This latest book by the internationally acclaimed investigative journalism team is their most intriguing work to date. Best-selling books by Górny and Rosikon have been translated into eight languages, including five richly illustrated investigative works published by Ignatius Press.
For this new work they had access to one of the most guarded institutions in the world - the Vatican Secret Archives.The authors tell of its turbulent history and its unique documents, familiarizing us with the real stories behind the most controversial events in the Church’s history including: the Knights Templar trial, the Crusades, the Inquisition, the Galileo Galilei trial, Pius XII's atti- tude towards the Holocaust, and much more.
In addition to preliminary archival research, they travelled to several countries, visiting places described in the documents, and met with numerous historians and experts. This brilliantly written book, illustrated with stunning photographs, is the result of several years' work. It is highly recommended reading for all those interested in historical riddles concerning events of major importance.
Based on extensive factual material, the book debunks numerous unjust stereotypes, black legends and distortions that have accumulated over the centuries about Catholicism.
"The Church is associated with mystery, which often demands clarification. One can find many solved puzzles in this book based on the Vatican archives, and also many original insights into cases shrouded in mystery, cases frequently falsified thanks to the 'black legends' about the Church over the centuries. Fascinating reading supported by excellent visual documentation."
--Krzysztof Zanussi, Film Director, LIFE FOR LIFE: St. Maximilian Kolbe and OUR GOD'S BROTHER: St. Albert Chmielowski
"A splendid book about important moments in Church history, described by Grzegorz Górny on the basis of Vatican archival materials, and masterfully illustrated by Janusz Rosikoń. A spiritual and aesthetic feast."
— Wojciech Roszkowski , Author, Shattered Mirror: The Fall of Western Civilization
"This not a tourist stroll in the Vatican archives, dusting off old manuscripts. It is an exceptionally colorful (literally!) account about tremors, earthquakes, and violent turbulences in Church history. But Jesus promised that 'the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.' What does that mean? The Church's strategy is based on expansion, not evacuation. Górny and Rosikoń are perfectly aware that 'in order to arrive at a fair assessment of the past, it is first necessary to establish the facts.'”
— Marcin Jakimowicz, Journalist, Sunday Guest
"Biased opinions, ideological deformations, and downright lies weigh heavily upon Church history, yet the majority of Catholics are not always aware of it. This book gives the lie to history's 'black legends,' using the most reliable sources – documents housed in the Vatican Secret Archives, and specialists on the subject."
— Włodzimierz Rędzioch, Author, Stories about John Paul II