Pope John Paul II

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For an adequate formation of a culture, the involvement of the whole man is required, whereby he exercises his creativity, intelligence, and knowledge of the world and of people.

John Paul II (born Karol Józef Wojtyła; 18 May 19202 April 2005) was the head of the Catholic Church and sovereign of the Vatican City State from 1978 until his death in 2005. He was elected pope by the second papal conclave of 1978, which was called after John Paul I, who had been elected in August to succeed Pope Paul VI, died after 33 days. Cardinal Wojtyła was elected on the third day of the conclave and adopted the name of his predecessor in tribute to him. John Paul II is recognised as helping to end Communist rule in his native Poland and the rest of Europe.

John Paul II attempted to improve the Catholic Church's relations with Judaism, Islam, and the Eastern Orthodox Church. He maintained the Church's previous positions on such matters as abortion, artificial contraception, the ordination of women, and a celibate clergy, and although he supported the reforms of the Second Vatican Council, he was seen as generally conservative in their interpretation. He was one of the most travelled world leaders in history, visiting 129 countries during his pontificate. As part of his special emphasis on the universal call to holiness, he beatified 1,340 and canonised 483 people, more than the combined tally of his predecessors during the preceding five centuries. John Paul II was the second-longest-serving pope in modern history after Pope Pius IX.


Crossing the Threshold of Hope (1994)[edit]

  • Young people have a special place in the heart of the Holy Father, who often repeats that the whole Church looks to them with particular hope for a new beginning of evangelization.
    • Paul II, Pope John. Crossing the Threshold of Hope, Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group. Kindle Edition.

Familiaris Consortio (1981)[edit]

  • The Church is called upon to manifest anew to everyone, with clear and stronger conviction, her will to promote human life by every means and to defend it against all attacks, in whatever condition or state of development it is found. Thus the Church condemns as a grave offense against human dignity and justice all those activities of governments or other public authorities which attempt to limit in any way the freedom of couples in deciding about children. Consequently, any violence applied by such authorities in favor of contraception or, still worse, of sterilization and procured abortion, must be altogether condemned and forcefully rejected. Likewise to be denounced as gravely unjust are cases where, in international relations, economic help given for the advancement of peoples is made conditional on programs of contraception, sterilization and procured abortion.
    • Apostolic exhortation Familiaris Consortio on the role of the Christian family in the modern world, 22 November 1981, St Peter's Basilica
  • Christian marriage and the Christian family build up the Church: for in the family the human person is not only brought into being and progressively introduced by means of education into the human community, but by means of the rebirth of baptism and education in the faith the child is also introduced into God's family, which is the Church. The human family, disunited by sin, is reconstituted in its unity by the redemptive power of the death and Resurrection of Christ. Christian marriage, by participating in the salvific efficacy of this event, constitutes the natural setting in which the human person is introduced into the great family of the Church. The commandment to grow and multiply, given to man and woman in the beginning, in this way reaches its whole truth and full realization.
    • Apostolic exhortation Familiaris Consortio on the role of the Christian family in the modern world, 22 November 1981, St Peter's Basilica
  • In virginity or celibacy, the human being is awaiting, also in a bodily way, the eschatological marriage of Christ with the Church, giving himself or herself completely to the Church in the hope that Christ may give Himself to the Church in the full truth of eternal life. The celibate person thus anticipates in his or her flesh the new world of the future resurrection. By virtue of this witness, virginity or celibacy keeps alive in the Church a consciousness of the mystery of marriage and defends it from any reduction and impoverishment. Virginity or celibacy, by liberating the human heart in a unique way,[40] "so as to make it burn with greater love for God and all humanity,"[41] bears witness that the Kingdom of God and His justice is that pearl of great price which is preferred to every other value no matter how great, and hence must be sought as the only definitive value. It is for this reason that the Church, throughout her history, has always defended the superiority of this charism to that of marriage, by reason of the wholly singular link which it has with the Kingdom of God.
    • Apostolic exhortation Familiaris Consortio on the role of the Christian family in the modern world, 22 November 1981, St Peter's Basilica

Fides et Ratio (1998)[edit]

