Abby Johnson’s book UnPlanned is one of the most well-known stories of a former Planned Parenthood employee’s journey from the side of pro-choice to the side of pro-life. What we don’t realize is that there are other women who have made that same journey and even more women who want to make that journey but are scared to do so. Redeemed by Grace is the true story of Ramona Treviño’s journey from Catholicism to the lies of secularism and back to the truth of Catholicism. As the last stop on the blog tour for her book, I will be providing a general review.
Redeemed by Grace begins with Ramona’s first day of her first week as manager of a Planned Parenthood in Sherman, Texas. She was driving home; listening to Catholic radio, as she had been for the past several months; and opening herself to the Spirit, whether she knew it or not. All of a sudden, it hit her. What she was doing was wrong! She was not helping young girls, but instead she was making their lives worse. Tears poured from her with no end in sight, but God’s voice told her that it wasn’t too late to turn her life around. The book then flashes back to 1985 when Treviño was a little girl and her first inquiry into God’s existence and presence in her life. Subsequent chapters detail harsh moments in her life, including getting pregnant at sixteen, marrying into an abusive marriage, and divorce. We also learn of her involvement and advancement in Planned Parenthood and the glorious story of her escape from the lie that is Planned Parenthood.
Chapter 16: Resounding Trust was the chapter that brought everything into perspective for me. Here we see the childlike trust a wife and mother places in God. Ramona was no longer working at Planned Parenthood, so she was looking for a job to help her family that just went from two incomes to one income. She starts by selling insurance, but soon felt that she was preying on the elderly. She then moved to payday loans, but felt she was preying on the poor. She quit both jobs and had to trust in God that He would provide for her family. Monetary gifts rolled in from friends and people she didn’t even know. However, the birth of her third child, Philip, was the greatest proof of God’s love for her and her husband. That’s so simple but profound. Life is the greatest gift of all, and that message emanates from his book.
With a personal narrative writing style, this book can be read very quickly. If you are a reader of average speed, it will take you about a day. That’s not to say that this book is an easy read though. It was a hard read packed with emotion and sadness. You ultimately know where she is headed in her journey (toward God and the Catholic Church), but you have to experience the suffering with her before she gets there. When I first received this book, I put it on a shelf to read if I ever had spare time, because I wasn’t the target audience for this book. After reading it, I still don’t believe I am the target audience for it, but I am glad I read it.