The Faith of Ronald Reagan [NOOK Book]

Overview

Reagan’s greatest virtue wasn’t allegiance to country, butallegiance to God.

With warmth and insight, this best-selling book by Mary BethBrown delves into the spiritual journey of America’s 40th president and offers profoundstories of the provisions God made in Ronald Reagan’s life– from first makingit as an actor to winning the presidency, from surviving an assassinationattempt to eventually changing the face of politics and the world.

...

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The Faith of Ronald Reagan

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Overview

Reagan’s greatest virtue wasn’t allegiance to country, butallegiance to God.

With warmth and insight, this best-selling book by Mary BethBrown delves into the spiritual journey of America’s 40th president and offers profoundstories of the provisions God made in Ronald Reagan’s life– from first makingit as an actor to winning the presidency, from surviving an assassinationattempt to eventually changing the face of politics and the world.

Supported by Ronald Reagan’s own words and writings plus firsthandinterviews with his family, friends, and co-workers, Brown weaves a magnificentstory that inspires as it informs. Reagan’s strong devotion to God willencourage believers to enter public service, allowing their faith to motivatetheir actions, and will draw focus to Christ’s matchless sacrifice–forever nearand dear to President Reagan’s heart.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781595553850
  • Publisher: Nelson, Thomas, Inc.
  • Publication date: 1/18/2011
  • Sold by: THOMAS NELSON
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 256
  • Sales rank: 433,308
  • File size: 2 MB

Meet the Author

Mary Beth Brown is the author of the New York Times and USA Today best-selling book, Hand of Providence: The Strong and Quiet Faith of Ronald Reagan and Condi: The Life of a Steel Magnolia. Mary Beth writes a nationally syndicated column, which can be viewed at www.marybethbrown.net, and is a frequent guest on radio and TV.

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Read an Excerpt

The Faith of Ronald Reagan


By Mary Beth Brown

Thomas Nelson

Copyright © 2011 Mary Beth Brown
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-1-59555-353-9



CHAPTER 1

THE HAND OF PROVIDENCE

* * *

And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose. Romans 8:28


He leaned back in the luxurious chair reserved for the president of the United States on Air Force One. The two men, fortieth president of the United States, Ronald Wilson Reagan, and his grown son, Michael Edward Reagan, were deep in conversation as their plane sped onward toward Point Magu, California. One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, the president sat quietly counting his fingers.

"What are you doing, Dad?" asked Michael. "I'm counting the months until I will be out of office and I'll be able to attend church again," answered the president.

This conversation with his father was relayed to me by Michael Reagan in June of 2003 during a dinner at the Mimosa French Restaurant not far from the Reagan Ranch in Santa Barbara, California. Michael recounted the story with the passion a man has for an event that has been seared into his memory. I later learned that the trip he took alone with his father on Air Force One was taken shortly before Easter of 1988. Nine months later, in January 1989, Reagan left office after having served two terms as president.

Michael continued, "My father was really looking forward to the time when he was out of office and could attend church again. The reason he had stopped going to church while president was because he didn't want to put other people's lives in danger." Michael said that his dad still remembered all too vividly the people who had been severely injured and almost killed because of the assassination attempt against him. According to Michael, "Dad was willing to stop going to church, something that was very important to him and he liked to do, to prevent risking the lives of other innocent people, if another assassination attempt was made on him." But Michael said he encouraged his father to make an exception this Easter weekend and attend church. President Reagan paused a moment, then smiled, and said, "I think I will."

Early Easter Sunday morning, after he'd eaten a hearty breakfast, Reagan called John Barletta, head of the Secret Service at the Reagan Ranch, to have the helicopter readied for a short trip to church. The president attended a small country church in the Santa Ynez valley near his beloved Rancho del Cielo. This church had been a regular house of worship for him when he was at the ranch before his presidency. Sadly, he was still attacked by the liberal press for not attending church during his presidency, when it was actually something that was truly important to him—and his reason for not going was to protect lives.

This exchange between father and son showed the power and lasting impact of the near-tragic event that had occurred seven years earlier and how this attempted assassination had radically altered President Ronald Reagan's life. Reagan never wanted to put anyone in harm's way again.


Saved for a Higher Purpose

The president walked out of the side entrance of the Washington Hilton Hotel on a gloomy, gray afternoon in the spring, wearing his new blue pin-striped suit. Smiling and waving with his entourage of aides and Secret Service agents, he was met by a group of onlookers—mostly press photographers, TV cameramen, and reporters corralled behind a red velvet rope. It was March 30, 1981, the seventieth day of his presidency, and Reagan had just given a speech to the Construction Trades Council inside the hotel. The president's schedule was routinely printed in the Washington Star newspaper, as it was that day, giving the time and place of his speech. Anyone could find out where the president would be that day simply by looking it up in the daily newspaper, and someone did just that. That person was also waiting in the crowd outside the hotel. His name was John Hinckley Jr.

