From thieves and extortionists to mass murderers and warmongers, up-close and embarrassingly personal snapshots of those sanctified people with the most unsaintly pasts in the history of Christianity.
Saints are not born, they are made. And many, as Saints Behaving Badly reveals, were made of very rough materials indeed. The first book to lay bare the less than saintly behavior of thirty-two venerated holy men and women, it presents the scandalous, spicy, and sleazy detours they took on the road to sainthood.In nineteenth- and twentieth-century writings about the lives of the saints, authors tended to go out of their way to sanitize their stories, often glossing over the more embarrassing cases with phrases such as, “he/she was once a great sinner.” In the early centuries of the Church and throughout the Middle Ages, however, writers took a more candid and spirited approach to portraying the saints. Exploring sources from a wide range of periods and places, Thomas Craughwell discovered a veritable rogues gallery of sinners-turned-saints. There’s St. Olga, who unleashed a bloodbath on her husband’s assassins; St. Mary of Egypt, who trolled the streets looking for new sexual conquests; and Thomas Becket, who despite his vast riches refused to give his cloak to a man freezing to death in the street. Written with wit and respect (each profile ends with what inspired the saint to give up his or her wicked ways), Saints Behaving Badly will entertain, inform, and even inspire Catholic readers across America.
A finger, a lock of hair, a crucifix, a chalice—if such items belonged to a saint, they are considered to be relics and as such are venerated by the Catholic Church. Anyone who thinks that relics are remnants of the Middle Ages should log on to eBay. On any day of the week the online shopper will find a thriving business in the sale of these items, ranging from the dust from the tomb of Christ to splinters of the True Cross to bone fragments of countless holy men and women. In Saints Preserved: An Encyclopedia of Relics, author Thomas J. Craughwell takes us on an exhilarating journey through the life and death of more than three hundred saints and along the way enlightens us about the sometimes strange bits and pieces that the saints left behind.
     Including entries on the famous (Saint Peter, Saint Francis, Saint Thérèse of Lisieux) and the not so famous (Saint Foy, Saint Sicaire, Saint Chrysogonus), Saints Preserved also features information on such notable relics as the Holy House where Jesus, Mary, and Joseph lived; the Crown of Thorns; the Holy Grail; and the seven places that claim to possess the head of Saint John the Baptist—among them a mosque in Damascus. Moreover, this book includes major relics that are enshrined in the United States—for example, the complete skeleton of the Roman martyr Saint Vibiana enshrined in a cathedral in Los Angeles.
     From the extraordinary Aachen relics to the remains of Saint Zita, Saints Preserved is an indispensable compendium for spiritual seekers, history buffs, and anyone interested in deepening their understanding of the Catholic faith.
On March 13, 2013, the world waited in hushed anticipation for the announcement of the new Successor of Peter and leader of the Roman Catholic Church. For weeks the news had been filled with discussions and speculation of leading papabili. Now, finally, the new pope would be revealed.

But when Jorge Mario Bergoglio appeared the world was momentarily stunned. Who was this humble Cardinal from Argentina who emerged onto the loggia, choosing the name Francis, in honor of St. Francis of Assisi?

In Pope Francis: The Pope from the End of the Earth best-selling author Thomas J. Craughwell explores the life of Pope Francis, including his birth and early years "at the end of the earth" in Argentina; his mystical experience as a teenager that drew him to religious life; his years as a priest and bishop with a heart for the poor and marginalized; and his unflagging courage to teach and defend the Catholic faith.

Pope Francis: The Pope from the End of the Earth includes over 60 full-color photographs, a fascinating in-depth biography, Foreword by Cardinal Sean O'Malley, first homilies as Pope, and supplemental sections on Catholic beliefs, practices, and traditions.

This beautifully-illustrated volume will answer your questions about the humble Cardinal from Argentina who has ascended the throne of Peter and stepped onto the world stage. And it will remind you always of this historic event the election of the first Jesuit pope, the first to take the name Francis, the first brought to Rome from the end of the earth.
DIV What were they thinking? • In an effort to put an end to Britain and France’s policy of seizing American ships and sailors, Thomas Jefferson calls for an embargo. The Result: 30,000 sailors put out of work; mercantile families bankrupted overnight; a nationwide economic depression; and the New England states, which depended heavily on international commerce, threaten to secede from the Union. • To promote the doctrine of popular sovereignty, Franklin Pierce approves the repeal of the Missouri Compromise and permits residents of Kansas and Nebraska to decide whether their territories will admit slavery. The Result: Dozens of settlers murdered; Lawrence, Kansas, burned and looted; John Brown elevated to the status of national hero among abolitionists; the country moves closer to civil war. • Convinced the 20,000 men, women, and children of the Bonus Army were Communists and criminals, Herbert Hoover sends 600 crack troops, a detachment of cavalry, and five tanks to drive the protesters out of Washington. The Result: 4 dead, including two infants; more than 1,000 injured; the Communist Party in America enjoys a public relations field day; Hoover is driven into political exile. • In an effort to install a capitalist government in the Middle East, stabilize the region, and protect America from a possible Iraqi terrorist assault using weapons of mass destruction, George W. Bush orders the invasion of Iraq. The Result: More than 4,000 American soldiers and personnel dead; estimated hundreds of thousands of Iraqi civilians dead; hundreds of billions of dollars spent; the torture of prisoners in the Abu Ghraib prison and the failure to find weapons of mass destruction leave American global credibility in tatters. /div
"The Greatest Brigade is an exciting journey through the major battles of the Civil War alongside the members of the famed Irish Brigade. Well researched, compellingly written, filled with fascinating illustrations, and with a story that holds the reader with a 'bulldog grip,' Thomas Craughwell has written a regimental history that deserves to be on every Civil War lover’s bookshelf."—Jason Emerson, author of The Madness of Mary Lincoln and Lincoln the Inventor

