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April 15th, 2011

Pope John Paul II : A Prophetic Journey

Pope John Paul II's prophetic Journey

Karol Wojtyla grew up in the southern Polish village of Wadowice, near Krakow. He was the son of an army sergeant. He had a strict, devout upbringing. His mother died when he was nine and his brother died from scarlet fever before he was 14. As a young man, Karol excelled at sports, including soccer and skiing.

He had a love of acting and the theatre. He was a 19 years old teenager in 1939 when German tanks invaded Poland. He experienced the suppression and cruelty of Hitler’s Nazi regime and saw his friends sent off to concentration camps.

World War II and the Nazi occupation forced Karol Wojtyla to work as a labourer in a marble quarry. His father died when he was 20 years old. He was left alone. He studied theology from 1942 and was forced into hiding in 1944 following an attack on religious teaching. Continuing his studies after the war, he was ordained a priest at age 26 yrs in 1946.

He was a special man to his parish often taking them on hikes into nature that he so loved. He was promoted to archbishop of Krakow when he was 44 yrs. Three years later he was a cardinal. Karol Wojtyla’s election as Pope in 1978 stunned the Catholic world. Not one expert had tipped the 58 year old bishop of Krakow for the top position.

Taking the name John Paul II, the new pontiff, signaled a new era in Catholic affairs. He stood against Poland’s Communist regime and that had brought him respect. But, he was not part of the Vatican “in-crowd” and, above all, he was the first non-Italian pope in more than 450 years. He went on to become one of the most familiar faces in the world.

His papal odyssey covered more than 120 countries and he earned himself the reputation of an international fighter for freedom. The Pope traveled constantly. After his appointment, he quickly established himself as an instantly recognizable figurehead to the world’s largest Christian community as well as to the world’s non-Christian community. He was dynamic and approachable. He visited more than 100 countries and is estimated to have effectively circled the globe 27 times.

However, his desire for closeness with people almost led to his death. In St. Peter’s Square 1981, he was shot and seriously wounded by Mehmet Ali Agca – a Turk. After recovery, he visited and forgave his assassin.

The Pope was beset by physical illness beginning with a tumor being removed from his colon in 1992. He then dislocated his shoulder in 1993. He broke his femur in 1994 and had his appendix removed in 1996. In 2001 an orthopedic surgeon confirmed what had been suspected for some time that the Pope was suffering from Parkinson’s disease.

On 14 March 2004, the remarkable life of the pontiff reached another milestone when his papacy became the third-longest in the history of the Catholic Church. The Pope marked his 84th birthday in May of that year, but despite deteriorating health he refused to let up his grueling schedule of appearances and foreign trips. On April 2nd, 2005, the Pope’s sick body finally set his soul free as he lay in his Vatican apartment. John Paul II joyfully passed on his incredible prophetic journey and mission on earth complete.

Regardless, millions of people worldwide have loved Pope John Paul II and continue to do so beyond his death – people that are not only Catholics, but also Muslims, Buddhists, Sikhs, Jews and Atheists – people that completely disagree with the Church’s policies love him no less, and the young, they adore him. Loved by all ages, loved by all faiths, a master of communication with great humor, and a prophet will be beatified on 1st of May 2011.

– – – written by Br. John Singarayar SVD

April 3rd, 2011

Pope John Paul II Slideshow

Download : Pope John Paul II Slideshow

Click on the link above to download Pope John Paul II slideshow (2.27 MB)


Definition of Forgetting: Cessation of memory, Cessation of affection, Neglect of something that should be kept in mind. Now I am going to ask YOU a question: Did you forget me? If you did, I am going to remind you who I was.

I am Lolek and this is my story.

I was born on May 18, 1920 in Wadowaice, Poland. This is my mother, Emilia She went with God, but gave me the best gift, LIFE. My parents died when I was small. And I had to walk alone…

I met my BEST FRIEND when I was only 8 years old, And I never forgot Him.

I was a joyful youngster,I liked soccer, swimming and was a very good student. When I grew up I liked to do theatre, and my friends wanted me to continue. I lived the horrors of the World War ll. I could not go to school openly because of the Nazis. We had to do it secretly.

I surrendered my life to MY FRIEND and in turn I received so much more…One day, I was appointed to be the leader of your church and then my life and hopefully yours was changed.

I had to work hard. But I was supported by all. I used all the tools available. There were people who believed that I was wrong but I made some friends, just a few.

I fell once, But with love, I stood up and forgave. I realized that I was not alone. There were people who shared my love for others and my love for children and for the young people, who I went towards so many times. In the end they were coming to me.

