Friday, November 19, 2010

Holy Ghosts: Or How a (Not So) Good Catholic Boy Became a Believer of Things that Go Bump in the Night

I've always kind of believed in ghosts. I'd hear stories of people's ghosts and they'd sound believable. My mom once brought home a picture that was taken in a friend's basement and you could clearly see the silver outlining of a man in a hat holding a shovel. Then, about a year ago, the hubby and I started watching Ghost Adventures on the Travel Channel. Three guys travel to some of the most haunted places in the world, get locked in overnight, walk around with night-vision cameras and high-powered digital recorders and catch shadows, lights, voices, noises, etc. If you get us going, we can talk about that show for a long time. The things these guys have experienced - intelligent conversations, scratches on their bodies, objects moving when no one is around - there's no way it could be fake. (If we're watching it before bed, we have to watch something funny afterward for a bit, or I will have ghost dreams.)

My husband found this book online, and because of our recent fandom of ghost stories, bought it and read it. He really enjoyed it, so I gave it a go, too. Author Gary Jansen is an editor at Doubleday Religion, a pretty devout Catholic (though he swears like a sailor) and is/was studying to be a deacon. So, here's a man who really believes in his Bible. And then he started feeling very weird in his own house. Electricity running over his body, cool breezes, dark shadows. His kid's toys would make noise by themselves. Weird, weird stuff.

As a natural researcher, he read as much as he could about ghosts. He wasn't convinced at first that he had ghosts (wouldn't he be a bad Catholic if he believed in ghosts?), but as he did his reading, he found there were actually more ghost stories in the Bible and religious texts than he realized. And, as more and more weird, creepy things started happening in his house, the more he couldn't deny that something "bigger" was going on than just creaks and groans of an old house and malfunctioning batteries.

He calls up the real Ghost Whisperer for some help. Now, while I think I believe in ghosts, I've never been very certain about psychics or ghost whisperers. But, this lady is the real deal. If everything Jansen writes is true, and I believe it is, this woman is amazing at what she does. She helps him, that's all I'll say.

I don't want to spoil the story by going into what/who is haunting his house, but it's pretty awesome, and the reasons why and the coincidences that appear - it seems insane, really. The book is quick. I skimmed some parts where he talks a lot about his research. While it's interesting, I just wanted to read about the present-day ghost story happening right in his own house, so I would try to hurry and get to those parts. If you like ghost stories, this is a real-life one that's pretty entertaining.

Do you believe in ghosts? Know any good ghost stories?


willikat said...

You know I do! I have recent ghost stories of my parents' house!!! Remind me next time I see you. :)

Maega said...

I think I do but don't really want to admit it :) I think wr have a night gost. Likes to hang during diaper changes...