The Two Popes

Francis, Benedict, and the Decision That Shook the World
Narrated by: John Lee
Length: 8 hrs and 47 mins
4.4 out of 5 stars (36 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

From the Academy Award-nominated screenwriter of Darkest Hour and The Theory of Everything comes the fascinating and revealing tale of two very different men - both of whom happen to live at the Vatican.

In February 2013, the arch-conservative Pope Benedict XVI made a startling announcement: He would resign, making him the first pope to willingly vacate his office in over 700 years. Reeling from the news, the College of Cardinals rushed to Rome to congregate in the Sistine Chapel to pick his successor. Their unlikely choice? Francis, the first non-European pope in 1,200 years, a one-time tango-club bouncer, a passionate soccer fan, a man with the common touch.  

Why did Benedict walk away at the height of power, knowing his successor might be someone whose views might undo his legacy? How did Francis - who used to ride the bus to work back in his native Buenos Aires - adjust to life as leader to a billion followers? If, as the Church teaches, the pope is infallible, how can two living popes who disagree on almost everything both be right? 

Having immersed himself in these men's lives to write the screenplay for the upcoming motion picture The Two Popes, Anthony McCarten masterfully weaves their stories into one gripping narrative.   

From Benedict and Francis' formative experiences in war-torn Germany and Argentina to the sexual abuse scandal that continues to rock the Church to its foundations to the intrigue and the occasional comedy of life in the Vatican, this audiobook glitters with the darker and the lighter details of one of the world's most opaque but significant institutions.

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying PDF will be available in your Audible Library along with the audio.

©2018 Anthony McCarten (P)2019 Macmillan Audio

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    2 out of 5 stars

Not Theologically Rigorous

Here's an example... The author writes: "An interesting dilemma attends this situation of having two living popes... papal infallibility. ...For two millennia, the church has striven to avoid having two living popes." But, the doctrine of papal infallibility was defined in 1870. The author is using the doctrine verily clumsily. Further, he says that "to homosexuals, [Pope Francis] offered the church's apology, ex cathedra." He did not. Again, that is invoking the doctrine of papal infallibility as if it meant 'everything the Pope says is gospel.' Very shallow. I was hoping for a deeply insightful meditation on two remarkable men. This reads like Dan Brown.

8 people found this helpful

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  • K
  • 01-22-20

More questions than answers

I can thank this book for one thing. It has thrown me headlong into seeking what of its contents are truth and what are conjecture, misunderstanding or simply false. I‘ll share my first Q&A. What is papal infallibility? The last infallible teaching in the Catholic Church was given by Pope Pius XII in 1950 defining the Assumption into heaven of the Blessed Virgin Mary after her death. The woman that the church defines as the pinnacle of all humanity. Papal infallibility has nothing to do with the day-to-day teachings, writings or personal inclinations of any pope, as the book implies over and over again. It is under very specific terms and is very rare... Google it for yourself

6 people found this helpful

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Love the book, great performance

Love the movie and have watched in multiple times. The book didn’t disappoint at all and added to the movie. Will listen to the audible book again.