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Hell on the Way to Heaven

4.46  ·  Rating details ·  89 Ratings  ·  22 Reviews
A heartbreaking, searing exposé of the Catholic church
This is the harrowing, true story of a mother's struggle for justice. Chrissie and Anthony Foster were like any other young suburban family, raising their three daughters, Emma, Katie, and Aimee in a quiet spot and educating them with what they hoped were the right values. In Chrissie's case, these values were bas
Paperback, 376 pages
Published October 22nd 2010 by Penguin Random House Australia (first published September 1st 2010)
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Nov 09, 2011 rated it it was amazing
If you ever wondered why the Catholic church is struggling to find new members then this book will give you a good insight as to why. This is the real life story of an everyday Aussie family who fought a brave and determined battle against the church. The story goes of a devote Catholic lady Chrissie Foster who meets the man of her dreams Anthony and after getting married they then have three daughters Emma, Katie and Aimee. Life for the family seems great with the girls at a Catholic run school ...more
Jennifer (JC-S)
‘We should have been suspicious but he was beyond suspicion because of his collar.’

If anyone wonders about the need for the current (Australian) Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, which was established in January 2013, reading this book will certainly help answer that question.

The role of the Royal Commission is to investigate how institutions like schools, churches, sports clubs and government organisations have responded to allegations and instances of child s
May 07, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This book serves as a WARNING. You can't put your trust in anyone. As a catholic, reading this disturbed me even more. And more to the fact, that it happened so close to home. So I will always now bravely question my faith and wipe my hands of it, because of the evil that surrounds it. The author is a mother, like any other good mother in suburban Melbourne. The hell that Chrissie Foster and her family went through are completely at the hands of a pitiful man (now deceased) named Kevin O'Donnell ...more
Dennis Fernandes
Oct 02, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This is the sadest story I have ever read. As a father of two children, this story totally destroyed me! If you ever needed proof that blind faith is deadly dangerous and the vatican is a pedophile safe house run by corrupt and perverted individuals that control a vast amount of power and money, I urge you to get this book.
Jun 24, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Paedophile priests, the damage they can do to a family. The heads of the churches knew what was happening. This family went to hell - all while still living. If you have doubts about how the church deals with this subject still, then read this book. Great book, an eye opener. Must read.
Aug 04, 2011 rated it really liked it
I can't believe what this family was put through by the Catholic Church.Shame on those so called Christian Priests.
Carol Wocker
Jul 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Thank you Chrissie Foster for writing this book and sharing the sadness that has been your life. This story reinforces my anger at the Catholic Church, I really don't understand how anyone can continue to support such an evil institution. I know most Catholics are good people, but why can you not just believe in your god without supporting this evil church. I have no religion, so the closet I would get to this would be my football club, Collingwood. If I found out one player had been protected b ...more
Alexia Schramm-Clark
Jun 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing
A real eye opener into the terrible abuse of two young primary aged girls by a Catholic priest and the demons that are unleashed.This heartbreaking real life story takes you on a shocking journey and uncovers many dark secrets within the Catholic church.
Apr 27, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I thought I would just skim a chapter or two and drop this back to the library - wrong, it was so absorbing, indeed deeply shocking, I read it right through, wanting to find out it wasn't true. This is a very personal account of two girls' encounter with a depraved priest and their family's unbearable stuggle for justice with the Catholic Church. I can't begin to understand how the family was able to get through this ordeal. It certainly puts a human face to the "abuse scandal" - understatement. ...more
Lyn O'Brien
Aug 30, 2010 rated it really liked it
This is a heartbreaking and powerful true story. My friends story about her families betrayal by the Catholic church is a shocking account to read. The survival of this family and their determination to publicise the appalling response of the Catholic hierarchy to child sexual abuse by its priests makes for painful reading.
Hell on the way to Heaven

A very confronting account that has opened my eyes and added understanding to the snippets I've read/seen in the media. I'm gobsmacked at the Church's actions, angry and disappointed. I'm so saddened for those that have suffered from the abuse. Crimes against children are despicable.
Ange Robinson
Jan 06, 2013 rated it it was amazing
What a heart breaking read, so important that these stories are shared though!!! Never ever have blind faith and trust in anyone, organization or religious being that is the lesson driven home for me in this sad, sad story of ongoing destructive and very criminal behaviour permitted and facilitated by the Catholic Church, across decades!!! You will not be the same after reading this book!
Dec 09, 2010 rated it really liked it
So heartbreaking - well written...this is the sister of a friend of mine - so hard to imagine how she survived this - the human spirit inspires me and the inhumanity of the church disgusts me...I will never enter another Catholic church in my life without thinking of Chrissie's story...
Mar 16, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Heartbreaking. Hard to comprehend how this family could be put through all they did. I couldn't put this book down, even though I knew what was coming I just kept hoping for a different outcome. A real eye-opener & the Foster family is a true inspiration.
Sharon Flight
Jan 06, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Emotional story of a parents love for their children,
and a mother's fight to get justice for her children.
The fight this mother has to have is made a lot harder due to the catholic Church
denials. This is a true story, and her fight for justice should never have had to be this hard!!
Mar 10, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Incredibly harrowing and traumatic - and I am only a reader. This poor family and the tragedy they have been through. A must read in this time.
Karen Smith
Jul 28, 2014 rated it liked it
I found this book very disturbing. Whilst we need to know these things, as a parent I could not imagine what this family went through and the injustice of it all
The cover up by the Catholic Church.
Erin Donohue
Aug 09, 2016 rated it liked it
One of the most heartbreaking books I've ever read
Oct 01, 2012 rated it really liked it
Nov 13, 2012 rated it really liked it
A horrifying account of the devastating consequences of child-abuse by the clergy.
Debbie Peut
Feb 23, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
How my heart bled for this family and the evil injustice of their experiences. George Pell sickens me to the core!
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Sarah Lisle
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Maciej Radochonski
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Aug 19, 2017
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