Thursday, October 08, 2009

Book Review - No Spirit..No Church

Fr. John Randall
Fr. John Randall, S.T.D

Thanks to my friend Ed, I read Fr. John Randall's book No Spirit...No Church and had a hard time putting it down until I finished it. And, because of this book, I have learned to love and rely on the Holy Spirit even more.

Father Randall's book is more or less a memoir from the time he was a young seminarian until the present time. He writes from experience and sometimes what he writes is difficult to read especially when you see how the modernists have tried to change the church from within.
"In 1962, Blessed Pope John XXIII called the Second Vatican Council on, as he said 'an inspiration of the Holy Spirit.' He wanted to open the windows and let a fresh wind of the Holy Spirit blow through the Church. In preparation for the Council, among other things, he delegated western theologians from Europe and America to compose an initial draft of the Constitution on the Church.

However, when the Council opened, bishops from the East, who always had a living devotion to the holy Spirit, read the draft and were horrified-there was little or no mention of the holy Spirit in it. They said, 'No Spirit, no Church!' and rejected the document. Subsequently, the Council fathers came up with a new version giving the Holy Spirit his due- The beautiful Dogmatic Constitution on the Church: Lumen Gentium. This helped open the door for a mass infusion of Holy Spirit life into the Church..."
His book at times brought memories of another book that looked at what happened in our seminaries during the 60's and especially the 70's and the 80's, Goodbye Good Men by Michael Rose.

Father Randall was not too enthusiastic upon the introduction to the Charismatic renewal upon his introduction to it. In fact, he used to refer to those folks as "holy rollers". Yet, it was the Holy Spirit working through people like Ralph Martin, Terry Martin (Mr. Martin's sister), and others mentioned in Father's book, many of whom were not Catholic but alive with the Holy Spirit, that Father was able to share "the hope of the victory that the Holy Spirit can bring about if we allow Him his central place in our lives".

The entire book is filled with stories from Father Randall's many years as a priest and events that occurred in the Church and outside the Church, but which affected life for Catholics such as abortion, etc.. He has many good things to say about many Protestants who are filled with the Holy Spirit as aforementioned. One in particular struck me immediately and that was in Father's praise and admiration of healer Benny Hinn. I guess I was one of those arrogant Catholics Father refers to, that used to mock Rev. Hinn until I read Father's book.

I highly recommend this book to everyone who wants to learn to love and rely more on the "poor, forgotten Holy Spirit".

If you are interested in ordering Father Randall's book, please write him at Fr. John Randall at PO Box 114006, North Providence, Rhode Island 02911. I believe the cost is 10.00.

I leave you with a prayer from a Holy Card given to me by Ed and a friend from Church:
"Come, Holy Spirit"

Holy Spirit,
my Light, my Life, my Love, my Strength,
be with me now and always:
in all my doubts, anxieties and trials,
Come, Holy Spirit;
in hours of loneliness, weariness and grief,
Come, Holy Spirit;
in failure, in loss and in disappointment,
Come, Holy Spirit;
when others fail me, when I fail myself,
Come, Holy Spirit;
when I am ill, unable to work, depressed,
Come, Holy Spirit;
now, and forever, and in all things,
"Come, Holy Spirit"
Apostles of the Holy Spirit
2709 Woodburn Avenue
Cincinnati, Ohio 45406-1724
Imprimatur: Mot Rev. Carl K. Moeddel,
Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of Cincinnati
April 29, 1998.


Maryellen said...

I enjoyed your book review. The author covered a lot of history, and Vatican II did open the windows of the church. (I heard a quip that they should have put screens on the windows because a lot of bugs came in with the fresh air).LOL

Along with Fr. Randall, I can say many good things about a lot of Protestants, since their witness was responsible for my conversion to Christ. It was they that taught me to walk in the Spirit and brought me to the Baptism in the Holy Spirit. It turned my life around 180 degrees.

After reverting to the Holy Catholic Faith, my husband and I became renewed through the Charismatic movement.

I found it interesting that Fr. Randall admired Benny Hinn. My husband and I felt that Rev. Hinn was truly filled with the Spirit. We watched his crusades and interviews on TV, and later discovered that Rev. Hinn was raised Catholic! I hope he will return, but I wonder if he could continue his Evangelistic missions within the framework of Church!?

Ed Sousa, Sr. said...

Dear Esther,
What a great review you did of Father Randall's book, No Spirit, No Church.
Thank You Esther and God Bless.

EC Gefroh said...

Maryellen, I am very happy your shared this with us. Thank you.