Edit
Pope John Paul II Poster

Biography

Jump to: Overview (5) | Mini Bio (1) | Trivia (29) | Personal Quotes (30)

Overview (5)

Date of Birth 18 May 1920Wadowice, Malopolskie, Poland
Date of Death 2 April 2005Vatican City  (septic shock and irreversible cardio-circulatory collapse)
Birth NameKarol Józef Wojtyla
Nickname The Pilgrim Pope
Height 5' 10" (1.78 m)

Mini Bio (1)

Pope John Paul II was born on May 18, 1920 in Wadowice, Malopolskie, Poland as Karol Józef Wojtyla. He was a writer, known for The Papal Chase (2004), Our God's Brother (1997) and Philomena (2013). He died on April 2, 2005 in Vatican City.

Trivia (29)

Elected in 1978, he became the first non-Italian Pope in 456 years.
In the early 1980s, Marvel Comics produced his life story, in comic book form.
Was a fan of Anthony Quinn. Baptized Francesco Quinn's twin children personally.
Had his look-alike puppet in the French show Les guignols de l'info (1988).
After the death of Pope John Paul I, on September 28, 1978, the College of Cardinals met in a secret conclave in the Vatican to elect the 264th successor to St. Peter as Bishop of Rome. In the eighth round of voting, on October 16, the cardinals chose Karol Wojtyla, who accepted their decision and chose the name John Paul II.
Awarded a Presidential Medal of Freedom by George W. Bush [June 2004].
Suffered from Parkinson's Disease from 1992 until his death in 2005.
Awarded the Congressional Gold Medal on July 27th 2000, presented to him at the Vatican on January 8th 2001. John Paul II was the first Pope to receive America's highest honor.
The very first Polish Pope.
Spoke 8 languages
Childhood nickname: Lolek (an abbreviation of Karol, his birth name).
His favourite motto: "Fear not."
In 2001 he became the first Pope in history to enter a mosque.
In 1986 he became the first Pope in almost two thousand years to enter a synagogue.
Traveled more than any Pope in history, an estimated 750,000 miles to 129 countries during his Pontificate.
Survived an assassination attempt by Mehmet Ali Agca in 1981.
His official motto, "totus tuus" (all yours), referred to the Virgin.
His immediate predecessor, Pope John Paul I, died of a pulmonary embolism after serving only one month in office, aged 65.
Was succeeded by Cardinal Joseph Alois Ratzinger, who became Pope Benedict XVI (19 April 2005).
Given the frequency of his pastoral visits to foreign countries, a very popular joke about him was "God is everywhere, and Wojtyla has already been there".
Canonized 482 saints and beatified 1,338 people, believed to be more than all his predecessors combined.
The Latin form of his name was Ioannes Paulus Secundus.
Elevated to Cardinal [26 June 1967]
Ordained a Bishop [4 July 1958]
Ordained a Priest [1 November 1946]
Died three days before the death of Prince Rainier of Monaco. Monaco is the second smallest independent nation in the world. Pope John Paul II was the ruler of the Vatican City, the world's smallest independent nation.
He is the most traveled Pope in history.
At 26 years, he had the third longest reign as Pope.
It is believed that about five million people came to Rome between April 2 and 8, 2005, to take part in his funeral -- that is considered the greatest mourning ceremony in the history of the world.

Personal Quotes (30)

