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Author: Andrew M. Greeley


After studies at Archbishop Quigley Preparatory Seminary in Chicago, he received an AB from St. Mary of the Lake Seminary in Chicago in 1950, an STB in 1952, and an STL in 1954, when he was ordained. From 1954 to 1964 he served as an assistant pastor at Christ the King parish in Chicago, during which time he studied sociology at the University of Chicago. He received a Master of Arts in 1961 and then a PhD in 1962. His doctoral dissertation dealt with the influence of religion on the career plans of 1961 college graduates. Father Greeley had many other honors and awards bestowed upon him, such as honorary degrees from the University of Arizona and Bard College, New York state, and the National University of Ireland in Galway. In 1981, Father Greeley received the F. Sadlier Dinger Award, which is presented each year by educational publisher William H. Sadlier, Inc. in recognition of his outstanding contribution to the ministry of religious education in America. His fiction often deals with romances, including details of sexual encounters, typically written with underpinnings of a theology based on what theologian David Tracy calls the Catholic "analogical imagination", in which human love serves as a metaphor for the love of God for humankind. They reveal the author’s strong attachment to Irish culture: indeed, Greeley perhaps illustrates the Irish maxim that people from other countries of Irish descent are "More Irish than the Irish themselves". His major characters tend to be Irish-American Catholics from Chicago, and one example of this is John Blackwood "Blackie" Ryan, a mystery-solving clergyman (first priest, then bishop), who is apparently one of Greeley's alter egos and who is sometimes compared, not always favorably, with G. K. Chesterton's Father Brown. Greeley's first work of fiction to become a major commercial success was The Cardinal Sins (1981). He then put out the Passover Trilogy: Thy Brother's Wife (1982), Ascent into Hell (1983), and Lord of the Dance (1984). After that, he wrote on average a minimum of two novels per year. In 1987 alone he produced four novels and two works of non-fiction. He labels himself as "a smart-aleck, in other words, and a glib smart-aleck who can be dangerously humorous and even pugnacious when someone tries to put him down". His literary output has been such that it has been said that he "has never had an unpublished thought". At the height of the Catholic Church sexual abuse scandal, Greeley wrote The Priestly Sins (2004), a novel about a young priest from the Plains States who is exiled to an insane asylum and then to an academic life because he reports abuse that he has witnessed. His book, The Making of the Pope (2005) was intended as a follow-up to his The Making of the Popes 1978. This was a first hand account of the coalition building process by which Joseph Ratzinger ascended to the papacy as Benedict XVI. In 1996, his novel White Smoke described the scenario of the election of a new Pope. The author has also dabbled in science fiction, writing the novels God Game and The Final Planet. Politically, he has been an outspoken critic of the George W. Bush administration and the Iraq War, and supports immigration rights. His book entitled A Stupid, Unjust, and Criminal War: Iraq 2001–2007 (2007), succinctly evaluates and presents the logic of the rush to start the Iraqi War by the Bush administration and its consequences for the United States. Income generated from the sale of his books has been used to fund many charitable organizations. For example, In 1986, Father Greeley established a $1 million Catholic inner-city School Fund, providing scholarships and financial support to schools in the Chicago Archdiocese with a minority student body of more than 50 percent. In 1984, he contributed a $1 million financial endowment to establish a chair in Roman Catholic Studies at the University of Chicago. He also funds an annual lecture series, “The Church in Society,” at St. Mary of the Lake Seminary, Mundelein, Illinois, from which he received his S.T.L. in 1954. He has also donated several thousand dollars to the 2008 presidential campaign of Barack Obama.[1] Father Greeley is an ardent supporter of the Chicago Bears, Bulls and the Cubs. He suffered a fractured skull and left orbital bone near his eye in a fall on November 7, 2008 in Rosemont, Illinois, when his clothing got caught on the door of a taxi as it pulled away, and was hospitalized in critical condition.[2]( — Andrew Greeley's Federal Campaign Contribution Report)


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