Because it was a warm and muggy day, President Reagan had not worn his bullet-proof vest. It was an oversight that nearly cost him his life. The president reasoned that his only exposure to the outside would be a short, thirty-foot walk from the hotel corridor to the car, and, besides, the vest restricted the movement of his arms, which he liked to use in gestures as he gave his speech. The president was to speak to a group of 3,500 people, his largest audience since the inauguration in January. He leisurely headed toward his limousine (code-named "Stagecoach" by the Secret Service) to return to the White House. Just before reaching the car, his assailant became visible—and the history of our nation and the world was nearly changed forever.

John Hinckley Jr. carried a .22-caliber Rohm snub-nosed revolver under his trench coat. It was loaded with six specially made bullets. He was a man on a mission—fully prepared to kill the president of the United States.

Only after the assassination attempt did we learn that Hinckley had written a letter to Jodie Foster, the young actress with whom he was obsessed. He told her in a letter, "I would abandon this idea of getting Reagan in a second, if I could only win your heart and live out the rest of my life with you.... I will admit to you that the reason I'm going ahead with this attempt now is because I just cannot wait any longer to impress you." Hinckley closed the letter saying, "I'm asking you to please look into your heart and at least give me the chance with this historical deed to gain your respect and love."

Hinckley had to have the right opportunity, and this gray, muggy day in March was it. A reporter tried to get the president's attention shouting, "Mr. President!" and "Mr. Reagan!" Hinckley's moment had arrived. He shoved several bystanders out of the way, assumed a crouching position, pulled out his weapon with a professional double-grip, and took aim.

Pop, pop, pop, pop. The bullets sounded like firecrackers, and the acrid smell of sulfur filled the air. Two seconds. That's all it took to change a life ... and the world.

Down went White House Press Secretary James Brady, who was in the line of fire and hit in the forehead with the first bullet. Brady was left lying facedown in a pool of blood. The second shot went astray, but the third hit Washington patrolman Thomas Delahanty in the back of his neck causing him to fall next to Brady on the ground. With tremendous courage, Secret Service agent Timothy McCarthy used his body as a human shield and took the fourth bullet intended for President Reagan. The bullet hit McCarthy in his lower right rib cage, throwing him backwards three feet onto the sidewalk beside Brady and Delahanty.

By now, Secret Service agents, police, and bystanders had tackled Hinckley, but he was still able to shoot one last bullet before he went down. This fateful bullet hit the limousine and ricocheted through a small gap between the body of the car and the door hinges. The bullet found its target, though, hitting the president's chest under his left arm and making a small hole in his skin as it headed for his heart. Jerry Parr, the head of the Secret Service detail, threw the president into the car, heroically landing on him to shield him from any more gunfire. As Parr shielded him, the president felt an excruciating pain in his chest. Reagan initially thought that one of his ribs had been broken when Parr landed on him.

Parr yelled, "Move out!" to Drew Unrue, the driver of the limousine, and told him to return to the White House. Unrue hit the accelerator and raced toward the president's home. Parr, an experienced Secret Service agent, ran his hands under the president's coat, feeling his sides and chest and running his fingers through the president's hair on the back of his head to check for blood. There was none.

But just when Parr was satisfied that the president had escaped unscathed, Reagan began coughing up pink, frothy blood—obviously, freshly oxygenated blood from the lungs. Agent Parr instantly knew that the president had been seriously injured and told the driver to head for George Washington University Hospital. By now, President Reagan was having great difficulty breathing. I remember learning in nursing school that one of the scariest feelings you can experience is when you're in respiratory distress and you can't get enough air to breathe, no matter how hard you try. You feel like you are suffocating. Time was running out. The limousine driver gunned the engine in a desperate attempt to reach the hospital before it was too late.

The presidential phone in the hospital emergency room rang. This presidential phone was to be used only in an extreme emergency. This was definitely it. The nurse who answered it was told to prepare for the presidential motorcade to arrive for immediate emergency care. The emergency room sprang to life in preparation for its incoming patient.

Mike Deaver, whose presidential control car (a mobile communications center) had pulled up to the hospital just after the president's car arrived, describes what he saw as President Reagan walked into the emergency room: "I saw Reagan get out of the car unaided, look to both sides, and give a tug to his pants. I think he actually buttoned his suit jacket. So far, so good. He walked toward the emergency room doors unassisted, with a pair of agents at his sides, but as soon as he was through the doors, out of public view, the strength in his legs abandoned him."

