he was cast into physical exile from his native country. The five nuns, whose individual stories Hansen brings to light, were being sent into exile in the U.S. by their convent in Germany, in the shadow of the anti-Catholic laws being promulgated by the Bismarck regime. The tragic voyage of the ship the nuns were unfortunate enough to book passage on is itself chronicled with a heart-thumping vividness. --Brad Hooper

You can obtain a copy of Exiles from our Pauline Center. We hope to see many of you on the 9th for the Book Club!


David Murdoch said...

It was very scandalous for protestants to have turned into catholic back then. I think of John Henry Newman. It still is today in some protestant cultures, although perhaps not as widespread... I remember when I converted there was very little controversy among the family I had known.

God Bless,

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