One Holy Night

General Fiction, Christian Books

By J. M. Hochstetler

Publisher : Sheaf House Publishers

ABOUT J. M. Hochstetler

J. M. Hochstetler
The daughter of Mennonite farmers, I grew up in the Kokomo, IN, area and graduated from Indiana University with a degree in Germanic Languages. I am a publisher, a professional editor, and a lifelong student of history. I am also the author of the American Patriot Series, the only accura More...


As on that night so long ago . . . in a world torn by sin and strife . . . to a family that has suffered heart-wrenching loss . . . there will be born a baby . . .  


It’s 1967, and the Vietnam War is tearing the country apart, slicing through generations and shattering families. Because of Japanese atrocities he witnessed as a Marine in the South Pacific during WWII, Frank McRae despises all Asians. Now his son, Mike, is a grunt in Viet Nam, and his wife, Maggie, is fighting her own battle against cancer. When Mike falls in love with Thi Nhuong, a young Buddhist woman, and marries her in spite of his father’s objections, Frank disowns him. Then, as Christmas approaches, Frank’s world is torn apart, and he turns bitter, closing his heart to God and to his family.  


But what Frank doesn’t know is that on this bleak Christmas Eve, God has in mind a miracle. As on that holy night so long ago, a baby will be born and laid in a manger—a baby who will bring forgiveness, peace, and healing to a family that has suffered heart-wrenching loss.

“J. M. Hochstetler makes another mark on Christian fiction with One Holy Night, a moving and inspirational tale of family, love, war, prejudice, and heart-wrenching loss. Though I’m not usually interested in stories set during the Vietnam war, I quickly became caught up in the lives of Hochstetler’s characters and felt their joy, pain, and struggle to either hold tight to their faith or open their heart to God. Warning: The deeper you journey into this painfully honest tale, the more you’ll need a ginormous box of tissues close by. Very recommended!” —Tamara Leigh, bestselling author of The Redeeming


“J. M. Hochstetler dug deep into the well of emotions and came up with a story that strikes the heartstrings in a tender and yet also provocative manner. The characters are so well drawn, they’ve stayed in my mind long after reading the book, almost as if they were real people that I’ve known for a long time. Being the daughter of a Vietnam Vet, I also appreciated Hochstetler’s gentle handling of one of the most tumultuous times in our country’s history. And even though it’s set during the Vietnam era, there are lessons to be learned and truths to be taken away from this beautifully crafted story for today. Highly recommended.” —Kaye Dacus, author of Follow the Heart


“One Holy Night is powerful yet gentle in both its method and message. Set in the 1960s amidst the divisiveness of an unpopular war, a family’s very faith and foundations are tested as memories and cultures collide. Hochstetler’s ‘lighting the past . . . and leading you home’ signature couldn’t be more appropriate than in this sacred tale of hope rising sweetly from the ashes of sorrow. . . .” —Kathi Macias, author of Last Chance for Justice


I have found myself revisiting the characters regularly as if they were members of my own family. The rich characterization and lush description place the reader comfortably in the midst of the story setting: the heartland of America near the end of the Vietnam War. Any reader who can’t relate to this turbulent era in U.S. history will grow in understanding, and those who lived during that time will be reminded of the division it created. Amazingly, Hochstetler tackles several big issues—love, loyalty, war and death—while maintaining a positive thesis. Family can survive. Human love is grander in weakness than in strength. And faith is, by necessity, stronger in tragedy than in triumph. One Holy Night is a soon-to-be-classic ‘miracle story’ with an inspirational message that will warm your heart with love. It is a wonderful statement of faith and a gift of hope.” —Kathy Harris, author of The Road to Mercy


Within these pages you will discover the most beautiful modern-day essence of Christ’s nativity, mercy, and grace you’ve read in a very long while! Set amid the turmoil of the Viet Nam War, the McRae family’s story is one riddled with difficult situations and trials that rock the foundation of their faith. What do these images of war and turmoil have to do with the nativity? Well, the final battle is waged in Frank’s heart and mind during a Christmas Eve blizzard. The decision he makes that night determines life or death for two innocent people. As the story unfolds its final scenes, the reader is left with renewed hope in God’s sovereign design for each of our lives and His miraculous ability to bring good out of even the darkest circumstances. [Hochstetler] richly captures the turmoil surrounding the lives of those affected by the Viet Nam War, and the many emotional conflicts that raged on as a result of that war. I look forward to reading her other books, and I highly recommend this one to you!” — Kim Ford, Window to My World Blog


“One Holy Night contains a miracle that can change even the hardest of hearts. I was impressed at how Hochstetler let her characters talk about their faith to unbelievers without proselytizing. It's a perfect novel for Christmas with a story full of hope and love.” —Christy Lockstein, Christy’s Book Blog