Reagan collapsed and was lifted onto a stretcher. The nurses quickly pulled off his jacket and cut off his shirt. Dr. Price, an emergency room physician, later recounted what happened in Paul Thomsen's Operation Rawhide, "I listened, but there was no sound in his left lung, and his blood pressure was double zero. There was no pulse." The president was hovering near death.

Blood and other fluids were being forced into his system through three IV lines while a drainage tube was pouring blood out of his side. Reagan's systolic blood pressure rose to eighty. Dr. Price rolled the president over and noticed a small slit, like a button-hole, under Reagan's left armpit. The doctor suspected that this was the bullet hole and had the area x-rayed.

President Reagan knew that doctors and nurses were working on him feverishly, fighting to save his life, but he was still having trouble breathing. His skin had turned so pale that Nancy Reagan remembers, "He was the color of paper—just as white as a sheet, with dried blood around his mouth."

Reagan later recalled looking up from the gurney, trying to focus his eyes on the square ceiling tiles, and praying. While he was lying on the gurney, half-conscious, he realized that someone was holding his hand. "It was a soft, feminine hand," he writes in his autobiography, An American Life. "I felt it come up and touch mine and then hold on tight to it. It gave me a wonderful feeling. Even now I find it difficult to explain how reassuring, how wonderful, it felt."

He goes on to say, "It must have been the hand of a nurse kneeling very close to the gurney, but I couldn't see her. I started asking, 'Who's holding my hand? ... Who's holding my hand?'" When he didn't hear any response, Reagan said, "Does Nancy know about us?"

He continues, "Although I tried afterward to learn who the nurse was, I was never able to find her. I had wanted to tell her how much the touch of her hand had meant to me, but I never was able to do that."


Angels Watching over Him

Reagan had experienced a similar event when he was critically ill with viral pneumonia many decades before. He had written about this encounter in his earlier autobiography, Where's the Rest of Me? At the time, he was working on a movie with Shirley Temple that he admits he was "less than happy about doing," when he became deathly ill. He writes, "But while the studio was sleuthing around the hospital to see if I was really there, my next of kin were being notified that the hospital might be my last address."

"Days and nights went by in a hazy montage in which I alternately shivered with chills or burned with fever," says Reagan. He was lying in bed wrapped up in blankets waiting for the fever to end, but instead his temperature just kept getting higher. He describes his touch-and-go situation in this way, "Finally I decided I'd be more comfortable not breathing. I don't know what time of night it was when I told the nurse I was too tired to breathe. 'Now let it out,' she'd say. 'Come on now, breathe in once more.'

"This went on, over and over, with her arguing me into another breath when all I wanted was to rest and stop making the effort. Wherever she is and whether she remembers our midnight contest or not, I don't suppose I'll ever know, but the memory is vivid to me. She was so nice and persistent that I let her have her way, and kept breathing out of courtesy. The sweat came and washed me back down the divide I'd been climbing."

Were these mysterious nurses whom Reagan never could find actually angels sent by God to help him survive in his hours of desperate need? Were they there to save him so he could carry out God's plan for his life?

In Angels Don't Die, President Reagan's daughter, Patti, recounts seeing her father in the hospital the morning after the assassination attempt in 1981. "He actually didn't look frail; he looked almost ethereal. There was a light in his eyes that made me think, then and still, that he saw something—visited with God, listened to the counsel of an angel—something. My mother has since told me that he woke up at one point after the doctors had operated on him, unable to talk because there was a tube down his throat. He saw figures in white standing around him and scrawled on a piece of paper, 'I'm alive, aren't I?'

"When my mother first told it to me, we discussed how logical it is to assume that the figures in white, standing around my father, were the doctors and nurses who were tending to him. But maybe not, we said; maybe he did see angels. We left it with a question mark. Then I repeated it to a friend—a nurse—who pointed out to me that no one in a recovery room or in intensive care is in white; they're all in green scrubs. I phoned my mother and told her, and her reaction was, 'I didn't even think of that, there was so much that day—but you're right.'"

Michael Reagan, speaking to students at a Young America's Foundation Summer Conference in July 2003 about the same incident, told the group, "Patti believes they were angels, and so do I."

Stories of the presence and guidance of angels can be powerful. In his classic book, Angels: God's Secret Agents, Billy Graham writes many wonderful, comforting things about angels and, after a lifetime of extensive research on the topic, comes to these conclusions: "Both angels and the Holy Spirit are at work in our world to accomplish God's perfect will. God uses angels to work out the destinies of men and nations. He has altered the courses of the busy political and social arena of our society and directed the destinies of men by angelic visitations many times over."

