This is a precious a compilation of brief portraits composed and presented by Pope Benedict XVI on key figures from Christian history. For several years, week after Week, Benedict devoted most of his public audiences to depicting some of the most important figures of the tradition theologians and philosophers but also spiritual guides, eremites and monks, abbots and abbesses, popes and bishops, founders and reformers, mystics and missionaries. The result is a set of seventy expert and reliable yet quite accessible introductions to the key framers of the pre-Reformation tradition, East and West, as useful for personal reading or study as for classroom or congregation. Pope Benedict brings decades of his own teaching and research to the task, and his pieces are not only illuminating historical sketches but also often surprisingly personal reflective meditations on the perennial challenges of theology, spirituality, devotion and corporate religious life in short, of thinking about and Wrestling daily with the mysteries that envelop all our lives and struggles.