Classic Catholic Converts presents the compelling stories of over 25 well-known converts to Catholicism from the 19th and 20th centuries. It tells of powerful testimonials to God's grace, men and women from all walks of life in Europe and America whose search for the fullness of truth led them to the Catholic Church. It is the witness of brilliant intellectuals, social workers, scientists, authors, film producers, clergy, businessmen, artists and others who, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, studied and prayed their way into the Church.
Fr. Charles Connor writes insightful and wonderfully readable stories of a rich variety of converts who struggled greatly with many challenges as they embraced Catholicism, including rejection by loved ones, persecution from strangers, and misunderstanding by peers. But, once they responded to God's call, they experienced great inner peace, contentment and joy. Among the famous converts whose stories are told here include John Henry Newman, Edith Stein, Jacques Maritain, Dorothy Day, G.K. Chesterton, Elizabeth Seton, Karl Stern, Ronald Knox and many more.
"A great gift at a moment of history when conversions to the Catholic Church are receiving renewed attention. Marvelously readable stories highlight the vivid diversity of the personalities and the unity of the truth that still brings restless souls into full communion with the Church of Jesus Christ."
—Rev. Richard John Neuhaus, Editor, First Things
"This fine parade of men and women, described with insight by Father Connor, shows how long is the reach of the Holy Spirit and how varied are the personalities He has gathered to Himself."
—Rev. George W. Rutler, Author, A Crisis of Saints
"The touching conversion stories that Fr. Connor so concisely presents convey the joys as well as the struggles that converts continue to experience on their journey into the Catholic Church."
—Marcus C. Grodi, President, The Coming Home Network
"This book reminds 'cradle Catholics' of the pearl of great price that is ours and should motivate many of us to a sharper sense of evangelization as the new Millennium begins. Rich information and valuable insights abound-highly recommended!"
—Most Reverend Edwin F. O'Brien, Archbishop for the Military Services
Fr. Charles Connor, a pastor of a parish in the diocese of Scranton, PA, is an expert in Church history. He is the host of several television series on EWTN including Historic Catholic Converts.
Table of Contents:
Foreword, by Bishop John M. Dougherty
Introduction, by John Cardinal O'Connor
Elizabeth Ann Seton: First American-born saint
The Oxford Movement: What was it? Who came into the Church as a result of it?
John Henry Newman: The Oxford Movement's most famous convert
Rose Hawthorne Lathrop: Foundress of the Hawthorne Dominicans
Ignatius Spencer: An English Passionist convert
Orestes Brownson and Isaac Hecker: Two American Transcendentalists
Robert Hugh Benson and C.C. Martindale: Two of England's best-known priests
Edith Stein: Jewish Carmelite Sister Teresa Benedicta
Gilbert Keith Chesterton: Innocence and humility
Jacques Maritain: A genuine intellectual
Karl Stern: From Old Testament to New
British and French Literary Converts
Ronald A. Knox: A conversion in "slow motion"
Dorothy Day: From Union Square to Rome
Converts of Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen
Malcolm Muggeridge: Something beautiful for God
Some Other European and American Converts of Note