This is not a piece of fluff to mindlessly lose yourself in. It is full of real history woven into a story that takes place in one of the more turbulent times in modern American history, when the Civil Rights movement was breaking out, and protests and riots were part of the scene.
Pyle did a masterful job of portraying the sincere optimism, and the dark hypocrisy of the times; the hope and commitment for change on one side and the desperate desire to prevent that change on the other. Martin Luther King and the assassination of President Kennedy marked that time in history, and the John Birch Society and the Ku Klux Klan represented the desire for status quo.
The Stone House Legacy portrays the hopes and dreams of the twentieth century Reverend Simon and Tessa Kingsley parallel to those of Reverend and Cora Herrald who had lived 100 years earlier. They are linked by a diary that Tessa finds in the old stone house on the property Simon has selected to establish a Center for Leadership and Understanding on. He vision is that people of different faiths and beliefs will come together to examine the role of the Church as it relates to advances in science and technology, democratic government, and racial and religious tolerance.
In 1864 Reverend Herrald had led his group to this same piece of property, with an idealist vision for his time. Cora had kept a diary from the time of their arrival at the place they called Serenity in 1864, until they left, brokenhearted and defeated in 1866.
Simon Kingsley is the pastor of one of the biggest churches in Indiana. He also has his own broadcast. He is beloved by the parishioners until he embraces the right for equality for all and the Civil Rights movement. High profile members of the church are disquieted at first, then alarmed and finally outraged.
Times become uncomfortable for the Kingsey’s as they are plotted against. Tessa finds comfort and guidance from reading this record written a century ago.
How much will Simon Kingsley endure to realize his dream?
This is an intriguing book. As I read, I was reminded of how deceitful people can be and how far some will go to keep things they want them. Lies, corruption, and murder.
I highly recommend this book.
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