THE WINNERS in “The Good Pope,” Contest are…
- Ana Santorini
- Carol Jean-Helena Hanson
- Joanne Shiha
- Bernadette Jimkoski
- Emily Armstrong
Congratulations to our winners and thank you again to everyone who participated and Harper One for sponsoring the contest. For those of you who didn’t win this time, we will be announcing a new giveaway soon.
CathNews USA is partnering with Harper Collins to give away five (5) copies of Greg Tobin’s The Good Pope: The Making of a Saint and the Remaking of the Church–The Story of John XXIII and Vatican II (a $17 value).
Fifty years after he convened the Second Vatican Council, Pope John XXIII remains one of the most beloved and remarkable figures in the history of the Catholic Church. Affectionately known as Il Buono Papa, or the Good Pope, John is remembered today by Catholics and non-Catholics alike as an enduring symbol of peace, ecumenism, and Christian spirituality.
In The Good Pope, Greg Tobin recounts John’s remarkable story, from his impoverished childhood in Bergamo, Italy, and his successful tenure as a papal ambassador in war-torn Europe to his surprise ascendancy to the throne of St. Peter. In the process, he traces John’s legacy as the spiritual father of the modern Church and explains why the Good Pope and his great council are as vital, vibrant, and important to Catholicism as ever before. Meticulously researched and engaging, The Good Pope captures the heart, soul, and spirit of the man who ushered in a new era of religion in the twentieth century.
See a brief Q&A with the author, Greg Tobin below.
There is no limit to how many times you enter to win. The five winners will be chosen by random drawing on Wednesday October 10, 2012 (see details below for how to enter).
What they’re saying about The Good Pope…
“You cannot understand contemporary Catholicism without understanding Pope John XXIII. Greg Tobin’s new marvelous book is a terrific introduction to the pope who changed the church, and to the man whose spiritual wisdom may change your life.” —James Martin, SJ, author of The Jesuit Guide to (Almost) Everything
“This is the best single volume on John XXIII and the events he set in motion 50 years ago, transforming the church and the world.”—David Gibson, author of The Rule of Benedict
“A beautiful and enlightening book about a humble priest who became one of the most powerful and beloved pontiffs in the history of Catholicism.” —Mary Higgins Clark, author of The Lost Years
HOW TO ENTER and WIN…
In order to win your copy just send us an email (click here) with the names and email addresses of any friends you’d like to introduce to CathNews USA’s daily email list (make sure you put the word CONTEST in the subject line). For every legitimate email address we receive you will get one entry into our random drawing. There’s no limit to the number of entries you can make, as long as each friend you suggest is new and hasn’t been submitted to us in previous contests. (We will only use the address for the purpose of inviting your friend to join our daily email list. It will not be shared with any third parties.) Send us the names and addresses of friends you’d like to invite via email at email@example.com. Contest runs for fourteen (14) days from 12:01am (est) on Wednesday September 26, 2012 to 12:01am (est) on Wednesday October 10, 2012, CONTEST HAS ENDED, Thanks to all who entered.
See full contest rules here.
Greg Tobin has written extensively about the papacy and Catholicism. His books include Selecting the Pope and Holy Father, the first biography of Benedict XVI to be published after the historic 2005 conclave. Tobin is currently vice president for university advancement at Seton Hall and has been featured widely in national and international media, including the New York Times, CBS, MSNBC, and FOX News. He is a graduate of Yale University.
Q: The Good Pope commemorates the 50th anniversary of Vatican II. Fifty years later, what do you think the council’s legacy is?
A: The legacy of the Second Vatican Council (1962-65) is immense, somewhat complicated, and very simple indeed. The council is still evolving and being absorbed and lived by the Church. It is a process that takes many decades. We see the legacy of the council in the liturgy; the recent revisions in the translations of prayers and responses in the U.S. is an example of that—a direct result of the council. Commitment to ecumenical dialogue with other Christian churches, including Protestant and Orthodox, became much more serious, and each of the popes after the council has pushed hard for progress in this dialogue. Perhaps most significantly, Jewish-Christian relations became a focus for the Catholic Church, with the document Nostra Aetate, the Declaration on the Church’s Relation to Non-Christian Religions (specifically Chapter 4, on “The Church’s Bond with the Jewish People.” There are (and will continue to be) ongoing debates within the Church about differing interpretations of a council that put so much on the table for us to savor and digest.
Q: What surprised you most about John XXIII during the course of your research?
A: I was most impressed—rather than surprised—by Pope John’s personal sanctity and high level of intelligence. He had a very high “emotional IQ,” in today’s parlance. This was apparent immediately upon his election in October 1958, and the world’s press picked up on it quickly; he was portrayed from the first as a pope who smiled and reached out directly to common people. It was one of those “coincidences” of history that the right man emerged at just the right time for the Church and the world. He had spent many years in the “East,” where Catholic, Orthodox and Muslim cultures co-existed and Jews were always a distinct presence in the community. Can we ever really understand what a man who had lived in Sofia, Istanbul and Paris must have been thinking during the conclave, locked up within the Apostolic Palace among his elderly brethren and sleeping on a supremely uncomfortable bed? The biggest surprise, perhaps, was that he was elected at all, but the cardinals (remember, there were only 55 of them at that conclave) knew what they were doing.
Q: Has your understanding of Vatican II changed as a result of writing the book?
A: I now understand better that Vatican II was the most important religious event of the 20th century and represented the most significant theological development in the Catholic Church since the Council of Trent some four hundred years earlier. I think I have a better understanding of the theological concept of the Holy Spirit in action, working through the imperfect minds and motives of human beings, in this case the council fathers—the nearly 3,000 bishops of the world at that time. It was a moment in the history of the Church that ranks with the Council of Nicaea, the Council of Trent and other times of crisis that required men to change their minds and hearts about the ways in which the Gospel message must be carried into all the world.
Q: What do you think John XXIII’s impression of the Church would be if he were alive today?
A: Pope John would be both saddened and heartened by today’s Church. I believe he would push for continued renewal of liturgical practices, Scripture scholarship, serious and continued ecumenical outreach. He would be very concerned about the state of religious congregations throughout the world—especially in the West. Perhaps he would want the Church to reexamine its policies on religious orders in order to bolster their role in the contemporary world (something that has happened periodically throughout the history of the Church). He would be optimistic about the future of the Church, which is undergoing trials and tests right now. If it is truly an institution of divine origin, as the Good Pope held without question, there is little that any one of us can do to damage it fatally—as hard as any of us may try through our own sins and shortcomings.
Q: What do you hope people take away from The Good Pope?
A: It occurred to me when I began writing the book that, for most people alive today (especially those under 40), Pope John Paul II is the pope. Benedict XVI has been in office for “only” seven years, but John Paul reigned for 26 and a half years. Therefore, Pope John XXIII is now a distant memory or an unknown figure to many—except as a name on the wall of many Catholic schools and churches. I think the greatest lesson I take from his pontificate, and from the man himself, is the notion that a Christian can be truly Peter the Rock as well as a man of intellectual subtlety and deep spirituality. Further, Pope John was unafraid to live out and proclaim his faith and would have done so as a rural parish priest with the same vigor and conviction, if that had been his calling, instead of to the Apostolic See. We can learn the value of spiritual simplicity and focus from him, in a big way.
Don’t forget…in order to win your copy just send us an email with the names and email addresses of any friends you’d like to introduce to CathNews USA’s daily email list (make sure you put the word CONTEST in the subject lineContest runs for fourteen (14) days from 12:01am (est) on Wednesday September 26, 2012 to 12:01am (est) on Wednesday October 10, 2012, so enter now! Good Luck!