with an overdose of a powerful sedative.”rnRegarding himself, “And I? I have threernfailed marriages and have fathered a sonrnwho is sullen, suspicious but brilliant inrncomputer science.”rnReligion had no real role in his upbringing.rnHis family was nonobservant,rnalthough they did celebrate the Jewishrnholidays, perhaps as many putativernChristians still observe Easter andrnChristmas, without these Christianrnsolemnities having any real impact onrntheir thought or behavior. Quite strikingrnis his description of his childhood conceptrnof God: “My childhood image ofrnGod was, as I reflect on it six decades later,rnthe brooding, majestic, full-beardedrnfigure of Michelangelo’s Moses. He sitsrnslumped on what appears to be Hisrnthrone, pondering my fate and at thernbrink of disgorging His inevitably damningrnjudgment. This was my Jewish God:rnmassive, leonine, and forbidding.” Thisrndescription fits very well with the notedrnpsychologist Paul Vitz’s view that almostrnall serious atheists are the victims of abusivernor absent fathers. At a later period inrnhis life, during a stint in the Air Force, tornwhile away the idle hours he took a Biblernstudy course and “discovered that thernNew Testament God was a loving, forgiving,rnincomparably cosseting figure inrnwhom I would seek, and ultimately find,rnthe forgiveness that I have pursued sornhopelessly, for so long.”rnDuring his medical studies at McGillrnUniversity in Canada he had as a professorrnthe famous Jewish psychiatrist KarlrnStern, an emigre from Nazi Germany.rnThis relationship would have positivernconsequences decades later, whenrnNathanson began to examine morernclosely the arguments for Christianity:rnStern was the dominant figure inrnthe department: a great teacher; arnriveting, even eloquent lecturer inrna language not his own; and a brilliantrncontrarian spewing out originalrnand daring ideas as reliably asrnOld Faithful. I conceived an epicrncase of hero-worship of Stern, readrnmy psychiatry with the diligence ofrna biblical scholar, and in turn wasrnawarded the prize in jjsychiatry atrnthe end of my fourth year.. . .rnThere was something indefinablyrnserene and certain about him. Irndid not know then that in 1943, afterrnyears of contemplating, reading,rnand analyzing, he had converted tornRoman Catholicism.rnLater on Nathanson read Stern’s famousrnautobiography The Pillar of Fire and realizedrnthat the man “possessed a secret 1rnhad been searching for all my life, the secretrnof the peace of Christ.”rnIn subsequent chapters Nathanson relatesrna compulsive promiscuity, which resultedrnin his first encounter with abortion,rnone performed on his first girlfriendrnLIBERAL ARTSrnTHE 5-H CLUBrnAccording to the December edition of Pro-Family News, published in Niinneapolis byrnthe Minnesota Family Council, the state 4-H Club must now sign a statement declaringrnthat it will not discriminate on the basis of “sexual orientation.” Because the 4-Hrnprogram is run by the Minnesota Extension Service of the University ot Minnesota, itrnis subject to all the state’s civil rights laws. In order to have their clubs recognized atrnthe state level, club leaders are required to allow homosexuals to participate in all 4-11rnprograms and activities, including some involving youth under the age of 18. Whenrnvolunteer Joyce Stuewe asked Michael Charland, assistant director of 4-11 YouthrnDevelopment, if a gay man would now be eligible to take over leadership of the club,rnhe reportedly replied, “That’s correct.”rnand paid for by his father; the story of hisrnfirst two marriages; and, in what is perhapsrnthe most shocking and chilling incidentrnin the book, an abortion performedrnby himself on another of the womenrnwith whom he had affairs. But in timernNathanson saw clearly the scientific evidencernagainst abortion, due in great partrnto new technology which enabled him tornsee the child in the womb. What he hadrnbeen aborting by the thousands (hernestimates that he was involved, directlyrnor indirectly, in over 75,000 abortions)rnwas in fact a human being from the momentrnof conception. Consequently, hernstopped performing abortions, and becamernthe best-known advocate and convertrnto the pro-life cause in America.rnHe ends the book on a note of hope inrnChrist’s mercy, forgiveness, and offer ofrnsalvation. As is often the case in a storyrnof conversion, it is the prayers and personalrnexample of so many of his pro-lifernfriends and coworkers that over timernmelt down the resistance of a hardenedrnatheistic sinner so that he can see thatrnthere might be room in God’s heart evenrnfor the likes of him.rnThe Reverend C. ]ohn McCloskey lUrnis a priest of Opus Dei in Princeton,rnNew Jersey, and the United Statesrnrepresentative of the PontificalrnAtheneum of the Holy Cross.rnCity of Godrnby Philip JenkinsrnJerusalem: One City, Three Faithsrnby Karen ArmstrongrnNew York: Alfred A. Knopfrn471 pp., $30.00rnFor better or worse, British religiousrnwriter Karen Armstrong is rapidlyrnbecoming a publishing phenomenon.rnPartly because of the demographics of anrnaging baby boom, religious books are becomingrna very hot item on the best-sellerrncharts, ranging from reports of cuddlyrnangels who allegedly guard our steps,rnthrough the pour epater les bourgeois effortsrnof the Jesus Seminar and the like, tornvaluable popularizations of complex religiousrnthought and history. In recentrnyears, this last category has includedrn30/CHRONICLESrnrnrn