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“Hell”: a CTS Vintage Booklet

Lucifer imagined by Gustave Dore

Two words on Hell, still another of the now numerous CTS Vintage Booklets published on the excellent Shane’s Blog.

Already the title (only one word, and the right one) tells you what to expect from this truly excellent booklet. It is very short, but of stunning clarity. It literally demolishes all the misconceptions about hell but most importantly, it drives a big steamroller over the “goodism” so typical of our age.

As observed for other booklets of this series, there is no attempt whatsoever to engulf you in an atmosphere of emotional, easy self-justification. Things are said not only straight, but in such a concise way as to be surprising even for people already accustomed to such issues.

It is as if the author had decided to go straight against every prejudice of the modern era, head first and with no discounts applied. To the question “Is it just that a momentary sin should be punished timelessly?” he answers “Quite just”. To the question “Surely there comes a time when enough satisfaction has been paid?” he answers “No; not if the sin is mortal”. To the question “is it not all this talk about hell unreasonable?” he answers “it is not”.

At the same time, his delimitation and description of mortal sin is not only perfectly orthodox, but precisely and reassuringly circumscribed. This makes all his answers about Hell eminently reasonable and easy to follow and “digest” for those approaching or deepening their understanding of Catholicism.

This booklet should be given to every Catholic adolescent (or very bright child) with the instruction to read and re-read it until its content has been thoroughly assimilated (which, by the way, is no monumental task at all). Once this has happened, the reader would feel reassured about his chances of obtaining Salvation whilst being taught not to downplay the risks or the consequences of missing this all-important train.

A truly excellent product. I think everyone would profit from reading it. As all other booklets, it can be saved and forwarded with ease.


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