Eddie O’Neill
National Catholic Register
Feb. 9th, 2013

If you are known as a well-informed Catholic whose faith goes beyond an hour on Sunday, it’s bound to happen. It could be at the company picnic or some family gathering. Inevitably, you will be asked to explain, defend or justify the Catholic Church’s position on some moral issue of the day.

You scramble for an answer. You point out a or b to add some perspective on the issue. Or, worse, you lose your temper. You’re tired of the trite persecution by your family and friends. Either way, in the end, you didn’t feel like you were a good spokesperson for the Catholic Church.

Enter author Austen Ivereigh and his new book, How to Defend the Faith Without Raising Your Voice, to the rescue. His mission is to equip you to better handle such nerve-racking moments.

“We call these issues ‘neuralgic’ because they touch on nerve endings, those places in the body which, when pressed, cause people to squeal,” writes Ivereigh in his introduction. “In our public conversation, they are the points which lie on the borders where mainstream social thinking inhabits a different universe from that of Catholics. Touch on them and people get really annoyed. ‘How on earth can you believe that?’ they ask you.”

In 10 chapters, the author dives into such polarizing topics as same-sex “marriage,” contraception, assisted suicide, abortion and religious freedom, among others. Each chapter serves as a hands-on guide to what is at the heart of the issue.