About the year 1098 a child was born in Germany. She was believed to be the tenth child of Merxheim-Nahet and Hildebert of Bermersheim. The child, Hildegard, was sickly from birth and plagued by visions. Those visions persisted throughout her life. As a woman and a nun, she was restricted from putting her experiences into writing until 1148 when Pope Eugenius granted her permission to record her visions.
It is Hildegard and her visions that are at the core of a series of historical fiction books written by Penetanguishene’s David Dupuis. David’s epic series unfolds before us an intriguing tale that weaves first-nation history, world and papal history, prophecy, fiction and saints. It is indeed a tale reminiscent of Da Vinci Code. The fact that Midland, Lafontaine, Huronia and Penetanguishene are among the featured locations in the series, is icing on the cake for we local folks.
Born and raised in Penetanguishene, David attended Georgian College in Barrie and studied Journalism. When he was a youthful 20-year-old, the sudden death of Pope John Paul I in 1978, moved him intensely and sparked an idea. He immediately started scrapbooking about the papacy and putting a story – about a boy who would become the last pope at the end of the world – to paper.
But, as life happens, David soon found himself pulled away with other things and the beginnings of the book was shelved. He had chosen nursing as a profession and spent the next 35 years as a psychiatric nurse. And the unfinished book remained on that shelf for decades.
But his love of history and writing stayed strong. A booklet he saw while visiting Peggys Cove in Nova Scotia in 1989 inspired him and he wrote a series of historical booklets that included Samuel de Champlain and Huronia, St Anne’s of Penetanguishene, Kitche-uwa’ne’, The Martyrs’ Shrine among others.
David also authored and co-authored books about hockey greats Red Kelly, Terry Sawchuk and Pierre Pilote.
He raised a family and volunteered in his community. But the story about the boy who would be pope was always swirling in the back of his mind. One day shortly after his retirement and at the encouragement of his grown children, the hand-written papers were retrieved from that shelf, and the story started to flow.
“I had been thinking and researching to find a seer to build the story around and one day, I came across information about Hildegard,” David explains. “When I went to bed that night, I was fairly certain she was it. But I became absolutely certain in the morning.” An early riser, he awoke and went to take in his usual morning view of the sunrise, which he photographed daily for his Facebook page. The rising sun over the water had seemingly transformed itself into the shape of a cross, an effect that lasted eight minutes, enabling him to take over 40 photos. For David, the meaning was clear; this was his sign that Hildegard was the perfect choice.
The Seven Keys of Hildegard is a historical fiction tale occurring between 1917 and about 2040 and based on seven complex and disturbing visions of Hildegard that were prophesied to come true in today’s times.
Can the church and the world be saved from political, economic, military, environmental, physical and spiritual assassinations? Can a boy, destined to be the last pope at the end of the world, save his church and the world from the Antichrist and his apocalyptic forces?
Intrigued? Me too!
The first three of David’s seven self-published books are available at Georgian Bay Books in Midland, on Amazon.ca and his book stand at Penetang Foodland.
Book four “Of Revelations” is expected to be released in November.
You can learn more about David and the Seven Keys series on his website