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38 of 44 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Why did this wonderful man have to die?
I am not a Christian. In fact, despite my deep interest in the history of religion, I am a staunch agnostic. Yet if there was ever a human being who, had he been granted more time, could have changed the world for the better, it was Papa Albino Luciani - better know as Pope John Paul 1 - who died under mysterious circumstances on 28 September 1978 after only 33 days in...
Published on 21 Mar 2002

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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars History of the investigation into the murder of John Paul I
Having followed Albino Luciani for thirty years of his ministry and for as many years after his death, I thought it might be helpful to set forth the historical record of investigations into the unwitnessed death of a man whose physical exam just three months earlier had declared him to be in exceptional health.

On the heels of the sudden and unwitnessed death...
Published 17 months ago by John Randolph Marshall


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38 of 44 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Why did this wonderful man have to die?, 21 Mar 2002
By A Customer
I am not a Christian. In fact, despite my deep interest in the history of religion, I am a staunch agnostic. Yet if there was ever a human being who, had he been granted more time, could have changed the world for the better, it was Papa Albino Luciani - better know as Pope John Paul 1 - who died under mysterious circumstances on 28 September 1978 after only 33 days in office.
Know by many as 'The Smiling Pope', it was widely believed that the Papacy of this humble, 65-year-old Italian would not be particularly noteworthy. How wrong could they have been! On the eve of his untimely death, Papa Luciani was not only preparing to slacken the Church's ruling on birth control, he was also about to embark on an investigation into corruption within the Vatican itself - corruption involving an illegal masonic lodge which had penetrated the Vatican walls in its search for power and wealth.
A Thief in the Night by John Cornwell is a truly excellent work of investigative journalism which examines the life of this wonderful man and guides us - quite objectively - through the events that led to his unnecessarily early death.
Unlike David Yallop in his book In God's Name, Cornwell does not force his opinions on the reader, but provides us, instead, with the known facts, and allows us to come to our own conclusions.
Although the truth will probably never be known, it is abundantly clear that certain high-ranking individuals from both inside and outside the Vatican had much to fear if John Paul I had remained alive.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Private Investigations, 19 May 2014
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I am great fan of John Cornwell, having already read "Hitler's Pope" (see the review). This was the previous book and it was the Vatican's attempt to undermine David Yallop's In God's Name: An Investigation into the Murder of Pope John Paul I bestseller which claimed that JPI was murdered. Cornwell even interviews Yallop in the book. It makes little difference. We know that there was cover-up.

I stopped reading this book in the middle and read The Secret History of the Jesuits. Then everything made sense. The Jesuits are a bunch of liars. Once you know that then the pieces all fit together. Even in John Thavis's The Vatican Diaries: A Behind-the-Scenes Look at the Power, Personalities and Politics at the Heart of the Catholic Church we see how the Jesuits rewrite history (see chapter two).

Halfway through the book Cornwell interviews some Jesuits who apparently wrote a piece in their newspaper that JPI had had "An Imitation of Christ" in his hands when he died. They were clearly lying.

The Jesuits are liars. The current Pope is a Jesuit. Enough said.

A.M.
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An interesting window on the Vatican 20 years ago, 3 Jan 2010
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A well-researched account of John Paul I reign and death. Perhaps of more interest is the account of the workings of the Vatican 20 years ago. Having been written before Hitler's Pope it also gives an interesting background to Cornwell's views on Pius XII. Well worth a read.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars History of the investigation into the murder of John Paul I, 12 Mar 2013
Having followed Albino Luciani for thirty years of his ministry and for as many years after his death, I thought it might be helpful to set forth the historical record of investigations into the unwitnessed death of a man whose physical exam just three months earlier had declared him to be in exceptional health.

On the heels of the sudden and unwitnessed death of the youngest pope to die in four hundred years, Zottola & Pena published `They Have Murdered the Pope: Operation Pigeon' driven by what was at the time the most obvious motive for murder: John Paul's threat of economic movement toward Marxism in the west and liberal reformation within the Church. The book--a novel--came remarkably close to the truth in its fictional creation of `Operation Pigeon'--a blend of curia cardinals and capitalistic powers and the disappearance of Vatican Bank money in Central America.

In 1984, Yallop made the case for murder. In `In God's Name' he offers the hypothesis: three archbishops--Marcinkus, Cody and Villot--conspired in the Vatican bank scandal to the benefit of three Mafia types--Calvi, Sindona and Gelli. John Paul was murdered because an audit he ordered of the Vatican bank would have exposed transactions which exploded in the press four years later as the `Great Vatican Bank Scandal'--the Vatican transferred hundreds of millions of dollars to Nicaragua (believed to have gone to the Contras to overthrow the communist Sandinistas government). Much to his credit, Yallop revived the liberal identity of the 33-day Pope particularly as it concerned itself with contraception; something the Vatican had gone out of its way to annihilate.