Faugh a Ballagh! Clear the Way!

This is the story of a band of heroes that covered the Yankee retreat at Bull Run, drove the Confederates from the Sunken Road at Antietam, and made charge after charge up Marye's Heights at Fredericksburg. The gallantry of the Irish Brigade won them the admiration of the high command of both North and South, earned them seven Medals of Honor, and after the war, went a long way to helping the Irish assimilate into the American mainstream.

Shouting their Gaelic battle cry, the men of the Irish Brigade charged across the bloodiest battlefields of the Civil War and into the realm of legend. The Greatest Brigade is a grand narrative history of these Irishmen who fought in every major battle in the Eastern Theater of the Civil War, including Bull Run, Antietam, Fredericksburg, Gettysburg, the Wilderness, and Appomattox.

Thomas J. Craughwell, author Stealing Lincoln’s Body and The Buck Stops Here: The 28 Toughest Presidential Decisions and How They Changed History, reveals the reasons why thousands of Irish Catholics—the most despised immigrant group in America at the time—rallied to the Union cause and proved themselves to be among the most ferocious fighters of the war. He examines the character of the Irish Brigade’s two most popular commanders, Michael Corcoran, a man of unshakable principles, and Thomas Francis Meagher, a complex man with many fine qualities—and almost as many flaws.

DIV The Buck Stops Here consists of twenty-eight engrossing accounts of the most important United States presidential decisions in history. They range from the abolition of slavery with the Emancipation Proclamation to the acquisition of vast new territory with the Louisiana Purchase to the establishment of enduring institutions such as Medicare and America’s national parks. These decisions encompass, too, such less-well-known measures as the G.I. Bill of Rights, which cleared the way for more than two million veterans to receive a college education, as well as acts that reverberated worldwide, including Theodore Roosevelt’s construction of the Panama Canal, Harry S Truman’s deployment of the atom bomb, Richard Nixon’s visit to China, and John F. Kennedy’s pledge to put a man on the moon. Thomas J. Craughwell and Edwin Kiester Jr.’s fascinating survey of twenty-eight crucial presidential decisions opens a door into the White House’s corridors of power, giving readers an insider’s view of how and why these decisions were made, while providing a yardstick with which we might, perhaps, gauge the success of current and future presidents. Each chapter places the reader squarely in the historical period while presenting the issues at stake, the interests at work, and the obstacles encountered. This book takes the reader into the minds of some of American history’s greatest leaders and analyzes the enduring, often far-reaching, sometimes unforeseen consequences of these presidential decisions—in their own time, and right up to the present day. Some of these decisions were simply expedient; others required the courage of conviction in the face of intense opposition. Some were motivated by political loyalties, but many were evidently inspired by noble visions of a better nation, a fairer world. All were momentous, and helped define who we are and how we live now. /div
A riveting lineup of the world's most famous and infamous arrests, from Lizzie Borden (double murder) to Lindsay Lohan (DUI) to Roman Polanski (unlawful sexual intercourse)

Although the headlines fade, the humiliation, vulnerability, and sometimes chilling smugness of the alleged criminal in the mug shot stands the test of time. Covering 150 years of run-ins with the law, Busted reveals more than 500 of the most famous, disturbing, and just plain pathetic mug shots ever recorded. Subjects from all walks of life face front and turn to the left in this enthralling slice of social history. Among the alleged perpetrators are James Brown (carrying an unlicensed weapon and assaulting a police officer), Lenny Bruce (obscenity), Bill Gates (running a red light, driving without a license), Al Capone (tax evasion), Jeffrey Dahmer (rape, torture, murder, cannibalism), Eminem (assault), Mick Jagger (drugs charges), Malcolm X (burglary), Al Pacino (carrying a concealed weapon), Charles Barkley (disorderly conduct), Frank Sinatra (morals charges), Bernie Madoff (securities fraud, investment adviser fraud, mail fraud, wire fraud, money laundering, perjury, making false filings with the SEC, theft from an employee benefit plan), Bugsy Siegel (gambling and bootlegging), Tupac Shakur (sexual assault), Roger Clinton (drug dealing), and hundreds more.

The date of the arrest is provided, along with the fascinating, shocking, and sometimes ludicrous stories of the circumstance that led to the arrest, as well as occasional details of the trial and punishment (or merely the humble apology) that followed. Impossible to turn away from, Busted is the perfect coffee-table or gift book for our celebrity-obsessed society.
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