Item description for A Philadelphia Catholic in King James's Court by Martin de Porres Kennedy & Mark Covell...
Overview After the tragic death of his father, Michael O'Shea travels from his native Philadelphia to rural Kentucky for the summer. In this land of tobacco farming, bluegrass music, and devout fundamentalist Christianity, he is compelled to explain and justify the Catholic Faith. His only defense...the Bible. Join Michael on an Amish-style farmstead as he learns to milk a cow, harness a horse, disk a field, and harvest hay with a team instead of a tractor. Will he discover the truth about the papacy, the Eucharist, and devotion to Mary in Sacred Scripture?
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Studio: Lilyfield Press
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 8.39" Width: 5.4" Height: 0.71" Weight: 0.83 lbs.
Release Date Sep 1, 1999
Publisher Lilyfield Press
Grade Level College
ISBN 0967149215 ISBN13 9780967149219
Reviews - What do customers think about A Philadelphia Catholic in King James's Court?
Beautiful in Its Simplicity May 6, 2008
While the writing is not great literature, any reader who perseveres will be treated to beautiful, simple yet profound reflections on Christianity from potentially dueling perspectives. While the apologetic nature of the novel is in itself impressive, the author's approach, showing each character as flawed but well-meaning, reminds us all to discuss matters of conviction with humility and charity.
A Philadelphia Catholic in King James's Court Apr 2, 2007
One of the things that was certainly lacking in my "Catholic" high school curriculum back in the 70s was apologetics. In fact, I didn't even know what apologetics was until my mid 30s! Unsure and ignorant of my Catholic faith I spent a lot of years sort of drifting in the wind blown by the infamous "Spirit of Vatican II" with no substance, no form, no conviction and no clue!
As I started to train my own children in their Catholic Faith I looked for sources that would not only tell them what the Catholic Church teaches, but also go into a rich explanation of the "why."
A Philadelphia Catholic in King James's Court is the kind of book that would have served me well back in my high school days. This novel is engaging, thought provoking and even humorous in places. The story is so compelling that the reader can become totally engrossed in it. But more importantly, it teaches the Catholic faith in a way that captures the imagination and heart of the reader.
Michael O'Shea is a high school senior, beginning to think about his plans for college when his fireman father is tragically killed in a house fire saving a drug dealer. His mother Tammi, is so shaken by her husband's death that she agrees to take her children out of school early and live on her brother Les's farm for the summer so that she can have time to sort through her husband's papers and have some quiet time to grieve.
Les lives deep in the bible belt. Catholics in that area are in the minority. Although Les had great admiration for his late brother-in-law, he thinks that Tammi made a mistake converting to Catholicism, and he has made it his mission to use the time he has with his sister's family to recovert them back to Protestantism, starting with his oldest nephew Michael.
In many ways, Michael is like a lot of post Vatican II Catholics. He doesn't really understand what the church teaches or why, but he did have the example of his parent's deep faith. As uncle talks to him about questions he has on Catholicism, Michael starts reading the books his father had and learning to understand Sacred Scripture and how the bible is essential to explaining and understanding what the Catholic church teaches.
Young Michael is confronted many times in the books on different issues, like devotion to Mary and the papacy. The climax at the end of the book is when Michael must face a well-known Protestant apologist in front of an entirely Protestant congregation.
Michael does not become a top notch apologist over night. He has a lot of stumbles and insecurity, but perseverance and study become his allies.
One of the parts of the book that really meant a lot to me, was that Tammy O'Shea is never by her son's side during these confrontations, but she is always at home praying her rosary for his safety and guidance. The power of a mother's prayer.
A A Philadelphia Catholic to King James's Court: Discussion/Study Guide is also available. I used that somewhat in preparing my son for confirmation.
I first read this book myself four years ago and learned a lot from it. I gleaned even more the second time around a few years later. This would definitely be a good book for any Catholic adult of my vintage who wants something enjoyable and not too technical or dry for re-learning some of the basics of the Catholic Faith.
PCIKJC review Apr 15, 2005
This novel is about a boy named Michael who clashes with Fundamentalist Christians over matters about the papacy, Mary, and the Eucharist, while trying to understand his own faith better. I think the novel did a good job in explaining why Catholics believe what they do. I learned some things about why Catholics have the beliefs they do. One problem I found with the book was that the beginning was very dull and boring, and did not draw my attention. It started to become a little more interesting with the Bible discussions, but it was still boring overall. I found it hard to relate to them living on a farm. Overall, I think it is a gook book to read if you want to find more about the Catholic faith, but not if you want a book that you cannot put down.
APCIKJC by White Apr 15, 2005
A Philadelphia Catholic in King James's Court was a Catholic vs. Fundamentalist Christians story. Michael, the main character who went from Philadelphia to Kentucky, defended Catholic views and procedures. He tried to explain new ideas to the Fundamentalist, but they where not open to these ideas. I personally felt it became better towards the end of the novel. At first it was slow-moving and hard to keep track of all the characters. The description became hackneyed, along with the plot. Also, reading about the farm life was hard to relate to. After the heated bible discussions began, the story was easier to read. Overall, this book was better than I had expected.
PCKJC Review by Kelvin Lam Apr 15, 2005
This novel shows the struggle of a young boy troubled by his own faith, with problems within his own family from his father's death, to his uncle's fighting against his faith. It shows his struggle to find out what Catholicism is, the flaws of it, and which religion he should follow. It shows the heresies against Catholicism, along with its strengths. It has a sheer lacking in the amount of entertainment in the book, yet it can either strengthen or weaken your faith. It is tends to be utterly dull at times. Not a good book.