Lorehaven News: Summer Reads, Church Demons, and End Times

Peretti exposes church demons, we get re-enraptured, and summer quests beyond…
on May 30, 2024 · Series: ,

Warmest greetings!

Looks like I’m finally keeping up with monthly updates. They seem the best way to share new quests in the Lorehaven Guild, that ancient castle (on Discord) that you as a reading hero can join.

But first, what books are you enjoying this summer?

Myself, I’m swimming in the deep end of sci-fi novel line edits. But I’m also finding time for early reads of friends’ novels and nonfiction, plus print and audiobook reads of new or favorite creations like:

  • Stephen Lawhead’s fantasy Merlin
  • Howard Pyle’s flowery The Story of King Arthur and His Knights
  • G. K. Chesterton’s classic Orthodoxy
  • A certain 1999 supernatural thriller

Speaking of which …

The Visitation (1999), original cover

😈 Pastors vs. false christs vs. demons

Friends will tell you: I’m excited about our next quest starting this Monday, June 3. It’s for a Frank Peretti novel called The Visitation.

This supernatural thriller released 25 years ago. But if you’ve ever:

  • challenged hypocrisy,
  • struggled with “church stuff,”
  • questioned why God seems silent,
  • suffered the loss of someone you prayed for,
  • undergone something like real spiritual abuse,
  • or wondered if you should “deconstruct” your faith

… then you need to read The Visitation today.

It’s about a Pentecostal pastor named Travis Jordan who burns out of ministry in a small American northwest town. But the story is not just about his struggle with “church stuff.” It’s also about the people around him who are craving a miracle, a sign or wonder, anything but their monotonous or painful lives.

That’s when the false christ rolls into town. And as he explains to Travis, he can do it better. He can really heal people, build a big ministry in weeks, and “take this town for Christ.” In fact, he can be a better Jesus than the real Jesus.

If you think that sounds like satanic stuff, you’d be right. After all, Peretti is no stranger to demons. He’s famous for novels that broke Christian-fiction ground.

But in The Visitation, the devilish hosts hide in plain sight. We get no cutscenes for angels popping out of walls or boss-battling the prince of Babylon. In truth, the heroes are deeply human. They include Christians from denominations with many flaws, and many non-Christians who kinda believe religious stuff but mainly want to make a living. They’re small-town folks who want big thrills.

I first read this novel in June 1999, the month it released. At first I felt a little disappointed. Where were the angel/demon battles and special effects? Do we have to follow the humans all the time? I wanted something more fantastical.

Then I realized that Peretti, from inside a story about true and false miracles, was discipling me. For a clear Moral at the End? Not at all. Instead, I learned…

Well, that would be telling. I’d rather have you join the Quest! Here’s how:

  1. Subscribe free to Lorehaven (if you’ve not already)
  2. Join the Lorehaven Guild (on Discord)
  3. Find #⛪-the-visitation book quest
  4. Follow the Order of Service for updates

You can also read our book review and listen to the podcast episode.

Speaking of Fantastical Truth

💥 This summer, listen to Left Behind Legacy

We’ve spent years preparing a place to celebrate another book anniversary.

You see, back in March 2004, it turns out Jesus returned, not just for a Rapture event, but before the eyes of all—at least anyone who survives to the end of a seven-year Tribulation in the final(?) Left Behind novel Glorious Appearing.

So we thought we’d have some 20-year anniversary fun on the podcast.

Behold, we show you a mystery! Starting on Tuesday, June 11, Fantastical Truth will debut its Left Behind Legacy series. At least six episodes will feature:

  • a just-for-fun heated end-times debate
  • a former Tyndale House marketing insider
  • creators of the cinematic Left Behind audio dramas
  • authors of the Left Behind and Left Behind: The Kids series

There will be beasts. Plagues. Surprise guests! Charts with arrows!

To join this meeting in the airwaves, hearken to the sound of Fantastical Truth.

Finally, speaking of reunions …

Realm Makers 2024🥇 Lorehaven returns to Realm Makers

We’re planning our open world at the Realm Makers conference, in person July 18–20 in St. Louis, Missouri, and also livestreaming. Every conference features a vendor hall where fans can meet their favorite Christian fantastical creators.

Lorehaven would never miss this event.

So if you’re going to Realm Makers, or anywhere near St. Louis for the open house on Saturday, July 20, come see us! I’ll be there. Plus our new quest-giver (my wife Lacy), Marian Jacobs, Zack Russell, Jenneth Dyck, and many more from our creative team. Oh, and this time, we will share quests for the open world.

As soon as we’re ready, we shall reveal more, including the fantastical prizes.

With that, I’m off for reading, writing, and hopefully no overheating.



E. Stephen Burnett explores fantastical stories for God’s glory as publisher of Lorehaven.com and its weekly Fantastical Truth podcast. He coauthored The Pop Culture Parent and creates other resources for fans and families, serving with his wife, Lacy, in their central Texas church. Stephen's first novel, a science-fiction adventure, launches in 2025 from Enclave Publishing.

What say you?