The Defense of the Catholic Church – Book Review

“The Defense of the Catholic Church”

by Francis X. Doyle, S.J.

Have you ever been in that awkward situation where a non-Catholic friend or relative asks you a question about your Faith, and while you know the answer, can’t put it into words?  Or have you been challenged by a Protestant that your Catholic Faith is not Biblical, and are looking for ammunition?  Are you a homeschooling parent looking for a good text to teach your high-school students how to defend their Faith?  Are you new to the whole world of religion and looking for the right one?

If you can answer “Yes!” to any of those questions, “The Defense of the Catholic Church” by Francis X. Doyle, S.J. is the book for you! Starting with only the most basic assumptions, the author starts at the very beginning with what religion is and why it is necessary.  He then goes on to show how man can recognize revelations from God, the authenticity of the Bible, and the Divinity of Christ.  The author then clearly points out that Christ did in fact establish a Church that is One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic.  He shows how the very survival of the Church in the first centuries is a proof of Her Divine mission, and goes on to validate the doctrine of the Papacy.

Francis Doyle then proceeds to show how we can recognize the Church of Christ by Her Four Marks.  Despite being written 20 years before Vatican II, this section of the book provides lots of proof for why the Novus Ordo church is not the true Roman Catholic Church established by Christ.  Anyone searching for the Truth can easily tell that the Novus Ordo church does not even come close to fulfilling all the conditions for Unity, Apostolicity, Catholicity, and Holiness.

What really blew my mind is that the author also debunks a common argument against Sedevacantism concerning the visibility of the Church! Many Novus Ordo “Catholics” argue that since the Sedevacantist movement is so small, the Church of Christ is no longer visible if Sedevacantism is true.  However, in section 358 on page 227, Francis Doyle says the following: “Therefore, the visibility of Christ’s Church is the clearness with which the Church of Christ can be known by the human mind.”  Consequently, it doesn’t have anything to do with numbers nor institutions, but rather with pure, undefiled Truth!  Ask yourself if anything “Pope” Francis says fits that definition of “visible.”

Having established the Catholic Church to be the One True Church, the author then proceeds to demolish the claims of every protestant “church” to be the true religion established by Christ.  He then discusses Papal infallibility and answers common objections.  He then closes his book with an explanation of the role of bishops, and the proper relations between Church and State.  To top it all off, at the end of the book is a copy of all four Gospels, with passages relating to the Divinity of Christ in bold text and passages relating to the Church in bold italics!

This book is a bulwark of sound Catholic teaching, suitable for simple reading, studying, or in-depth analysis.  It is broken up into short chapters, arranged in logical order, and each chapter is further broken up into specific points.  This makes it extremely easy to read for a short time each day, as it’s very easy to find your place again. Used copies are quite easy to find online at Amazon or ABE Books, but if you love the crisp feel of a brand-new book, head over to True Restoration Press for a copy!

And last but not least, it would be impossible to write a review of this book without mentioning the excellent show on Restoration Radio covering this book!  For two seasons now, His Excellency Bishop Donald Sanborn has been guiding listeners through the book, giving his insight and comments on the text.  The show will air again soon; so stay tuned!


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Justin Eldracher

Justin is a cradle-Catholic who lives with his family in Michigan. In addition to contributing mostly behind-the-scenes with audio and show production for True Restoration, he works full-time as an Optical Engineer.

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