Prior to his religious conversion, St Francis of Assisi was a liar, thief, and virtual madman known for running naked in the streets. St Teresa of Avila healed herself on her deathbed by praying to her patron saint. St Augustine converted after a terrifying dream in which God beat him black and blue for his pagan beliefs. These are just some of the colourful details that can be found in this encyclopaedia which contains over 400 entries that offer biographical accounts of principal saints of the Catholic and Orthodox churches. The book explores their lives and religious journeys, mystical experiences, philosophies, and important influences. Appendixes include information on patron saints by topic, a calendar of feast days, beatified and canonized popes, an explanation of the canonization process, a glossary of terms, and a glossary of heresies. Saints profiled include: Blessed Andre Bessette; Anselm; Barnabas; Catherine of Sweden; Elizabeth Ann Steon; Fabian; Pope Gregory I; Hildegard of Bingen; John of the Cross; Lucy of Syracuse; Mark the Evangelist; Nicodemus; Rose of Lima; Simon Stylites; Thomas Aquinas; William of Norwich; and Zita.