In 1985, the Vatican fabricated a `bio-brief' and distributed it through anonymous clergy in Catholic countries to dispel Yallop's claim of murder. To support death due to natural causes, the `fraud' claimed he had lived his life in such poor health as if a respirator was required to keep him alive from day to day. Conversely, he was an accomplished mountaineer requiring a powerful respiratory system; the six mounds in his coat-of-arms represent the six peaks for which holds the speed record. Nevertheless, this `fraud' has served as the framework for a flood of `biographies' written by various clergy since.

In 1988, Avro Manhattan wrote `The Dollar and the Vatican' in which he presents the hypothesis: The conspiracy that planned the Great Vatican Bank Scandal was the same conspiracy that plotted the Murder of John Paul I. Unfortunately, Manhattan died before tribunal and other investigations into the surreptitious goings-on in the Vatican 1978-1981 proved his case. Manhattan wrote the all-time Vatican-bestseller The Vatican and World Politics.

In 1989, John Paul II commissioned John Cornwell to write 'A Thief in the Night' to dispel rumors caused by Yallop and Manhattan. In exchange for access to Vatican witnesses, Cornwell would conclude John Paul died of pulmonary embolism; heart attack having been roundly ruled out by the medical community. Whereas Cornwell fails to prove embolism, he does poke a hole in Yallop's motive. He cites the testimony of courts that tried the Great Vatican Bank Scandal that proved the first transaction in the bank scandal took place under the reign of John Paul II--a month after the death of the 33-day Pope. The audit could not have uncovered transactions which had not yet occurred.

In 2013, Lucien Gregoire The Vatican Murders: The Life and Death of John Paul I --employing a barrage of testimony of the courts together with medical and criminology advancements not available to the others when they wrote their books--proves Avro Manhattan's thesis: The conspiracy that planned the Great Vatican Bank Scandal was the same conspiracy that plotted the Murder of Pope John Paul I.

This makes sense. Early in his papacy John Paul I announced his support for the revolution of the poor in Central America against the ruthless coalition of the United States and ruling Juntas going so far as to announce that he himself would lead the upcoming Puebla Conference in Mexico. Too, it was clear he was on rapid path to change doctrine in those cases it imposes unfair restrictions of the lives of innocent people: women, homosexuals, illegitimate children, etc. As he so profoundly put it in his acceptance speech: "...for God-given human life is infinitely more precious than is man-made doctrine."

John Paul II was just the opposite. Shortly after his election, the Polish Pope raised the first $383 million from unsuspecting investors in the Great Vatican Bank Scandal and transferred it to Nicaragua to finance the rising of the Contras to crush the revolution of the poor in Central America. What's more, he toured Central America telling the people to stop supporting the revolutionaries and defrocked priests who had led the revolution. Too, for the 27 years of his papacy he kept women, homosexuals and other oppressed peoples in their place.

By a remarkable turn of events, all this has come back to the first thing that came to mind on the heels of his assassination: John Paul's threat of economic movement toward Marxism in the west and liberal reformation within the Church.

Except for the Vatican fraud, these are all good books. Gregoire--a one-time acquaintance of the 33-day Pope--includes a complete biography of this pope in his book consistent with the bio-briefs in `In God's Name' and `A Thief in the Night.' The reason it is a much bigger book--two books in one book. Out-of-print Zottola-Pena novel is in Spanish only.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars, 26 Jun 2014
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Book is in very poor condition.
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2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Fair Inquiry, 11 Mar 2012
I think this is a worthy addition to the argument over the scandals in the Vatican and the death of Pope John Paul I.

Moreover, it reads like a brilliant detective story, full of intrigue and suspicion.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant account of the death of a Pope, 7 April 2014
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This review is from: A Thief in the Night: Death of Pope John Paul I (Hardcover)
Clear concise,I felt I was walking the corridors of the Vatican.No conspiracy just the normal cock up theory of history.
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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Finally a neutral View on this Topic, 20 Sep 2012
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The author really leaves it up to you to judge. He doesn't guide you towards his own opinion. It's very well written and renders the author's experience with everybody he has spoken to. It's not a story he made of his interviews but the interviews themselves. I have never read a more neutral book on this topic. Without saying so, it becomes so obvious that a lot of bickering and human factors are to be found in the Vatican. These are humans, no saints and this book makes you see it.
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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A real teat, 6 Oct 2013
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The bbok was a real insght into the Vatican and I enjoyed reading every page. It put an end to my concerns about the way the pope died. It also introduced me to other writing of John Cornwell.
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0 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars AN EXCELLENT BOOK, 27 Nov 2013
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I read this book may years ago on the recommendation of my son. I have also recommended and loaned it to friends. I bought an additional copy as it is no longer in publication. Good condition, prompt delivery.
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A Thief in the Night: Death of Pope John Paul I
A Thief in the Night: Death of Pope John Paul I by John Cornwell (Hardcover - 25 May 1989)
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