We discovered the work of Father Furniss in some contemporary reviews of Mother Mary Loyola’s books, in which she was favorably compared to him. We recommend reading more about him in the Catholic Encyclopedia, but he was a pioneer in the area of catechesis for children back in the 1850s and 1860s. When we first found this book, our first reaction was that it was a bit dark for today’s children. But the more it lay on our hearts, we realized that now more than ever, our children need to establish the habit of thinking on the four last things: death, judgment, heaven…and hell.
One of the devil’s favorite ways of tempting us to follow him down the broad path is by convincing us there is no hell. Yet Christ himself admonishes us in the Gospels:
“And if thy hand scandalize thee, cut it off: it is better for thee to enter into life, maimed, than having two hands to go into hell, into unquenchable fire: Where the worm dieth not, and the fire is not extinguished.” (Mk. 9:42-43)
What better reminder can we have to remain on the narrow path, despite its hardships and sorrows, than a vivid picture of the torments awaiting us at the end of the broad path? The Sight of Hell is just such a picture. Based on scriptural passages and the accounts of the saints, this book seeks to describe for us—yes, even for children!—the very real horrors that await the wicked in this life.