The Good Book

Where to find Yr Eglwys Yng Nghymru O'r Goncwest Hyd At Y Diwygiad Protestannaiddand other mysteries of the faith

The fourth red book, which is wrapped in a plain white jacket with red lettering, is something of a mystery. As far as I can tell, it's called, Yr Eglwys Yng Nghymru O'r Goncwest Hyd At Y Diwygiad Protestannaidd. That can only be Welsh, right? I have no idea what it's about, but it was written in 1968 and costs $20.

The most beautiful, and at the same time the scariest, book I find is stored in a gray box. The book itself is black, with red and silver embossed flames on the front and back covers. Malleus Maleficarum, or, The Hammer of Witchcraft, looks like one of the books Mia Farrow read in Rosemary's Baby, with woodcuts of winged beasts and frightened townspeople, and chapters with titles like "Here follows the way whereby witches copulate with those devils known as Incubi," and "Of the way whereby a formal pact with evil is made."

Loome says he sold a copy of this book "to a young woman very interested in witchcraft, which, by the way, I am not interested in. She was looking for books that would be negative about the Church." My advice is to stay away from that woman and this book. But it could be yours for a mere $25.

Defender of the faith: Thomas Loome
Michael Dvorak
Defender of the faith: Thomas Loome

I've noted the costs of these tomes to suggest that, despite their rarity, they remain generally quite affordable. Loome reports that such pricing is part of his mission to the Church, and another way in which he's countercultural. Elaborating on this notion, he says that his proudest purchase on a recent book-buying trip to England was a crate of Penguin Classic paperbacks, which he calls "food for the multitude."

I leave the Loome with a Cub Foods bag full of books, ready to learn how to know what to believe, desire, and do. Stillwater may not be Augustine's garden in Milan. But then anyone who can endure the weekend traffic jams on Highway 36 without taking the Lord's name in vain has already covered half the ground on the road to salvation.

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