Angels are mentioned in the Bible over three hundred times. According to Scripture, they have helped the children of God in difficult circumstances and are prepared for any emergency. And, when necessary, they can become visible. Graham says,"God uses both men and angels to declare His message to those who have been saved by grace," and has ordered angels to minister to men. As proof, he quotes from the Bible, where in Hebrews 1:14 the writer says: "Are they [angels] not all ministering spirits, sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation?"

Angels have faithfully carried the message of God's will in times of oppression, discouragement, and failing endurance. Graham says God's restoring servants, His "heavenly messengers," have encouraged, sustained, and lifted the spirits of many discouraged saints and have changed many hopeless circumstances. Angels have ministered the message, "All is well," to fully satisfy the physical, material, emotional, and spiritual needs of His people.

Billy Graham says the most important characteristic of angels is that they work on our behalf. "They are motivated by an inexhaustible love for God, and are jealous to see that the will of God in Jesus Christ is fulfilled in us."

God assigns angelic powers to watch over us "for we have been made a spectacle to the world, both to angels and to men" (1 Corinthians 4:9). Graham notes, "They superintend the events of our lives and protect the interest of the Lord God, always working to promote His plans and to bring about His highest will for us."


(Continues...)

Excerpted from The Faith of Ronald Reagan by Mary Beth Brown. Copyright © 2011 Mary Beth Brown. Excerpted by permission of Thomas Nelson.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Table of Contents

Foreword ix

Introduction xi

1 The Hand of Providence 1

2 Nelle Reagan: Building Young Reagan's Rock of Faith 19

3 The High School Years 39

4 The Quiet Faith of Ronald Reagan 51

5 The American Dream 63

6 A One-Man Battalion Named Ronald Reagan 85

7 A Family in Crisis 99

8 Nancy Gets Her Man 111

9 California's Christian Governor 135

10 The Open Cathedral 147

11 The Road to the White House 157

12 Fighting the Good Fight 169

13 A Good and Faithful Servant 191

Eulogies 205

Acknowledgments 223

Bibliography 225

Index 231

About the Author 237

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 22 )
Rating Distribution

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 22 Customer Reviews
  • Posted January 6, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    A True Example of Faith

    Former President Ronald Reagan was a man of faith, not just when he was in public, but all the time. Throughout the book, Ms. Brown gives examples of how Mr. Reagan's faith got him through tests such as running for Governor of CA and for President of the United States, as well as the assassination attempt made on him. Ms. Brown sets the tone for each chapter by using Scripture verses to introduce them. Throughout the book, the powerful influence of his mother, Nelle Reagan, is shown. She was a woman who loved her family and loved her God, and passed that to her children. It is easy to see how it was passed to Mr. Reagan and why he had a strong faith. This book is not preachy, but gets its points across very well.

    I enjoyed reading this book because it is well written, but also because Michael Reagan wrote the Forward, and Ronald Reagan is one of my favorite Presidents. It is a book I will share with others and give as gifts. It would make a great book for an individual reader, but reading groups could have a lot of fun with it as well. I received this book from the Book Sneeze program and thank them for the opportunity of reading it.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted August 29, 2014

    Excellent Book about a Great American

    In the past 67 years, I have not been a great reader other than school assignments. However, after a friend reccommended this book, I ordered it and could not put it down. I never realized what a great Christian man Ronald Reagan was until I read Mary Beth Browns' story of his life.
    I was amazed at his extraordinary Faith and the fact that he gaave God the credit for all of his accomplishments. But the thing that impressed me most about President Reagan was the Christian values that he instilled in his children (all but one). What a testimony to any Parent and especially one who has the "heady" job of being the President of the United States. I think this book shoud be required reading for all of our children . It clearly shows us what the President of this great land is supposed to be like and how he is supposed to act. Republican or Democrat...it doesn't matter,,,Christian Character and actions don't belong to political parties.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 8, 2013

    Love Mr Ronald Reagan

    Man of God The Book Was Great

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 23, 2012

    Deuces house

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted June 14, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Probably the best book I have read in a long time. This made me

    Probably the best book I have read in a long time. This made me respect a great president and human being even more than I have in the past. Enjoyed the little jokes throughout the book (the one to his grandson about his autograph made it all worthwhile!). Would definitely recommend for anyone who misses when being a President didn't conflict with being seen as a normal person, and not a celebrity.

