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Padre Pio: The True Story (Revised, Expanded)
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Padre Pio: The True Story (Revised, Expanded)

4.37  ·  Rating details ·  250 ratings  ·  31 reviews
Intriguing, mysterious, and faithful are just a few words that describe this beloved Italian priest who bore the wounds of Christ. Up to the time of his death in 1968, Padre Pio had been receiving five thousand letters a month and thousands of visitors each year. Some were asking for physical ills to be cured, some were looking for spiritual healing, and some were just cur ...more
Paperback, 444 pages
Published April 1st 1991 by Our Sunday Visitor (first published January 1st 1982)
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Apr 20, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: anyone interested in learning about a modern day saint
Recommended to Debbie by: my father-in-law
When I was a naval officer stationed in Naples, Italy in the late 1980's, my fiance and I once took a road trip eastward, across the boot of Italy, just to see what was on the other side. Our destination was the odd-shaped "spur" of the boot that sticks out into the Adriatic Sea and an ancient town called Manfredonia.

On our way there,we saw a huge billboard with a picture of a gray-haired priest, with his hands wrapped in bandages. The billboard said something in Italian roughly translated, "Se
Monica Aho
May 07, 2008 rated it really liked it
Fascinating biography of the noted mystic and stigmatist. Makes me realize how utterly inadequate I am as a Christian, but how merciful God is to frail people. Interesting that this biography was written by a Lutheran minister, which actually, to me, gives greater creedance to some pretty astounding claims of the "supernatural". ...more
Aug 12, 2011 rated it liked it
Although the subject was fascinating and inspirational, it was a dense read because the narrative seemed to jump around. It was well-researched, however.
Jun 09, 2011 rated it liked it
I read this book because I had some interest in the life of Padre Pio.
I did enjoy reading about his life, but at times found myself skimming through some of the sections; I found it at times to be repetitive.
I would say if you have any interest in the man, then this is a book for you.
May 11, 2008 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: anyone interested in this saint
An excellent biography of a fascinating modern day saint. A very dear friend raised my level of awareness regarding this incredible man with her own personal testimony prompting me to buy this book.

Ruffin manages to combine a balanced mix of history, biography and spiritual development to present a very clear image of Padre Pio--a very down-to-earth yet quite extraordinary human being.

Ruffin is careful to cite sources and back them up wherever possible, but he includes the miraculous even when
Nov 14, 2008 rated it it was amazing
A good book about an amazing man. Padre Pio was a Capuchin monk that died in the 60's. He bore the stigmata, the wounds of Christ, and was a mystic. He could tell if a person was giving a complete confession and would send people away if they neglected to tell all of their sins. He was a very holy man and many miracles are attributed to his intercession. He became a saint in 2002, but many considered him to be a saint in his lifetime. ...more
Aug 11, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Great biography of St. Padre Pio. Does a good job of telling all of the main stories associated with the saint while also distinguishing very clearly which ones had pretty indisputable evidence and which did not. Also does a good job of describing how the saint's life changed over the course of the years as he grew in popularity but struggled with times when the church tried to suppress the fervor about him. ...more
Aug 25, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Decided to read this biography after I saw the author, a lutheran pastor, being interviewed on the Catholic tv network EWTN.
It reads to me like an objective and honest biography. The author has done much research to try and get all the facts about Padre Pio. The photos add real authenticity to his account
Apr 29, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: faith
This book was quite challenging for me to get into at the start. It is very dense. Once capitvated however, it quickly became one I looked forward to reading further. This story is remarkable and interesting particularly because it is written by a non-Catholic. The pictures in the center of the book lend nicely to the remarkable events that happened to this amazing figure. Great read.
I repeat, still waiting for the right biography. This one is good, not great, and an essential read for approaching Pio.
Kevin Wellen
Jun 02, 2008 rated it really liked it
The life of this reclusive but affiable monk has changed the world in my different ways. The initial family tree was a bit long, but the biography of his mission, life and works is remarkable!
John Toncinich
Oct 15, 2008 rated it really liked it
It is a good book on a simple person, who then became a monk was given a gift and used his gift for others, placing others before himself
Glen Dallaire
Mar 26, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Excellent biography on St Pio!
Luanne Lusic
Nov 03, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Out of the three books that I have read about Padre Pio, this is the best one. It goes into much more detail and includes some of his religious philosophy.
Jun 26, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: faith
really glad i read this...interesting and enlightening
Sam Fink
Jun 03, 2012 rated it liked it
A good book but not as spirtiually moving as I had hoped.
George McCombe
Aug 24, 2018 rated it really liked it
It has been said that the Saints are ordinary men and women who, through their devotion to God, managed to do extraordinary things. That being noted, it does still seem difficult to find any aspect of the life of St. Padre Pio which one can describe as being ordinary in the sense that most of us are accustomed to. We may encounter people we consider to be holy or pious, but few are granted the graces that overflowed from this simple friar. Reading this well-researched biography by C. Bernard Ruf ...more
Oct 31, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This book took me a long time to read (there were other books I was reading around this one). But when I wanted a comfort book before sleep, I always chose this one. I love Padre Pio. He was an amazing human in many ways through all his suffering, and Ruffin leaves no stone unturned. Many times when Ruffin couldn't confirm information, he stated that fact. Straightforward truth--I like that. This is an excellent, well-researched biography of a humble man just trying to save souls, but there is s ...more
Donna Carver
Jun 08, 2020 rated it really liked it
This is not a quick read, but it is a fascinating read. I've always heard of Padre Pio but never knew much except that he had the stigmata and was said to bi-locate. This book is a detailed look at his life and times. Padre Pio was holy, devoted, loved a good joke, but also could be quite stern and even angry. He did not have an easy life as a priest, but his faith in God never faltered. Ruffin provides so much information, stories, interviews, and anecdotes but always verifies or says "so peopl ...more
Apr 08, 2019 rated it liked it
An incredibly dense and thoroughly researched bio of this beloved saint. There was too much detail in the book, however, and it seemed to get bogged down and repetitive. In the end it became almost a litany of all the miracles (likely and unlikely) that may have occurred around Padre Pio. This had the effect of making me feel skeptical, as it seemed clear that a number of these were fabricated or embellished by overzealous Italians.