I traveled and I met YOU. WE were together many times. I tried to identify myself with YOU. But that time is over…

I would have liked to continue with you. but it was time to go see MY FRIEND. And say… MISSION ACCOMPLISHED!

I saw people shed tears for me. They were so sad. I saw them suffering. Don’t feel that you are walking alone. I never did! I prayed for YOU. And for YOUR sins. I continued in my prayers & meditation.

We must remain strong. See HIS greatness, compared to the smallness of problems. And I thank YOU for being with me!!! Thank you for showing me how much YOU needed me !!!!!! Because I also needed YOU and I will be watching over YOU.

I will never forget YOU. Remember me smiling !!!!! Help my brother, who will continue with the work of Christ. That he might not forget…I am not going…I will leave…but I will remain with YOU.

John Paul II
2nd Anniversary of his meeting with God

July 3rd, 2010

John Paul II Pictures – Set 03

John Paul II Pictures – The third set of John Paul II images are given above. There are twenty of them above. Take a look.

John Paul II was a magnificent pope who presided over a controversial pontificate, at times daring and defensive, inspiring and insular. John Paul II, 263rd successor of St. Peter, leaves behind the irony of a world more united because of his life and legacy, and a church more divided.

Pope John Paul II, 84, died April 2 at 9:37 p.m. in his private quarters at the end of a long and public illness. Though the effects of Parkinson’s disease had been evident for a number of years, the pope’s health declined precipitously over a period of a few days.  On March 31 he suffered heart and circulatory collapse. The next day the Vatican said his kidneys were failing and that his breathing had become shallow. In the hours just before his death, the Vatican announced that he was fading out of consciousness.

John Paul II was a stunningly successful historical actor; biographer Jonathan Kwitny once called him “the man of the century” In an age in which institutional religion was supposed to be sliding toward extinction, he applied the force of his enormous personality to revitalizing it.

John Paul was among the key forces in the collapse of European communism. He did it not by fueling an arms race or by threatening Armageddon, but through moral leadership and the social idea of Solidarity.

Through his constant travels, John Paul carried a media spotlight to corners of the globe that would otherwise never have commanded public attention. He urged people to think of this as one planet, to recognize a common humanity beneath and beyond differences of language and race and class.

John Paul was the first pope in the age of CNN, and he seemed born for the part. He wrote books, put out compact discs, staged massive youth rallies that at times felt like Rolling Stones concerts, and utilized all the other tools of pop super stardom to promote the message of Christ. He did not shrink from modernity, but challenged secular culture on its own turf. Often enough, he prevailed.

He was a master of grand historical gestures. The image of the pope, this child of Poland who grew up just miles from Auschwitz, placing a handwritten note of remorse for Christian hostility to Jews in the Western Wall was among the 20th century’s most splendid icons. In 1986 he became the first pope to visit a Jewish synagogue since the age of Peter, and in 2001 the first pope to enter an Islamic mosque. In his final years, when age and illness took hold, John Paul managed to keep crowds spellbound without so much as the capacity to speak or move.

Where he felt passionately, John Paul was not a man to be shackled by the poor lists of his predecessors’ fashions. He made his own manners, whether it was assembling leaders of world religions to pray for peace in Assisi against the advice of curialists worried about syncretism, or apologizing to the Orthodox in Athens, Greece, for centuries of Catholic maltreatment, over the objections of ecumenical hawks who felt being pope means never having to say you’re sorry.

Towards the end of John Paul’s long reign, his physical decay unfolded before the eyes of a world both dazzled by his will, and sometimes aghast at the cruelty of a vocation that would impose such burdens. The pope struggled to walk, he slurred his speech and drooled badly, his hearing failed, and his facial expression became increasingly frozen. Yet he soldiered on, bearing his thorns in the flesh with grit and good humor. For a world that has made an idol out of youth and beauty, this disabled pope was a strong counter-witness. Jean Vanier, the founder of the L’Arche community that makes its life among disabled persons, said of the bowed but not beaten pope: “He was never more beautiful.”

John Paul II was a man of great spiritual depth, of integrity, and of imagination. He understood intuitively the famous advice of Chicago architect Daniel Burnham: “Make no little plans. They have no magic to stir men’s blood.”

Karol Wojtyla, motherless boy, proud, confident priest, controlling pope and fearless world leader in death challenges history to describe who he was and what he did. He was a formidable pope. It will be a formidable task.

John Paul II Pictures – Set 01

John Paul II Pictures – Set 02

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