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  • Posted March 24, 2012

    First, it should be noted that I love Ronald Reagan. As such, I

    First, it should be noted that I love Ronald Reagan. As such, I love reading anything and everything about our 40th president. Secondly, I am a Christian who devours almost any non-fiction book with a Christian bent. Therefore, when I came across a book combining the two, I had no doubt this book would make it onto my "top 10 books of all time" list.

    It did not. Not even close.

    I was surprised to discover that the writing of "New York Times Best-Selling Author" Mary Beth Brown was very redundant and awkward. I noticed the clumsy prose almost immediately--in the introduction, I believe. In fact, her writing kept distracting me from the content, which- for the most part- was decent. Nonetheless, I kept reading because I "kept the faith" that the storytelling might improve as the book progressed. Of course, it didn't. (I realize that's delusional thinking, but I was so desperate for this book to be great that I overlooked its immediate and obvious flaws....which is the same thing that many women do when they are desperate to be in a relationship, but I digress...)

    Somewhat ironically- of all the Reagan biographies I've read- this book moved me the least. It is almost as if- by centering the book on the president's Christian faith- it feels too forced...or as though Brown is pushing an agenda. (Again, I remind you that I am a Christian and I love Christian books.) Perhaps Reagan's other biographers let his words and actions speak for themselves, and the reader is able to deduce- accurately and on his/her own terms- that Reagan's faith was the key component to his inspirational life. Or perhaps Brown's glowing voice is just not detached enough to make it sound genuinely credible. (It sounds more like Reagan's mother Nelle wrote it than an objective biographer.)

    Thus, if you are looking for a serious and well-written biography, look elsewhere. I believe his life is testament enough to his undying faith in Jesus Christ...and that you will find in almost any biography of the late great Ronald Wilson Reagan.

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  • Posted July 4, 2011

    A Review of The Faith of RONALD REAGAN by Mary Beth Brown

    I am truly blessed to have read this book. This book gave me great insight into the faith of one of America's greatest presidents. By and Large, I was encouraged and my faith rejuvenated. The book goes through different points in the President's life and recalls parts that impacted his life, through his faith. It is based on personal accounts either through Regan's writings or close friends' recollections.
    I find this book highly interesting Chapter to Chapter. Not only did the writer have deep admiration and respect for the President, she also revealed the true secrets behind his successes. How his faith sustained him in the face of assassination is worthy of emulation. I recommend this book to every Christian political leader.
    Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255 : "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."

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  • Posted April 6, 2011

    Interesting Read

    I recently received a copy of "The Faith of Ronald Reagan". I was very excited to read this book, because Reagan is someone who I find very fascinating. The book goes through different points in the President's life and recalls parts that impacted his life, through his faith. It is based on personal accounts either through Regan's writings or close friends' recollections.



    While I did find the book very interesting, the writing style was not my favorite. I could tell the writer had a deep affection for the President, but it came across as more of an admiration as a child admires their elders. I learned a lot of interesting facts about the president, and was very encouraged by the recounts of the assassination attempt, and how Reagan's faith sustained him.

    I would recommend this book, because it is full of interesting facts, but the reader needs to be aware of the writing style. It is more of a conversational style than informative.

    Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255 : "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted March 22, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    The Faith of Ronald Reagan by Mary Beth Brown

    Ronald Reagan is arguably the most important president of the United States in contemporary American history. Democrats seek to roll back his influence on both the economic and social fronts. While Republicans seek to position themselves as heirs of Reagan.

    In this spiritual biography, Mary Beth Brown seeks to hold up the "Christian conservative" credentials of Ronald Reagan, as well as defining Reagan's policy accomplishments from the social conservative perspective.

    Beginning with the assassination attempt on his life, Brown consistently points out the belief in faith in God and God's providence. She details the influence of the faith of Reagan's mother on the President's faith, his successful acting career, work with the Screen Actor's Guild, marriages to Jane Wyman and Nancy Reagan and his career as California Governor followed by his presidency.

    The books is a simple read, with Reagan quotes and scripture verses at the beginning of each chapter. This format makes it a good tool for personal devotional reading or discussion starter in an adult Sunday School class.

    Brown writes well, but she goes over the top at times when she describes supernatural signs of Reagan's providential presidency. All-in-all this is a good read and will be popular among Christian conservatives. The book might also be a great gift for your neoconservative friends.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted February 6, 2011

    Great Read!

    Mary Beth Brown wrote this book using interviews and Ronald Reagan's own words. She shows how Reagan's devotion to God helped him as a child, adult and a politician. Ronald Reagan always had a strong belief in God, which is shown in the eulogies by his children and others at the end of the book.

