The Keys of the Kingdom tells the story of a man with great courage and conviction, a man unafraid to stand up for what is right. Francis Chisholm-a kindhearted and straightforward Scottish priest-walks a path all his own, making him unpopular with other members of the clergy. Ostracized by the clerical community and looked down on by his superiors, Chisholm takes a position in China where he supervises a mission beset by poverty, civil war, and plague. He encounters fierce resistance from the local Chinese who distrust his motives, especially as they do not understand or condone his faith. Despite enormous obstacles and temptations, Father Chisholm continues to live in accordance with what he holds as the ultimate truth-serving humanity is the one true religion of the world. The Keys of the Kingdom was adapted into the 1944 film starring Gregory Peck as Father Francis Chisholm, a role for which he earned his first Best Actor Oscar Nomination. The Keys of the Kingdom is considered by many to be A.J. Cronin's finest work.