Lord of the World
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By Robert Hugh Benson
Perhaps the dystopian novel par excellence, Robert Hugh Benson’s Lord of the World projects a terrifying future of a culture of death, a new world order of exclusive secular humanism in which man truly is the solitary measure of all things. As the dawn of the twenty-first century looms, so too does the threat of a new world war. Julian Felsenburgh, a young, mysterious American politician, is crossing the globe on a diplomatic mission. Inverting the words of Christ, he promises to the world: Follow me and you will know—not a sword—but peace. Yet this peace must come at the price of Christianity’s demise, so the nations in concert move to purge the Church’s deadly poison from the corpus of human society.
Pater Sancte, sic transit gloria mundi! (Ceremony of Papal Coronation)
As the “consummation of history” increases the mass defections from and rampant apostasy in the Church, the last bastion of religion, those who remain must endure persecution, torture, and death. Through this apocalyptic maelstrom moves the English Catholic priest Percy Franklin, resolute and artful, to confront and chastise this demonic power in the ultimate conflict at Armageddon.
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Robert Hugh Benson (1871–1914), the son of the Anglican Archbishop of Canterbury, was a convert to Roman Catholicism and was ordained a priest in 1904. A dynamic preacher and author, Benson wrote dozens of novels as well as numerous short stories, plays, essays, and spiritual texts.
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