    My Thoughts- I thought this book was very good. I have always wanted to learn more about Ronald Reagan's faith and this was certainly the book to do it. One of the most important things I learned from this book was the support network Ronald Reagan had. He always had people to turn to that supported him and helped him grow in his faith in God. He passed that knowledge and devotion to God onto his children. It was fun reading the parts that showed how much Nancy Reagan was valued by him and his first children, Maureen and Michael.

    Ronald Reagan's relationship with his mother showed me how I need to be with my children to raise them to follow God.

    I would recommend this book.

    Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted February 4, 2011

    Great book about a great man!!

    I enjoy any book that has to do with the 40th president of the United States Ronald Reagan. I enjoy so much his autobiography. I was very young when Reagan was in office, but I remember him many time address the county via the TV. With just the resent anniversary of the Challenge Space Shuttle, I remember that day and Reagan address the American people that night after it happened. I was 8 years old but I remember like it happened yesterday.
    That is the kind of man Ronald Reagan was, he loved this country and he love God. I truly believe with all my heart that God groomed Reagan to be the president at the time that he was. It was because of him that he help get this country back on it's feet after suffering a recession in the late 70's. It was him that God work through to being down the wall in Germany and to end the cold war.
    The Faith of Ronald Reagan by Mary Beth Brown is a must read. It is not a book that will go deep into the presidents live but it will show you his love for this county and his love for our Heavenly Father.

    Thank you Thomas Nelson for my advanced copy of this great book.

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  • Posted January 31, 2011

    Fans of Ronnie -- A must read!

    "Whatever happens now, I owe my life to God and will try to serve him in any way that I can." - Ronald Reagan, 1981. This quote sums up the existence of Ronald Reagan's life. In her book, The Faith of Ronald Reagan, by Mary Beth Brown, she delivers a biography filled with the circumstances that shaped Ronald Reagan into the person he was. From his mother Nelle's gentle proding and unshakeable faith, to his time in Hollywood as SAG president, to his stint as Governor of California, and later, as a two-term president who helped the US win the Cold War, Ronald Reagan relied on his faith in God to carry him through every circumstance. His kids attest to his integrity in all things and the relationship he had with his wife Nancy was one to be modeled.
    Although he believed in America as one of the greatest country, he believed more that God could change and shape every human being and that the only way he could do his work was with the Lord's help. As I reviewed this book for Thomas Nelson publishers, I thought of what a lasting impact Ronald Reagan has had on our nation. When I was in college I had the opportunity to tour the Reagan Ranch in Santa Barbara, CA and see the home that was called the "Western Whitehouse". I saw the bibles lying on the bedstand, and the table where Reagan signed into effect the largest tax cut bill in American history. I saw a small glimpse into the everyday life of one of our greatest presidents, and I understood what it means to do big things for God.
    If you like Ronald Reagan or are remotely interested in his life and faith, then you will want to read this book. It's filled with personal anecdotes, quotes and scripture and it is sure to be an encouraging read.

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  • Posted January 21, 2011

    An Extraordinary Look into the Faith of our 40th President

    I grew up hearing my dad talk about what a great President he was, and that I should be paying attention to everything he was about. Little did I know that as I got older and started voting myself, the ideals that Reagan stood for became those that I used when making my decisions.

    This book goes much further than talking about Presidential decisions and such - it discusses in such detail about Ronald Reagans spiritual journey. The depth of the stories in the book and realization that God really did make such a difference in his life AND his decisions as President.

    The Faith of Ronald Reagan also includes wonderful writings from him that help you understand just how much his devotion to God helped him make those very important decisions. I really enjoyed the interviews with his family and friends as well. These helped me realize that he really was a very special person.

    On February 6th of this year, Ronald Reagan would have been 100 years old - that is so hard to believe. The author, Mary Beth Brown, does an extraordinary job of honoring him. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and if you are thinking of a gift for Fathers Day, this would be a fantastic choice!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 19, 2011

    GREAT READ--Man with great faith!!!

    The biography The Faith of Ronald Reagan by Mary Beth Brown gives us an insight to the religious beliefs and thought of Reagan throughout his entire life. With reading this book you will find that Reagan was instilled with strong beliefs in God at a young age through his mother. This book portrays that in every position that God put him in throughout his life he always aspired to glorify God.
    I found this book to be a very easy read. It enlightened me by showing me how to glorify God through every situation. This book doesn't go in depth about his presidency but it does go deeper in to his faith than any other biography that I have read. I enjoyed reading it and getting to see how Reagan's faith led him to the many different career aspects of throughout his life. I recommend this book for any adult who enjoys biographies and to anyone who wants to read about a man who uses his Christian values in every aspect of his life.


    Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

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  • Posted January 14, 2011

    Lots of Research--And That's All

    Ronald Reagan's name had hardly pierced my six-year-old consciousness until the afternoon of March 30, 1981, when John Hinckley, Jr. took aim and fired upon the President and his entourage. In my small parochial schoolhouse the news spread quickly, with teachers running outside to tune their car radios into news stations for information. In that moment, viewing the passion, fervor, and intensity of my teachers, parents, and older students, I began to realize Ronald Reagan was more than a faceless name at the end of my class's listing of U.S. Presidents.

    In the hours and days which followed, my family prayed a multiplicity of prayers for the President's recovery, and along the way I discovered literally everyone in my small circle of influence believed Ronald Reagan was a leader appointed by a higher power to a higher calling.

    According to Mary Beth Brown's new book The Faith of Ronald Raegan, President Reagan felt much the same way: "God, for some reason, had seen fit to give me his blessing and allow me to live a while longer" (p. 15). Later, Ms. Brown confirms President Reagan wrote in his diary: "Whatever happens now, I owe my life to God and will try to serve him in every way I can." Others have written, "Reagan believed that God had spared his life so that he might go on to fulfill a greater purpose" (Kengor).*

    In many ways, Brown's book about Ronald Reagan's faith begins from the premise that Ronald Reagan was a man of faith, spirituality, conviction, and principle, and the book then sets about to "prove" this contention through discussing various stages of Reagan's life and certain members of his family.

    The book certainly has a historical component to the extent it recounts events and circumstances of the Reagan presidency. The book also has a spiritual component in which Brown discusses the meaning of angels and various other theological ideas. Unfortunately, I believe the book fails to effectively "connect" Ronald Reagan to the author's original premise in any meaningful way.

    I believe Brown's tome reads like one of dozens of papers and pieces I have crafted in graduate school, analyzing an author and his/her works as compared to a particular philosopher or school of criticism. In those papers (and in Brown's book), the main impetus was to retell the life, story, and facts in a way which supported my own hypotheses. The result, both for me and for Brown, is a final document which communicates the original hypothet but fails to impart the whole story, the whole truth.

    Brown's choice selection of Reagan's quotes from which a faith inference could be made is not placed alongside other quotes from which one could learn of Ronald Regan's decided humanity. Rather, Brown presents a one-sided rendition of Ronald Reagan's life and times-a view which is taken through the "lens" of Reagan's unending devotion to his faith. Noticeably absent is any real-world perspective which would show how Reagan, though obviously a man of great faith, nevertheless had doubts and fears. Amazingly, Nancy Reagan's own consultation with an astrologer is not a topic of discussion in the book.** This omission, I believe, speaks volumes regarding the manner in which Ms. Brown has penned this small book.

    In the end, I would not recommend the book for an accurate and complete rendition of history. Reagan's own An American Life amply covers that aspect. I would not recommend the book as a bastion of spiritual thought and learning

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  • Posted January 13, 2011

    I recommend this book.

    I went into this book with and open mind. This is a non fiction book. I was just in elementary school when President Ronald W. Reagan took office. My memories of him were from his speech of "Tear down this wall!" I knew that my parents liked him so that is why I was excited to read this book. I learned so much from this book. I learned about history. The history of what happened the day he was shot and that he prayed for and forgave the man who shot him the day of the shooting before he and his aids went themselves into surgery. What has inspired me is to see that a lot of this book the author uses his own words. She has done a good job to research actual words from speeches, letters interviews and his biography that he wrote. She has focused on the matter of his strong faith. This I found refreshing. I learned about faith. This president had an unshakeable faith and prayer life that we all can learn from. I learned about parenting. What I found in this book that will stay with me is that being a mother is a powerful thing. At times I felt this book was more about his mother Nelle. She and her faith was the reason her son was what I believe to be one of the most loved president since Franklin D. Roosevelt or Abe Lincoln. I enjoyed this book very much. I give it 4 stars out 5.

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  • Posted January 11, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    A Hero of Faith for Today

    This was a most enjoyable book. I was in 5th grade when Reagan was shot and I remember is very well. This book gives more detail than I have seen and was extremely interesting to read of all the miracles surrounding Reagan in that event. Truly without God's hand on him, he shouldn't have survived. At any point that bullet was created to explode at any pressure being put on it. Truly amazing. Also, you will meet Reagan's mother who helped to instill his very strong faith in God. Wonderful book to add to your library.

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  • Posted January 9, 2011

    You Only Though You Knew This Man.

