Using inside sources and extensive field reporting about the secretive, high-stakes world of international diplomacy, Vatican reporter Victor Gaetan takes readers to the Holy See to explicate Pope Francis's diplomacy, show why it works, and to offer readers a startling contrast to the dangerous inadequacies of recent U.S. international decisions.
Victor Gaetan is senior international correspondent for the National Catholic Register and a contributor to Foreign Affairs magazine, the Washington Examiner, America, and The American Spectator. He resides in Washington, DC.
Introduction: What Does Washington Fear About Pope Francis and Vatican Diplomacy?
Chapter 1: An Adaptable Network, Willing to Bleed
Chapter 2:Mission Beyond Religion
Chapter 3:Education of a Diplomat
Chapter 4: Sovereignty is the Ticket to the International System
Chapter 5:Diplomatic Classics, Rules of Thumb, and Modus Operandi
Introduction: The Mustard Seed: Jorge Bergoglio as Manager, Missionary, and Mystic
Chapter 6: Stifling War in Ukraine; Prioritizing Peace with Russia
2013 protests in Ukraine lead to a war that threatens over two decades of
relationship building between Rome and Moscow
Chapter 7:Mediating Cold War Quarrels: Cuba
2014 marks normalization of relations between the US and Cuba, a landmark agreement brokered by Rome
Chapter 8:Diminishing Division: Kenya
2015 finds Pope Francis in Kenya where he shares a simple gesture
Chapter 9:Letting War’s Victims Lead: Colombia
2016 clinches a peace deal signed by government and guerillas after over 50 years
of fighting; the Catholic Church helps define the agreement’s core concern
Chapter 10: Piecing Together the Middle East: Lebanon, Syria, Iran, Saudi Arabia2017 brings political crisis in Lebanon that cardinal-patriarch works to untie
Chapter 11:Unifying the Religion of the Lord of Heaven: China
2018 achieves agreement between Vatican and Beijing on bishop selection
Chapter 12: Piercing Hearts: South Sudan
2019 witnesses a pope on his knees kissing the feet of warlords
Informative, insightful and entertaining, he has produced a page-turner that will shed much light and offer fresh perspective on parts of Pope Francis' ministry that have received too little attention. . . .If you read one book on Pope Francis and the Vatican this year, read this one!
In God's Diplomats, the chapters on the history of Vatican diplomacy in individual countries are a must-read for anyone trying to understand why the Vatican works the way it does.
Gaetan's book fills a space never covered: by John Allen [renowned American Vaticanista], former Ambassadors, or Italian authors on the Holy See and diplomacy. Gaetan explains how and why the Vatican diplomatic corps works well and should be a model to US diplomacy.
This book is a must read for anyone wanting to understand the influence the papacy wields on global politics in the 21st century.
I expect God’s Diplomats will become a standard reference for scholars of the role of religion in international affairs, and benefit anyone who wishes to understand the impact of Vatican diplomacy, and its surprising ability to alter the views of world leaders as diverse as Vladimir Putin, George W. Bush, and Bashar al-Assad.
Illuminating, entertaining, and inspiring, God’s Diplomats is a major contribution to contemporary literature on Catholicism, international relations and the Francis pontificate.
I'm so impressed by the meticulousness of the research, the breathtaking pace at which Victor Gaetan guides the reader in God's Diplomats through one of the most complex labyrinths on earth (which constantly made me feel I was reading a great spy novel), and the deep faith reflected in his careful historical analysis.