Tracing the relationship between the Catholic Church and the Government, Establishment and people of Great Britain, The Keys and the Kingdom tells a hitherto little understood story of faith, drama, enmity, occasional friendship and great misunderstanding.
Catherine Pepinster charts the relationship between the British and the Papacy in the modern era, looking at how the relationship is coloured by its turbulent past. Despite this past, Pepinster uncovers the surprising influence of the Papacy in British politics, the collaboration between Pope and politicians on key issues, the 'stealth minority' of Catholics occupying major positions in public life, and the modern relationship between the Papacy and the Crown.
Pepinster shows the crucial role of British bishops in the appointment of Pope Francis and discusses the modern style of the Papacy and how this functions on a global scale. Featuring exclusive interviews with Cardinals Nichols and Murphy-O'Connor, Rowan Williams, Lord Patten and former British Ambassadors to both the Holy See and Italy this account of the relationship between the British and the Pope offers both fundamental evidence and penetrating insights into this most fascinating of political relationships.