Course: Key Historical Readings and Biographies
In this exciting course, the student will read four very important historical works.
Three of the works are about great heroes who, inflamed with charity, did great things for God, the Church, and their fellow man. These leaders were on fire for the spread of the Catholic Faith and the salvation of souls. They understood the importance of having Church and State work together for the temporal and eternal salvation of their citizens. It is thus not surprising that these three are maligned today by the typical anti-Catholic historical sources.
The fourth, working untold damage which lasts to this very day, did the exact opposite of our three heroes. Learning his story forms a critical link in the student’s mind between the destruction of the glorious Middle Ages and the disaster we find ourselves in today.
If you would like your Catholic high school children to have a militant and noble Catholic spirit, we urge you to have them study these four books!
The first of the four is a classic biography of the tremendous Catholic Queen Isabella of Spain. When she took over the realm, her country was in shambles and, humanly speaking, there seemed little hope of saving it. There were countless internal enemies, traitors, and problems. Then there were the powerful external enemies - the Moslems, who had conquered almost all of Spain, and were menacing to take over what little remained. Isabella, a tremendous and saintly leader, no doubt raised up by God, rose to the occasion. After conquering Spain's internal enemies, removing corruption, expelling the main group of troublemakers, and restoring civil order, she and her husband King Ferdinand systematically defeated the Moslems in fierce battle after battle, eventually driving them out completely. Isabella was now free to focus on growth and expansion, and her zeal to spread the Catholic Faith motivated her to fund Christopher Columbus's voyages, which led to the discovery of the New World. This is the simply amazing story of a wonderfully Catholic queen who understood what a leader should be - a story of which no Catholic high school student should be ignorant.
The second is the infamous story of Martin Luther, whose heresies and damage has amounted to hundreds of millions of souls lost to the Church over the five centuries since he appeared. Much more important than knowing about Martin Luther himself, however, in this course the student learns about the extremely dangerous errors of Protestantism in general. One of the most important things learned is that heresy does not just concern some dry dispute between theologians. No! Protestantism has, very logically, had far-reaching effects on civil society, philosophy, and morals. Truly, where heresy reigns, everything eventually crumbles.
Soon after Isabella's time, and about the same time that Luther was destroying souls in Europe, the great Spanish conqueror Hernando Cortez, with about 500 incredibly brave Spanish warriors, conquered the cannibalistic Aztec Empire in Mexico with its hundreds of thousands of warriors. This is the thrilling and almost unbelievable story of the heroism of Cortez and his men, given to us by his official biographer Bernal Diaz, who witnessed it all first-hand and accompanied Cortez in the fighting. Cortez put an end to the shocking cannibalism of the Aztecs and their cruelty to their neighboring tribes. Because of this, the Church could then send missionaries to convert the millions of natives and Our Lady of Guadalupe appear a few years later in a country at peace and order. In fact, the Church thereafter gained more convert souls in Mexico and the New World than She had lost in Europe thanks to Luther's destruction there.
About some three hundred years after Cortez, in the latter part of the 1800's, the small country of Ecuador was honored with one of the greatest Catholic statemen in modern times, President Garcia Moreno. Sadly, very few Catholics these days have even heard about this tremendous man who was on fire to order his country around the Sacred Heart of Our Lord. Garcia Moreno, like Queen Isabella, rescued his country from instability, the stranglehold of Freemasonry and its never-ending revolutions and errors (such as separation of Church and State). The saintly, virtuous, prudent, and courageous Moreno boldly implemented the consistent teachings of the Church by putting Catholicism front and center as the State religion, to the exclusion of all others. Under his leadership, Ecuador went from poverty, crime, and instability to peace, order, and in short, to a flourishing Catholic nation with official and strong ties to the Vatican. For all these reasons, he earned the wrath of the Freemasons, who eventually brutally murdered him in broad daylight in 1875, just after he exited the cathedral after attending Holy Mass.
Queen Isabella and Garcia Moreno (whom we hope to see declared saints someday, along with Columbus!) showed by living example how truly good rulers implement the principles and guidelines laid down in St. Thomas's On Kingship and the perennial teachings of the Church about good government and rulers. This course is therefore an excellent combination of apologetics, history, and civics. It goes beautifully in combination with these courses: United States History, St. Thomas' On Kingship, as well as Annotated Papal Encyclicals (especially Immortale Dei).
This is a modular course. Please click on any of the links below to see details for the subcourses.