The Catholic Controversy
Publisher: TAN Books
Publication Date: 1986-01-01
Between 1594 and 1598, a preacher named Francois converted 72,000 Protestants to the Catholic Faith. These are his words.
One of the most remarkable and well-documented events in Catholic history began when a young priest, St. Francis de Sales, volunteered to re-evangelize the Calvinists of the Chablais.
Finding his preaching forcefully rejected, St. Francis de Sales shrewdly switched tactics and began a written apologetics campaign, posting pamphlets on walls and slipping them beneath doors under the cover of night.
His defense of the Faith was so clear and thorough that at the end of four years nearly the entire population of 72,000 had returned to the Catholic Faith!
These powerful little tracts are as relevant today as they were in the late 1500s. St. Francis de Sales draws support from Scripture, the Fathers and Doctors of the Church to address questions still frequently posed by modern Protestants.
Revered as some of the most cogent arguments against Protestantism ever penned; they present a defense of the Catholic Faith that has never been equaled.
Now with beautiful new cover, easier to read size, updated typesetting, and the original content. 320 pps PB
St. Francis de Sales was one of the most effective Catholic apologists and evangelists of the past five centuries. Undoubtedly, he is the most effective apologist to Protestant Calvinists who has ever lived.
Steve Wood (Family Life Center International)
St. Francis de Sales is a doctor of the Roman Catholic Church, who was active in the struggle against Calvinism and co-founded the order of Visitation Nuns. He is known also for his writings on the topic of spiritual direction and spiritual formation, particularly the Introduction to the Devout Life and the Treatise on the Love of God. In addition to his spiritual works, his writings include controversies against Calvinists, letters, sermons, and documents on diocesan administration.
Tonight, I finished this book, except for the French appendix. This is excellent. People are accustomed to thinking of the Protestants as bright young minds posing unanswerable objections to an oafish church. After all, the bright young Protestants ushered in the modern world. This book or collection of tracts by the Bishop of Geneva proves that Catholics did have intelligent, cogent answers. St. Francis de Sales uses Scripture and Scriptural counterfactual scenarios in French, Latin, Greek, and Syriac in the course of his arguments. He is familiar with late Roman and medieval heresies recycled by Protestants. He brings to light statements of Martin Luther in letters Luther wrote that are not well known. His arguments against Protestants having liturgy and the Bible in the changeable common language find their counterparts in our day, with "traditionalist"concerns over the Ordinary Form of the Mass and the New American Bible. His arguments for the primacy of the Pope, and his address of the issue regarding what happens when the Pope commits error - even approaching heresy - are applicable in our times of consternation and befuddlement. This is an excellent book, anticipating all the common anti-Catholic arguments our our times. As an added bonus, buy "Vicars of Christ" by Charles Coulombe and pay attention to Antipope Felix V, who reigned in Geneva about 100 years before John Calvin the heresiarch. Did Felix's aberration make ready the city for Calvin's more profound errors?