One discovers the common values of every culture, capable of uniting and not dividing.
Minutes after his election as Pope, speaking to the crowd about his not-so-good Italian: "Se mi sbaglio mi corrigerete" ("if I'm wrong you will 'corrected' me" - "corrigerete" is wrong in Italian). This got a huge applause.
"Believe. Do not be afraid to believe." (His first words after being elected Pope).
Stupidity is also a gift from God, but it should not be abused.
A nation that kills its own children is a nation without hope.
And what I can say in the end? I am sorry to leave. (The sentence spontaneously added to his speech at the Balice Airport, Kraków on August 19, 2002 when he was about to finish his very last pilgrimage to Poland.)
"I would like to add that this same song of the "Oasis" accompanied me 23 years ago outside of the homeland. I could hear it in my ears when I heard the verdict of the conclave. I have not forgotten this song of the "Oasis" all these years. It was like some kind of a hidden breath of the homeland. It was my guide on the variety of paths of the Church. It was this song that often led me spiritually here, to Blonie of Kraków, to the foot of the Kosciuszko Hill. I thank you, song of the "Oasis". I thank you Blonie of Kraków for the hospitality you have shown so many times, especially today. May God reward you. And I would like to add: See you again. But this is completely in God's hands. I entrust this entirely to the mercy of God." (After more than two million people had sung his favorite song titled "Barka" at the end of the Holy Mass in Blonie Park, Kraków, on August 18 2002.)
"When I first visited this shrine in 1979, I asked you to pray for me, while I am alive and after my death. Today I thank you and all the pilgrims of Kalwaria for these prayers, for the spiritual support I continually receive. I continue to ask you: do not stop praying - once again I repeat it - as long as I am alive and after my death." (At the end of the Holy Mass in the shrine of Our Lady of Kalwaria, Kalwaria Zebrzydowska, August 19, 2002, few hours before the departure for Rome that ended his very last journey to Poland)
"You are our dearly beloved brothers, and in a certain way it could be said that you are our elder brother." (Addressing Jews during his historic visit to Rome's synagogue in 1986)
"I am a young person aged 83." (Speaking to Spanish youths in Madrid, May 2003)
The Pope cannot remain a prisoner of the Vatican. I want to go to everybody...from the nomads of the steppes to the monks and nuns in their convents...I want to cross the threshold of every home.
"No to war! War is not always inevitable. It is always a defeat for humanity." (To diplomats on January 13, 2003, as the Iraq war loomed)
"Physical condition or advancing of age are not obstacles to a perfect life. God does not look at external things but at the soul." (On his 83rd birthday, May 18, 2003)
"It is not easy to love with a deep love, which lies in the authentic gift of self. This love can only be learned by penetrating the mystery of God's love. Looking at him, being one with his fatherly heart, we are able to look with new eyes at our brothers and sisters, with an attitude of unselfishness and solidarity, of generosity and forgiveness. All this is mercy!" (Homily during the Holy Mass in St. Peter's Square for the Canonization of Sister Mary Faustina Kowalska, Rome, April 30, 2000)
"No. John Paul Two, He Loves You" (Holy Father's answer to young people chanting the phrase "John Paul Two, We Love You")
"At the end of this solemn liturgy, I desire to say that many of my personal memories are tied to this place. During the Nazi occupation, when I was working in the Solvay factory near here, I used to come here. Even now I recall the street that goes from Borek Falecki to Debniki that I took every day going to work on the different turns with the wooden shoes on my feet. They're the shoes that we used to wear then. How was it possible to imagine that one day the man with the wooden shoes would consecrate the Basilica of the Divine Mercy at Lagiewniki of Kraków." (Personal remarks made before the final blessing at the end of the Holy Mass, Kraków-Lagiewniki, August 17, 2002)
In the mercy of God the world will find peace and mankind will find happiness!
I have a sweet tooth for song and music. This is my Polish sin.
I hope to have communion with the people, that is the most important thing.
Freedom consists not in doing what we like, but in having the right to do what we ought.
"What we talked about will have to remain a secret between him and me. I spoke to him as a brother whom I have pardoned and who has my complete trust." (On his conversation to Ali Agca)
"Every return to Poland is like a return to the family home, where the smallest objects remind us of what is closest and dearest to our hearts." (Welcome address, Wroclaw Airport, Poland, May 31, 1997)
"As I return to the Vatican, I do not abandon the land of my birth. I take with me the image of my homeland, from the Baltic to the Tatra, and I keep in my heart all that I have been granted to experience among my fellow countrymen. I want to assure you once again that in my thoughts and prayers Poland and the Polish people have a special place. I ask you, beloved brothers and sisters, to support me in my Petrine ministry for as long as Divine Providence enables me to carry it out." (Farewell address, Balice Airport, Kraków, Poland, June 17, 1999)
I truly come at the service of unity in love, but I come as a friend, too, and I am deeply grateful for your welcome. I have always admired your love of freedom, your generous hospitality to other peoples in their adversity; as a son of Poland I have the strongest, most personal reason for this admiration and for the thanks that go with it. (Homily during the Holly Mass in Westminster Cathedral, London, May 28, 1982)
As the family goes, so goes the nation and so goes the whole world in which we live.
I had positive experiences in many settings and from many people, and God's voice reached me through them.
You are young, and the Pope is old, 82 or 83 years of life is not the same as 22 or 23. But the Pope still fully identifies with your hopes and aspirations. Although I have lived through much darkness, under harsh totalitarian regimes, I have seen enough evidence to be unshakably convinced that no difficulty, no fear is so great that it can completely suffocate the hope that springs eternal in the hearts of the young. You are our hope, the young are our hope. (To the youth gathered at the 17th World Youth Day, Toronto, Downsview Park, July 28, 2002)
Violence and arms can never resolve the problems of men.
Radical changes in world politics leave America with a heightened responsibility to be - for the world - an example of a genuinely free, democratic, just and humane society.
Life was about taking care of body and mind.

See also

Other Works | Publicity Listings | Official Sites | Contact Info

Contribute to This Page