This was the beginning of the reign of Pope Pius VII (1800-1823)--one of the most difficult and confusing eras in Catholic history. At this time the military genius Napoleon Bonaparte was rising to power--a man of almost unbounded ambition. It was Pius VII's task to deal with this man, grateful for the strength he provided in a disintegrating world, yet careful to avoid getting swallowed up by his demands and ambitions.
In addition to examining the drama between Pope and Emperor, Professor Anderson also goes into many other high points of that eventful period: the restoration of the Jesuits, the Catholic Emancipation in England and Ireland, St. Gaspar del Bufalo's conversion of the bandits infesting the hills of Rome, and much more, plus--on the negative side--the workings of Jansenism, Gallicanism, Josephism and Regalism--all various forms of Liberalism.
This absorbing history will fascinate and inform anyone who wants to witness the Church's response to French Revolutionary forces and to understand Liberalism at work in its early days. Moreover, it gives an understanding of one of the most famous Popes in history, as well as an appreciation for Christ's protection of His Church through some of the most difficult times she has ever faced. For Pius VII outlived Napoleon and most of the Church's enemies--though unfortunately not Liberalism, which has perdured into our own time as a malignant growth in the bosom of society.
|By:||Byron (Covington, LA, August 10, 2009)|
|Review:||This excellent book provides an accurate and engaging account of one of the greatest popes in history and the chaotic times during which he reigned. His election was indeed providential, as the awesome challenges presented by the egocentric Napoleon required a pontiff who possessed the courage, grace, and vision embodied by Pius VII. This Christ-like pope should be given serious consideration for sainthood, and God willing this outstanding biography perhaps will generate momentum for that special cause. Best Uses: Gift, Older Readers, Reference, Travel Reading, Younger Readers; Cons: no complaints; Describe Yourself: Everyday Reader; Pros: Deserves Multiple Readings, Easy To Read, Engaging characters, Informative, Page-Turner, Well Written|