- Joe R. Mcauley
"This was a great book. . . . infused with humor and biting wit.It is also a great expose of Catholicism and its many irrationalities and absurdities. As a fellow ex-Catholic who also enjoys calling out the Catholic Church, I can't recommend this book enough."
"I absolutely LOVED this book. . . . I highly recommend it to any Catholic who is considering recovering from his condition, and definitely to any atheist, agnostic, or humanist who wants to get the "inside drum" on these religious nutters."
- Philip G. Harding
"A great . . . book all "recovering Catholics" should read. In fact it should be required reading for anybody who considers themselves Holy. Brilliant insight & questions every Catholic should ask themselves."
- Robert Kennemer
Joe Wenke is an extraordinary writer and his work is not only refreshingly thorough, but truly heartfelt and brilliantly precise. "Papal Bull" is not just for those who have questions or doubts about their childhood belief system, but also those who seek to learn the truths behind certain interpretations that we were taught while growing up (and told to never, ever question). This book is an enlightening journey (for both the author and the reader) that was tenderly written by an exceptional person who is not afraid to let others know about what occurs in so many families, causing a great deal of pain and uncertainty. It is something that should be read by anyone and everyone, regardless of their religion or how they were raised/told by others to believe. It resonated with my heart and allowed me to free a part of myself that I was letting down by not being true to who I really am, and helped to affirm that events that occurred in my past were not my imagination and were actually quite real. I now have the ability to understand more of other people's motives behind their actions, thanks to this book. There are no words to express the depth of my gratitude to Mr. Wenke and I will be anxiously awaiting any other material that he wishes to write, because I am a lifelong fan. This is a fascinating book that one simply cannot put down, and I only wish that it would end up in the hands of those who think that it is acceptable for an institution to dictate what we can or cannot read, because I believe that it would free their soul and enable them to experience so much of what our wonderful world has to offer.
If anyone could possibly have a negative or unkind word to say about this book, then I would venture to guess that the truth must have hit a little too close to home and that it might take a while to realize that this is exactly what the doctor ordered to begin the process of healing and unimaginable growth. As we know, perspective is everything and everyone has a right to have differing opinions, but before making any decisions, I would add this book to the top of your reading pile! Without giving any of the details away, "Papal Bull" is packed with humorous, interesting information and clever and lighthearted storytelling that readers of all ages and backgrounds will walk away being quite happy to have added this tome to their collection of favorites...
- Jules (Amazon customer)
"A great and sometimes funny book all "recovering Catholics" should read. In fact it should be required reading for anybody who considers themselves Holy. Brilliant insight & questions every catholic should ask themselves."
- Robert Kennemer (Amazon customer)
"If you wonder why a "merciful" God created a no-exit-ever hell or if you entertain thoughts of how boring the traditional religious notion of heaven might be, you will meet a savagely witty ally in Wenke's book." -Joe Meyers, CTPost
"Ex-Catholics will love this book, it is an amazing satire of the Catholic Church. Every bit as funny as You Got To Be Kidding! I highly recommend." -Holly Michele
"For some reason, I kept falling into a George Carlin voice as I read the book." -Joseph Spuckler
"I love this book! It is not only informative but funny as hell." -Rick Martin
"Funny, clever and spot on." -V. Kennedy
"Papal Bull is brilliant and funny, well-researched and informative. . . . [Dr. Wenke] writes with humor that is at once scathing, insightful and absurd. His recounting of stories from Catholic
grade school made me laugh out loud." -Lori Giampa
"A must read Excellent!" -Carole
"A cutting, satirical look at Catholic beliefs regarding saints, Mary, birth control, the treatment of women, and of course the huge scandalous cover-up of molestation."
-Tiffany A. Harkleroad
"Impeccably researched and sharply written. . . . [Dr. Wenke's] wit and incisive perspective consistently deliver humor and important points to anyone willing to open their minds. . . . A work in which you can think, laugh, and ask the important questions is a must-read." -David Nor
"I love the cover and I love the term 'recovering Catholic' of which I believe I am one. I think any one who went to Catholic School in the fifties and sixties . . . probably had many of the same experiences that the author describes from his school years." -Diane Scholl
"It is necessary to call the church out on their horrendous errors and this book is much needed in society. ...Papal Bull is timely and makes for some very interesting reading. Enjoy!"
