Times of Distress

*****

Fr Jos van Engelen, a Dutch missionary priest stationed in New Guinea before World War II, is recalled to Holland to help his superior general combat suspected ideological subversion within his fraternity. He arrives in March 1940. When the Nazis invade Holland, he is drawn into covert operations by British intelligence. It all goes horribly wrong, and he is forced to flee to Amsterdam where he goes to ground. When the Nazis fire on the crowds gathered on Dam square in May 1945, he saves a young woman and her baby from being crushed in the stampede. It is the start of an unspoken relationship with the Strict Reformed Truus van den Donker, and a deadly tussle with her brutish occultist husband.

After the war, he has a running conflict with those he suspects of undermining the order’s ways and of betraying him. The conflict comes to a head during and after the Second Vatican Council, with the conflict settling on the council’s document on the liturgy. The strife results in more measures to get him out of the way. At the same time, he must confront sinister occultist forces that want him dead. The unspoken love of the woman he can never have keeps his spirits from being crushed.

Book One of the CONCILIAR SERIES develops the early story of Fr van Engelen and Truus van den Donker with the location of the story in Holland, New Guinea and Australia. The period is from 1940 to 1970. Both will appear in a future title in the series.

The CONCILIAR SERIES will consist of six connected but stand-alone stories. The themes of the ‘Goddess’, neo-paganism, the occult and Gnosticism are threads running through the stories.  The Second Vatican Council and the cultural revolution of the 1960s and 1970s (1965-1975) form the background to the series. The first book in the series, TIMES OF DISTRESS, was released October 2020, The Second book, FEELINGS DIE NOT IN SILENCE was released September 2021. DESCENT INTO HADES: A SPIRITUAL JOURNEY, book 3 in the series, was released 27 September 2021, COUNTERCULTURE DREAMS, book 4 (tentative title), is due April 2022.

Published 31 October 2020

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Writer … and still in the fifties