Near-death bestseller: Heaven is for Real

I just started reading a wee book about an almost-four-year-old who was deathly ill and who, after painful treatment and ultimate recovery, later started chatting up his pastor-daddy about Jesus holding him on his lap, etc. I’m not averse to near-death experiences as mom had one, leaving her body and watching the doctors and nurses pull her back to life. This book is a great recounting of near-tragedy through the dad’s eyes; and his charming child’s recollection of His experiences in Heaven. The first thing he blurted out was about Jesus’ “markers,” the red marks on Christ’s hands and feet which the child didn’t know were from the Crucifixion. There are lots of observations that make this tale consonant with Catholicism and I hope all separated brethren can be drawn closer to the Christ’s Church through this book. It’s a New York Times bestseller and both heartbreaking and heartwarming.

The boy, now 11, and his Dad were interviewed on Fox and Friends yesterday. He reported that he met his sister. After the operation, he announced to his Mom that he met his sister who had died in her tummy. The Mom was astonished because this was something he would not have known about because he was just about four years old and it was something that was not discussed. She asked him who had told him and he said no one. He had met her with God who had adopted her and she was very happy in heaven.
Another interesting book on the subject of NDEs is MESSGES: SIGNS,VISITS, and PREMONTIONS from LOVED ONES LOST on 9/11 by Bonnie McEneaney whose husband was killed in the Towers.
HEREAFTER staring Matt Damon, directed by Clint Eastwood, also explores the subject.
I hear more and more regarding NDEs. We were discussing them last week in Bible study. Makes me wonder if we’re being told to prepare. :getholy::crossrc:

One of the things I find intriguing about near death experiences is that everybody’s story seems to be about the same. They all experience something similar. To me, that tells me that there might be something to it.


My great-grandfather had a near death experience. He died on the operating table for a short time and felt himself raise out of his body and just linger in the room. He said he then just watched the doctors and nurses working on him from a few feet above them. When he recovered from surgery and started talking to the nurses about what he saw. They were skeptical until he started to tell them what they all said and done while he was dead on the operating table. They couldn’t explain it, and they told him that there is no way he could have known what they were doing and saying during that operation.

The thing I noticed about NDE’s is that many (not all) people experience the white light and tunnel. All very similar. However, the saints who have been given visions of what happens after we die are VERY different. Most are quite frightening experiences. I have a great respect for our saints and feel they are a gift from God. They help us on our journey on the straight and narrow path. On the other hand, I think Lucifer manipulates situations (NDE’s) to appear that heaven is very easy to obtain, therefore, we don’t really have to be that good here. :shrug:

Kinda off topic, but I always wonder about these people who you see on tv (who can “talk” to the dead). Lisa Williams is one that pops in my head. She always tells the family of the deceased that they are at peace. And she is always so convincing because she knows personal information. I think the devil or his minions are behind this because they want us to believe our loves ones are okay and consequently, we will not pray for them.

Yesterday, at a talk on prayer given by the parish priest, he related a story of an elderly woman he was visiting in a hospital. He told her “Don’t worry. You’ll be out of here quickly.” She summoned him over to her bed and whispered, “I’m NOT going home. I’m going to Jesus.”

About 15 minutes later she died with a beautiful smile on her face. Before she passed, she was focused on the area around the foot of her bed. The priest said he’s sure Christ or someone in her family had come for her.

Hospice nurses are very familiar with this experience where the patient feels they are being called by a deceased relative. They actually advise the family that this might happen and not to fear it. I find it very comforting.

I just read this book and loved it. I was a bit concerned because Colton mentioned that everyone had wings. He said his great grandfather had HUGE wings and he had tiny wings. We all know that in heaven we do not become angel…we are either human or we’re angels. A friend of mine said that perhaps God did this so a child could understand. But don’t you think we understand everything in heaven? Help me understand this. Everything else in this book seemed right, but I can’t reconcile with this one thing.

regarding the wings…could he have seen the guardian angel’s wings and mistaken it for wings on him or his great grandfather?

Plus, aren’t our bodies and souls not going to merge until the end of time? Its possible that God allowed Colton to see his sister and great grandfather, but in reality, they are more in “spirit” form because bodies and souls have not merged.

Thank you! That is possible. I had also wondered about souls being united to bodies…not yet! :slight_smile:

I’ve been having the same questions about the wings–not to mention the rainbow colored horse. I think I’d have to say that his descriptions are influenced by his young age in some ways, but the book really does ring true for me in most respects. Even though it’s a popular book on faith, I found it in (thankfuly) in a completly different category than other recent hits like…* The Shack*.

By the way, Dinesh D’Souza’s Life After Death: The Evidence is a good book on this general topic, too. Still, I think I found the simplicity and honesty of the child’s account to be even more persuasive.

I haven’t read the book, but I think it’s possible that some aspects of the boy’s experience have been embroidered a bit to make the book more commercially appealing.

Reading it now…

Curious to know…what did you think???

I have no doubt that Heaven exists…

Having had 2 recent deaths in my immediate family, I ponder this a lot…

What did you think about this book? Too superficial? Really comforting?

Just curious!

Thanks in advance!!!

No, have not read it. Is it a good book? Who is the Author? Is the Author Catholic? Just curious.

The author is a protestant minister…
It is his story of his 4 yo’s son’s illness and near death experience
The author is Todd Burpo

Hmmmmm sounds interesting. Thanks.

I read the book. It was a light, quick, easy read. For what it is worth, it is a hopeful, uplifting book.

Links to some other CAF threads on the book follow, just FYI. There may be more, but a quick search turned up these. I think most opinions/reviews were positive.

“Heaven is for Real” book by Todd Burpo

The book “Heaven is for Real”

Heaven is for real

Heaven is for Real

Near-death bestseller: Heaven is for Real

I read it in an afternoon.

I thought it was comforting. I loved how the child described his great grandfather…
and I loved how the child said that Akiane’s painting ‘prince of peace’ is what Jesus looks like.

I love Akiane’s art! We heard about Akiane several years ago and my daughter wanted one of her books because she loves art, particulary loved Akiane’s works and is about the same age as Akiane. (I think my daughter was 10 at the time and is now 15, so she is a bit younger than Akiane.) We only have the one book, but Akiane’s story, art and poetry are amazing!

Sorry for the digression. Back to the thread.:slight_smile:

I love it too.

Amazing… just amazing.
Gives me goosebumps to look at ‘prince of peace’.

Thank you so much for posting these links…

I have started the book…It’s good…But really wanted some “Catholic perspective…”

This helps…

Thanks again!!!:slight_smile:

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