Miracle Cures: Saints, Pilgrimage, and the Healing Powers of Belief

  • by Robert A. Scott
  • Narrated by Bob Malos
  • 7 hrs and 24 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Iconic images of medieval pilgrims, such as Chaucer's making their laborious way to Canterbury, conjure a distant time when faith was the only refuge of the ill and infirm and thousands traveled great distances to pray for healing. Why, then, in an age of advanced biotechnology and medicine, do millions still go on pilgrimages? Why do journeys to important religious shrines - such as Lourdes, Compostela, Fátima, and Medjugorje - constitute a major industry?
In Miracle Cures, Robert A. Scott explores these provocative questions and finds that pilgrimage continues to offer answers for many. Its benefits can range from a demonstrable improvement in health to complete recovery. Using research in biomedical and behavioral science, Scott examines accounts of miracle cures at medieval, early modern, and contemporary shrines. He inquires into the power of relics, apparitions, and the transformative nature of sacred journeying and shines new light on the roles belief, hope, and emotion can play in healing.


What the Critics Say

"Represents a sophisticated integration of historical analysis of religious practice with the latest findings in medicine and the social sciences. Readers at all levels should enjoy this engaging but sophisticated book." (Choice)
"Engaging, compassionate book." (National Catholic Reporter)


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Thoughtful and Well Read

Would you consider the audio edition of Miracle Cures: Saints, Pilgrimage, and the Healing Powers of Belief to be better than the print version?

Scott presents a carefully researched and accessible understanding medieval and modern miracle cures by Christian saints. While he does not discount the possibility of supernatural intervention, he offers interesting theories about the pscyho/social and physiological factors that contribute to the healing of the faithful. He is respectful of and open to religious explanations of cures. The book is well organized and written so that the average reader can easily understand it. I appreciated how he covered not only the distant past, but also examined the impact of current technology on the veneration of saints.

Malos does an excellent job narrating this book. He clearly put effort into finding the correct pronunciation for foreign and scientific words. He conveyed an enthusiasm for the material that made it more interesting and engaging. What could have been a dry, scientific read was easy to listen to and held my attention. I believe his narration made a good book better. Well read!

Have you listened to any of Bob Malos’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

Malos is a superb narrator. He brings energy and interest to his material and adds to it in a way that does not distract from the work. He is easy to listen to and he holds my attention, even on this book which could have become a dry and boring scientific dissertation. His pace, clarity and pronunciation are first-rate.

Any additional comments?

I enjoyed hearing this book. This is the first time I have listened to an audio book for something that was not a story. Given that this book is researched based, I was pleasantly surprised by how the audio version held my attention and how well I was able to follow and take in the information. (Kudos to the author and narrator!) I am looking forward to expanding my use of audio books based on this experience.

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- Shelley

Book Details

  • Release Date: 07-27-2012
  • Publisher: University Press Audiobooks