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Publisher's Summary

Now, with an updated preface, the latest edition of the definitive biography of Pope John Paul II that explores how influential he was on the world stage and in some of the most historic events of the 20th century that can still be felt today.

"Fascinating...sheds light on the history of the 20th century for everyone." (New York Times Book Review)

Witness to Hope is the authoritative biography of one of the singular figures - some might argue the singular figure - of our time. With unprecedented cooperation from John Paul II and the people who knew and worked with him throughout his life, George Weigel offers a groundbreaking portrait of the Pope as a man, a thinker, and a leader whose religious convictions defined a new approach to world politics - and changed the course of history. As even his critics concede, John Paul II occupied a unique place on the world stage and put down intellectual markers that no one could ignore or avoid as humanity entered a new millennium fraught with possibility and danger.

The Pope was a man of prodigious energy who played a crucial, yet insufficiently explored, role in some of the most momentous events of our time, including the collapse of European communism, the quest for peace in the Middle East, and the democratic transformation of Latin America. With an updated preface, this edition of Witness to Hope explains how this "man from a far country" did all of that, and much more - and what both his accomplishments and the unfinished business of his pontificate mean for the future of the Church and the world. 

©1999 George Weigel (P)1999 HarperCollins Publishers, Inc.

Critic Reviews

"The book is rich in new detail....The book is well written and Weigel's command of the material is impressive." (Publishers Weekly

"A book that will become a standard for students of church history and that sheds light on the history of the 20th century for everyone." (The New York Times Book Review

"A tremendous achievement." (Washington Post

"Well-wrought and comprehensive." (Wall Street Journal)

What listeners say about Witness to Hope

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inspiring

A truely great and inspirational human being. i reccomend that every christian and non christian alike should listen to this book

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Exceeds expectations

Great content supported by well informed writer.
Narrator was awesome! I am listening to this again.

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  • Doug
  • 18-02-2007

The best biography of John Paul II

This is the best book on the greatest man of our time. I give it four stars only because it is abridged. Also it ends around 1998/1999, when it was originally published. I'd love to see an update with the rest of the story, and in an unabridged audio format.

11 people found this helpful

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  • sms
  • 20-08-2007

Outstanding

This is an incredible story; the story of a man who challenged adversity at every turn and rose to the occasion. I'm proud of this leader and his contributions to the beginning of this new millenium. I wish I could get the unabridged edition.

9 people found this helpful

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  • Andrew
  • 04-03-2013

If you want to learn more about Pope John Paul II

What did you love best about Witness to Hope?

This book gave me insight into the Pope that I did not have before. I really enjoyed learning more about him as a person!

4 people found this helpful

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  • Stephen Z
  • 30-07-2015

John Paul the Great Biography

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

There was a description of how generous the pope was in Poland, giving away his razor if he was given one. This demonstrates the beauty of his life, but also the detail that Weigel goes into.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Lobo
  • 06-07-2015

Outstanding!!

Well written, fascinating and inspirational biography on an outstanding man. St. Pope John Paul the Great, pray for us and our country!

2 people found this helpful

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  • David McConnell
  • 24-01-2015

Deep insights into a Pope I already respected.

My favorite is when John Paul II is elected, a moment that changed our world forever. Great narrator great book.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Steve, Detroit
  • 29-08-2010

Took me a while but worth it

Gosh I loved this audio book. It was so good. It does not include the Popes death and anything after. But the story is amazing. Highly recommend.

5 people found this helpful

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  • Chris Trummer
  • 03-06-2016

Outstanding!

A beautiful account of the life of the greatest man of the 20th century! A must read (or listen!) for anyone who cares about the history of the last century and the direction of the future, not only of the Catholic Church, but of the world.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Patricia
  • 18-12-2020

Abridged version

This is an abridged version and not what I wanted. Maybe next time indicate whether is it abridged or unabridged

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  • Fred Hayward
  • 11-12-2020

Time will tell...

My premonition is that 200 years from today, looking back, most of the world will agree that Karol Wojtyla was the greatest anthropologist and philosopher that ever walked the earth. It will take that long perhaps because the current prejudices against the other facts of his life, for example that he was also a brilliant theologian, a compassionate and pastoral Pope of the Catholic Church and declared a Saint, will take that long to fizzle out and give way to objectivity. His brilliant work on human anthropology and sexual expression known now as the “Theology of the Body” is enough by itself to urge me to make such a bold claim. His life accomplishments in other areas only augment the assertion. Time will tell. In the mean time I am grateful for this excellent abridged Audible edition of George Weigel's work, giving the world a chance to become better acquainted with the much celebrated Saint John Paul II in less than ten hours of listening. I doubt that I'd have made it through the over 1000 pages unabridged hard copy version, so I for one am happily in debt to both Mr. Weigel and the editors who made this "quick" edition available. As a student at the Theology of the Body Institute, it has greatly enriched my perspectives on this great friend and servant of God, whose work I shall continue to study and propagate as long as I'm able.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 07-05-2018

Recommend to all

This was a superb biography. Written so well by - it must be said - a great admirer of the Pope. I listened to the abridged audio book. Narrator was very good. Overall a very engaging book that I would recommend to everyone, Pope John Paul II was a very consequential leader.

1 person found this helpful

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