This was my first real exposure to Padre Pio's life and I found
Stan Finger
Nov 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I loved this book because it delved deeper than many writings about Pio that I have read. We learn more about the man himself, his all-too-human struggles and how difficult his life actually was. Perhaps it took a non-Catholic to write it to provide a perspective that - even as it raises questions about some of the miracles and wonders attributed to Pio - in its own way only reinforces how remarkable Pio of Pietrelcina really was.

If you are curious about this prayerful man of God, add this offer
Apr 09, 2020 rated it really liked it
Not the easiest book to read. The author is (admittedly) not an unbiased biographer and he clearly pulled in exhaustive interviews and evidence about the Saint’s life to try and convince others. And frankly some of that was exhausting to read. But Padre Pio’s life is pretty fascinating and that made this well worth it. He is the first modern day saint I’ve learned about and I’ll echo the author’s conclusion that “for thousands of people he made God real.”
Brittany Brosdahl
Apr 24, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Captivating and insightful. I learned so much about this saint, and gained an appreciation from him about how our suffering can be a gift from God and a sign of love. I also learned more about his concern for the ministry of healing people both spiritually and physically. This book is packed full of information, but I was entranced nearly every moment of reading it. I naturally read it at a steady pace and easily absorbed it. Beautiful work!
Oct 25, 2020 rated it it was ok
He is officially known as Saint Pio of Pietrelcina but to many Catholics he is Padre Pio, an Italian priest who died in 1968. This book is a very detailed account of his life. Included are many accounts of miracles. This book was published in 1991 and padre Pio was declared a saint in 2002

I found this book difficult to read The author provided too much detail.
Jan 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This book is for someone who loves this Saint and wants to know every single detail of his life. It took me about nine nine months to read because I did so in bits and pieces. It was very heavy duty and not light reading. But I really loved all the information contained.
Jan 30, 2018 rated it really liked it
an informative, interesting history about the life of Padre Pio...his life was much more than just being a priest with stigmatas. His never ending faith and dedication to Jesus Christ and how he brought so many others to the Mother Church, or back to the Church, is very inspiring.
Angie Huffman
Jun 03, 2020 rated it really liked it
This book definitely gave me some different perspective on this saint (in a good way)!
Jess Baker
I love Padre Pio; he is my confirmation Saint. I didn't love this biography and hope to find a better one. It was very confusing, chronologically it often jumped back and forth. This made the many Italian city and people names hard to keep straight. ...more
Sarah Yasin
"If all the devils that are here were to take bodily form, they would blot out the light of the sun" - Ingoldsby, p. 115 ...more
Peter Cram
Sep 13, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Very inspiring and thought provoking.
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