THE STIGMATIST: A novel of Mysticism & International Intrigue


American pilgrims at an apparition site in Spain are caught up in frightening visions, which appear to signal the end of the current Age.

Fr. Anthony Santorelli, sent by the Vatican to investigate, is given a message for the Pope foreshadowing a series of future events.

To authenticate his role as a messenger and prophet, the priest is mystically marked with stigmata in his hands, feet and side, replicating the five wounds of Christ on the Cross.

The Stigmatist is the story of Fr. Santorelli's struggles to accept and fulfill his new calling as the visions spread inexorably from country to country, triggering plots within and against the Catholic Church, and international intrigues, terrorist acts, and nuclear war.


A "thinking and praying person's thriller"— that's how one priest has characterized The Stigmatist. His kind words reflect three years of day-and-night efforts to craft a work of mysticism and international intrigue ... MORE

Every now and then something new comes along that is a real treat, and It is the new novel The Stigmatist by Hurd Baruch, author of Light on Light, the visions of Anne Catherine Emmerich. MORE


    Padre Pio of Pietralcina was adoring Christ on the Cross in the Capuchin friary of San Giovanni Rotondo when he saw a great light and he had a vision of the corpus transforming itself into "a great Exalted Being, all blood, from whom there came forth beams of light with shafts of flame that wounded me in the hands and feet."

    The five wounds of Christ, which he had previously received internally, became open stigmata which bled copiously for fifty years, until shortly before his death in 1968.


    St. Padre Pio was the first priest among the small number of "chosen souls" over the centuries—St. Francis of Assisi and the Blessed Anne Catherine Emmerich among them—to be mystically marked as a stigmatist.

    News reports indicate that there are three stigmatic priests alive today, all living in seclusion, unlike the action hero of The Stigmatist, who is thrust into intrigues inside the Vatican and in a number of countries as calamities unfold.


    Many people who accept New Age mystical nonsense look askance at stigmata as medieval fakery. Yet, at the request of the Church, stigmatists submit to medical examinations to authenticate their marks as being true, deep wounds, and not surface scratches or blemishes. Moreover, some stigmatists have demonstrated other spiritual gifts. Padre Pio read the souls of penitents in the confessional, and exhibited other mystical powers such as foreseeing future events, healing physical ailments, communicating with souls in Purgatory, and bilocation. The Blessed Anne Catherine Emmerich, too, read souls, and she had detailed visions of the life of Christ, which the author summarized and commented on in his book Light on Light.


    Religious mysticism can give rise to religious fanaticism. In The Stigmatist both the hero and the antihero, a future leader of Iran's Revolutionary Guards, are men committed to serving God, in their own way. The first believes that he is doing God's will by suffering for the redemption of the world; the second is convinced that it is God's will for him to inflict suffering on others, and that through nuclear terrorism he can help bring about the "return of the Mahdi"—a human but mystical figure thought to have been hidden in heaven for centuries, who is expected to come back in the Last Days to bring about universal peace and justice, and the rule of Islam. This is but one of the threats which the stigmatist senses and attempts to forestall.


    While the hero of The Stigmatist is a dedicated priest who employs all his talents to advance the Kingdom, he has a hard time accepting the words of Jesus that anyone wishing to come after Him must take up his cross daily (Lk 9:23). He considers the stigmata and the agony they cause to be an unwelcome hindrance to his service of God. He resists being transformed from a servant who suffers into a Suffering Servant, even to the point of challenging God, like Job, for how God is using him. Their confrontation ends in a climax which is both shocking and spiritually uplifting.

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