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If Nuns Ruled the World: Ten Sisters on a Mission Paperback – September 2, 2014

4.4 out of 5 stars 147 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

Praise for If Nuns Ruled the World

“In an age of villainy, war and inequality, it makes sense that we need superheroes. And after trying Superman, Batman and Spider-Man, we may have found the best superheroes yet: Nuns.” —Nicholas Kristof, The New York Times

“Piazza writes vividly about hardworking women who devote their time and energy to making other people’s lives better. The result is a readable, informative look at how nuns, as flawed and human and real as they may be, also have a calling and a faith, and they use that to create change in the world. . . . If Nuns Ruled the World is a little bit of a crowd pleaser and a little bit subversive, and it opened up my eyes to the everyday heroism of some amazing women.” —Flavorwire

“Anybody looking to argue there is a place for Catholicism in the modern world should just stand on a street corner handing out Piazza’s book. By sharing the chills-inducing tales of the women toiling in ways most of us could never fathom, she has given oxygen to that flickering flame that is the Church's reputation in the U.S.” —The Daily Beast

“Fascinating profiles of 10 women determined to make a difference. Piazza successfully updates the image of black-garbed brides of Christ to strong, proactive and, yes, devout women intent on addressing social ills and tending to souls the Catholic church seems to shun, like gays and lesbians. Piazza delivers a controversial and important book.” —Daily News (New York)

“This affecting collection of journalistic pieces by Piazza . . . goes a very long way toward dispelling any notion of nuns as conformist knuckle-whackers. . . . Accessibly written, these ten portraits should speak to many students and church groups.” —Library Journal

About the Author

Jo Piazza is the author of the acclaimed Celebrity, Inc. How Famous People Make Money and a novel, Love Rehab. She is a regular contributor to the Wall Street Journal and her work has appeared in the New York Times, New York magazine, Glamour, Gotham, the Daily Beast, and Slate. She has also appeared as a commentator on CNN, Fox News, MSNBC, and NPR. Piazza holds an undergraduate degree in economics from the University of Pennsylvania, a master's in journalism from Columbia University, and a master's in religious studies from New York University. She lives in New York City with her giant dog.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Open Road Media (September 2, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1497601908
  • ISBN-13: 978-1497601901
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.7 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (147 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #115,645 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By just kath VINE VOICE on September 4, 2014
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
If Nuns Ruled The World by Jo Piazza

First of all I want to state that I am not a religious person. This is not a book just for nuns to read or a book for just Catholics to read, it is a wonderful work of non -fiction that gives credit to specific people for accomplishments that go above and beyond. The fact that they are nuns is really secondary to the fact that they are extraordinary people. Badass Women, IMO! To paraphrase the author, she thinks these women are rock stars and she wants to tell their story. Jo Piazza is an experienced journalist who writes for several well known publications. It shows.

She begins with what has been an investigation by the Vatican into what the nuns as individuals and groups have been up to. This investigation was begun in 2008 by the congregation for the institutes of consecrated life and the societies of apostolic life, Cardinal Franc Rode' initiated an inquiry into the quality of lif of american nun, on the theory that some of them had gone astray.

It is certainly no secret that the sisters live differently now then they did prior to 1962 when Pope John XXIII told them that they should go out in the world to serve. Gone were most of the habits and things began to change, and clearly for the better!

Some of what you will find here..

Sister Megan Rice 82 who has dedicated her life to disarmament of nuclear weapons. Everywhere.

Sister Simone Campbell of Nuns on a Bus fame with their Faithful Budget, an interfaith budget crafted by Christian, Jewish and Muslim religious organizations that calls for a reduction in military spending and more aid to the poor. This budget was delivered to Capitol Hill, and was ignored.
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Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Jo Piazza's sprightly and insightful "If Nuns Ruled the World: Ten Sisters on a Mission" is the most recent of several books that I have been honored to be asked to review by the publisher or author. As indicated by the subtitle as well as from the subject line of the e-mail I received offering the opportunity to review this book, it deals with "ten bold nuns (who) take on the world." Therefore, I was doubly delighted to have this book appear in my "queue" of Amazon Vine selections, and will go ahead now and submit the review I wrote when I received the electronic format of this work.

All of the sisters whose stories Piazza tells are still living, and remain active in their specific chosen ministries - even Sister Madonna Buder, who in her 80's has a unique ministry of running endurance races, including the Iron Man Triathlon! Each of these stories is a gem of a character study, as well as dealing with incredibly vital issues that face us in modern times, including human trafficking, torture, incarceration of women, gay and lesbian rights, corporate ethics, and - since these are all Catholic women - the terribly short-sighted attitude of the Vatican hierarchy with respect to the ordination of women to the priesthood.

Although I was partially familiar with several of the nuns included in Piazza's study, and very much aware of the contributions of Sister Jeannine Gramick because of my own long-term involvement with gay rights issues, I believe that this is an extraordinarily informative book, and extremely valuable because of both the depth and breadth of the stories told. Jo Piazza also includes a great deal of personal reflection in her narrative, which adds immediacy and color to what might otherwise have been a bit too objective.
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Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
"If Nuns Ruled the World: Ten Sisters on a Mission" by Jo Piazza is an inspiring fast read about the lives of 10 nuns. I'm not going to argue that all nuns are good or most are bad. I don't care. To me, nuns are Catholics who felt a calling and are now nuns. Some, like these nuns, are wonderful and there are others who are mean, nasty, horrid people. Just like people in every sector of life. The nuns in this book are great humans with a lot of love and empathy for their fellow humans on this earth. If anything about them being a nun is special is that they have been allowed to take the time needed to dedicate themselves to the good works they felt the need to do.

These women may be nuns and dedicated to G-d and their faith but, they are also dedicated to the betterment of people and the world. And they are progressive modern women who didn't settle for a quiet convent life and a teaching job at whatever Catholic School uses nuns from her order to fill the positions. These nuns don't simply say that they live by the teachings of the Bible, they are out there living it! They aren't afraid to step on any toes to make things happen and make sure they are accomplishing things for a better world, a better human race. And the nuns are not all "Spring Chickens." One of the nuns in the book is in her 80's and still very much involved in her mission, and being an athlete.

These strong modern women are not all nuns loved and endorsed by the Catholic Church. I suppose you could call them rebel nuns. Makes me want to see a new movie about nuns like one of these nuns called "Rebel WITH A Cause."
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