    The Faith of Ronald Reagan
    By Mary Beth Brown

    I have always had the deepest admiration for President Ronald Reagan. After reading this book, my admiration has turned into a simple, heart-felt prayer, "God, raise up another one."
    Ironically, the day of his birth sounded like a page out of a book of folk lore. It was right in the middle of one of the worst blizzards Tampico, Illinois had ever seen, February 6, 1911. His father, Jack, had to trudge through the snow to find a mid-wife to deliver him. The town doctor was already out on a call. When the hefty 10 pounder made his entrance into the world, his father remarked, "He looks like a fat little Dutchman. But, who knows, he might grow up to be president someday."
    As you read the book, you will find out that his father was no modern day prophet of God. But, what is made perfectly clear is that Ronald Reagan had a deep and abiding faith that God had a purpose for everyone. That faith had been taught to him by his mother, Nelle. By her example, he learned how to trust God and how to talk to Him as if he had a direct connection. The greatest testimonies to that fact are in the interviews with his children that the author recorded in this book. Faith in God can be faked around everyone but your children. What his children said about him was what touched my heart the most.
    The book begins with the attempted assassination of President Reagan in 1983. As she re-tells the events of that day, you see the personal side of a great man that newspapers and reporters never tell you. I will share this one with you. White House Press Secretary Jim Brady had been hit in the head with a bullet meant for the President. As an unconscious Jim Brady was being wheeled into surgery, President Reagan prayed for him. However, this great man said that it was wrong for him to pray for Jim, the others and himself to be healed and have hatred for his attacker. So, he spent some time praying that God would help his attacker deal with the demons that caused him to attack them. What a man.
    In this book, you get a chance to walk with him through the Great Depression, the death of his child, the war, the Challenger disaster and many other challenges to his faith. But, by the end of the book you will pray like I do, "God, raise up another one."

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  • Posted January 8, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Truly inspirational. A must read!

    The Faith Of Ronald Reagan
    by Mary Beth Brown

    Thomas Nelson Publishing

    With warmth and insight, this best-selling book by Mary Beth Brown delves into the spiritual journey of America's 40th President and offers profound stories of the provisions God made in Ronald Reagan's life - from first making it as an actor to eventually changing the face of politics and the world.
    Supported by Ronald Reagan's own words and writings plus firsthand interviews with his family, friends, and co-workers, Brown weaves a magnificent story that inspires as it informs. Reagan's strong devotion to God will encourage believers to enter public service, allowing their faith to motivate their actions, and will draw focus to Christ's matchless sacrifice - forever near and dear to President Reagan's heart.

    I was excited to receive this book because Reagan has always been somewhat of a hero to me. I grew up in the 1980's and I was able to witness one of the greatest President's in the history of the United States -- although I didn't realize it at the time. For me, growing up in the 80's was a time of invincibility for us as a nation. No one was better than the united States; an impression that was backed up by our victories in the Olympics in 1980 and 1984. I wasn't surprised when the United States Hockey team won against Russia in 1980 because -- well, that's what we did. We were America. We always won. We were the best. When I could understand the politics of the world, I understood that we had the greatest nation because we had the greatest leader in the world. That leader was Ronald Wilson Reagan.

    This book is a terrific overview of Reagan's life, influences, and motivations leading him to the White House. Mary Beth Brown did a masterful job of going through the myriad source material to provide a solid foundation on which to prove the faith of Ronald Reagan. From his early years in church with his beloved mother Nelle, to his re-dedication to Christ after the assassination attempt on his life in 1981, Reagan lived a truly humble life that would boggle the minds of the politicians of today.

    Although repetitive at times, The Faith Of Ronald Reagan is a must-have book for anyone who loved the man while in office, or anyone who wants to know what it truly takes to be a successful leader: humility, and a desire to serve - not *be* served.


    Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."

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  • Posted January 2, 2011

    The faith that changed history!

    The Faith Of Ronald Reagan by Mary Beth Brown is an insightful, inspiring book of the 40th president of the United States. As President Reagan is one of my favorite presidents, I was happy to read this well researched biography. The focus of The Faith Of Ronald Reagan is not politics, although it is included, but how the godly instruction of his mother, through the trials of an alcoholic father, was a constant light in his life. I often heard President Reagan refer to his mother in his speeches, and was inspired, as a mother, to read how her words of Scriptural truths influenced him. Although most of the basic historical information I had already known, Mary Beth Brown provides the back story to these historical events, providing how President Reagan's strong faith in God, and the guiding hand of Providence, led him in the decisions he made which literally changed history.

    If you are a parent, this book will encourage you to continue planting those fundamental Truths to your children. If you are a home school family, please add this book to your curriculum for your teen or family reading time. If you enjoy history, this book is a must.

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