Solid, honest, passionate outstanding book. I also had the misfortune to be raised a catholic. I want to laugh along as joe reminds me so well of so much of it but I can't because it is all, as he points out, so hideously cruel, stupid, ridiculous and obscene. How do they get away with it? And for so long? And as he points out they're far from being the only nuts in the jar. Excellent book, well worth reading.
- Anthony(Amazon purchaser)
This book was given to me as an Advanced Review Copy for an honest opinion of it, and I thank the media department, and a whole lotta luck, for letting me get this copy.
Whew! I feel like I've been to confession with the universe, (not God, that's a bad fairytale) and I've been absolved of ....something. Thank you, Dr. Wenke, for putting into words and print and citing sources for what I've been thinking about religion, especially Catholicism for a long time. As a kid, I really wanted to believe in God, and if there had been the least bit of evidence for one he would have had me. But I kept looking and nothing.... And I saw, even as a kid, how our congregation was condescendingly treated by the Catholic Church, and I didn't like it.
As Dr. Wenke did, I grew up in a large but lower, lower middle class Catholic family, and went to Catholic school. And in my case, he was certainly right about Catholic School in the 60's and having to memorize the Baltimore Catechism. I do remember once in first or second grade trying to ask a question of the priest teaching us out of the catechism. I also vividly remember being stared down like I was some kind of squished worm, and my question was totally ignored. But as Dr. Wenke also notes, we can all write long, long books about those days. And yes, there was a lot of physical and emotional abuse being dealt out. So I completely understood where Dr. Wenke was coming from.
One of the best things I liked while reading this book, was the feeling that the author and I were holding a really good interesting conversation. And while he cited sources to support his arguments, I never felt like I was being talked/wrote down to as much scholarly religious work seems to do. Yes, Some reviewers have taken him to task, for the organization of his work, and his apparent "anger" with the Church. I never saw any of this in his writing. Yes, he expressed frustration, but who wouldn't? And another reviewer tried to make the point that he repeated himself over and over again. Not surprising at all when one can see that he's trying to break through the indoctrination the Church brainwashes into their students and parents. Parents who rarely had even completed high school, let me add, and who often didn't have the money or energy to question the Church's procedures.
The one thought that kept repeating for me throughout the book, was that I need to buy about 2 dozen copies of this and hand them out to my family members, and at least try to spark a conversation. Because you seen when dealing with these kind of religious beliefs it's often like running your head into a wall over and over.
I encourage you to read this book, especially if you're afraid to read this book. Dr. Wenke makes his points, back them up and makes a completely convincing case that organized religion works only to take over our minds and lives. They certainly don't want us thinking for ourselves.
- Deborah (Amazon purchaser)
"If you enjoyed Wenke's take on the Bible, You Got to Be Kidding! (Books 471), read his exegesis of the Catholic Church's past two thousand years. . . . Mordantly funny, scrupulously researched." -E. B. Boatner, Lavender Magazine
"This book masterfully exposes the inconsistencies and ridiculousness surrounding the church's history. I never thought I would be laughing at such serious subject matter, but Dr. Joe Wenke writes with great precision; balancing historical facts with witty satire. It's about time someone stood up and exposed the Catholic Church, and whether you are religious or not, I highly recommend reading this gem." -RM
"I may burn in hell for even having read this book." -John C. Wood
"This satirical book mocks the church by using actual historical facts. It is a critical and at times humorous analysis of the church's history from a modern perspective." -Katarina Nolte
"I not only laughed a great deal, but [the book] also gave me a lot to think about." -Michele Barbrow
"This was a wild ride. I found parts to be rather upsetting but I think the author really did his homework." -Sher Brown
"An incredibly clever and humorous take on the Catholic Church." -ChristophFischerBooks