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Ludo’s Wilderness

Length: 348 pages5 hours


The story of a born adventurer from the Netherlands on his lifelong quest to become a missionary to China. With unyielding determination, Fr. Ludo pursued his dream through the battlefields of Europe during WWII and into the face of China's Cultural Revolution where it was not a safe place to be a Westerner - especially a Catholic priest.
Communist radicals pursued Ludo onto the last open runway in Peking where a military transport, under enemy fire, awaited the gentle priest. Fr. Ludo accepted his fate as he ascended into the turbulent skies over China with the same composure as donning his priestly vestments in preparation for The Sacrament.
From trekking across Europe and the Stepps of Mongolia to occupying a drafty makeshift lean-to rectory in a -50 F Canadian winter, and facing down armed Penitentes under the scorching sun of New Mexico, Father Ludo faced incredible challenges, not the least of which came from The Church itself.
Through all the adversity this man of faith encountered, Fr. Ludo stood like a rock against despair, even as the chronic pain of migraine headaches robbed him of sleep. Fr. Ludo's only respite from debilitating pain was his Great Outdoors adventures where his journey took him deeper and deeper into The Wilderness.
Under attack from his bishop and peers, Father Ludo never lost faith, though on the several occasions he pondered, "is this really part of the bargain" his inner voice insisted, "I made a vow, and I will stick to it for better or worse." From the age of 13 until his death at 95, Ludo never wavered from the path he had chosen at such a young age.
Fr. Ludo was a man of great faith. Belief helps when navigating some of the most treacherous waterways in the world, like the Mackenzie River in Canada, Lake Chelan in Washington State and the Gulf of Alaska - all solo without knowing how to swim!
Father Ludo consciously chose a lifelong vocation that turned into an adventure story. These are the memoirs he left us. Ludo was a man of the cloth for over eight decades whose life revolved around duty to The Church. Ultimately though, Fr Ludo's memoirs are an adventure story about a hearty ascetic who overcame incredible odds as he blazed a trail through The Wilderness.ness.

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