  • Faith and reason are like two wings on which the human spirit rises to the contemplation of truth; and God has placed in the human heart a desire to know the truth—in a word, to know himself—so that, by knowing and loving God, men and women may also come to the fullness of truth about themselves.
  • Born and nurtured when the human being first asked questions about the reason for things and their purpose, philosophy shows in different modes and forms that the desire for truth is part of human nature itself.
  • to men and women there falls the task of exploring truth with their reason, and in this their nobility consists.
  • Every truth—if it really is truth—presents itself as universal, even if it is not the whole truth. If something is true, then it must be true for all people and at all times.
  • human being is by nature a philosopher
  • to argue according to rigorous rational criteria is to guarantee that the results attained are universally valid.
  • philosophy must obey its own rules and be based upon its own principles; truth, however, can only be one.
  • Quite apart from the fact that it conflicts with the demands and the content of the word of God, nihilism is a denial of the humanity and of the very identity of the human being. It should never be forgotten that the neglect of being inevitably leads to losing touch with objective truth and therefore with the very ground of human dignity.
  • Once the truth is denied to human beings, it is pure illusion to try to set them free. Truth and freedom either go together hand in hand or together they perish in misery.
  • To believe it possible to know a universally valid truth is in no way to encourage intolerance; on the contrary, it is the essential condition for sincere and authentic dialogue between persons. On this basis alone is it possible to overcome divisions and to journey together towards full truth
  • Truth can never be confined to time and culture; in history it is known, but it also reaches beyond history.
  • faith and reason “mutually support each other”; each influences the other, as they offer to each other a purifying critique and a stimulus to pursue the search for deeper understanding

Novo Millennio Ineunte (2001)[edit]

  • The program already exists: it is the plan found in the Gospel and in the living Tradition, it is the same as ever. Ultimately, it has its center in Christ himself, who is to be known, loved and imitated, so that in him we may live the life of the Trinity, and with him transform history until its fulfilment in the heavenly Jerusalem. This is a program which does not change with shifts of times and cultures, even though it takes account of time and culture for the sake of true dialogue and effective communication. This program for all times is our program for the Third Millennium.
    • §29

Redemptoris Missio (1990)[edit]

  • Today the Church must face other challenges and push forward to new frontiers, both in the initial mission ad gentes and in the new evangelization of those peoples who have already heard Christ proclaimed.
    • Redemptoris Missio §30
  • The universal call to holiness is closely linked to the universal call to mission.
    • Redemptoris Missio §90

Veritatis Splendor (1993)[edit]

  • Truth enlightens man's intelligence and shapes his freedom.
    • Veritatis Splendor §1
  • The moral life presents itself as the response due to the many gratuitous initiatives taken by God out of love for man.

Other Quotes by Pope John Paul II[edit]

  • Totus Tuus
    • All Yours
    • Wojtyła's episcopal and, later, papal motto, expressing his intense devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary
  • It is unbecoming for a cardinal to ski badly.
    • When asked whether it was becoming for a cardinal to ski (Cardinal Wojtyła was an avid skier).
      • Source: Pakenham Longford (Earl of), Frank (1982). Pope John Paul II: an authorized biography. W. Morrow. 
  • Carissimi fratelli e sorelle, siamo ancora tutti addolorati dopo la morte del nostro amatissimo Papa Giovanni Paolo I. Ed ecco che gli Eminentissimi Cardinali hanno chiamato un nuovo vescovo di Roma. Lo hanno chiamato da un paese lontano... lontano, ma sempre così vicino per la comunione nella fede e nella tradizione cristiana. (...) Non so se posso bene spiegarmi nella vostra... nostra lingua italiana. Se mi sbaglio mi correggerete.
    • Dear brothers and sisters, we are all still grieved after the death of our most beloved John Paul I. And now the eminent cardinals have called a new bishop of Rome. They have called him from a far country... far, but always near through the communion of faith and in the Christian tradition. (...) I don't know if I can make myself clear in your... in our Italian language. If I make a mistake, you will correct me.
    • Note: the pope intentionally mispronounced the Italian word correggerete, "you will correct".
    • First address to the faithful in Saint Peter's Square, Vatican City, on 16 October 1978
  • I wołam, ja, syn polskiej ziemi, a zarazem ja: Jan Paweł II papież, wołam z całej głębi tego tysiąclecia, wołam w przeddzień święta Zesłania, wołam wraz z wami wszystkimi: Niech zstąpi Duch Twój! Niech zstąpi Duch Twój! I odnowi oblicze ziemi. Tej ziemi!
    • And I cry – I who am a son of the land of Poland and who am also Pope John Paul II – I cry from all the depths of this Millennium, I cry on the vigil of Pentecost: Let your Spirit descend! Let your Spirit descend! And renew the face of the earth. The face of this land!
    • Note: the Polish word ziemi means both "earth" and "land"; on the former utterance, it refers to the entire planet, on the latter – to Poland.
    • Homily during the Holy Mass in Victory Square in Warsaw on 2 June 1979, during the pope's first apostolic journey to Poland
  • This inscription awakens the memory of people whose sons and daughters were destined for total extermination. This people draws its origin from Abraham, our Father in faith. The very people that received from God the commandment, thou shalt not kill, itself experienced in a special measure what is meant by killing. It is not permissible for anyone to pass by this inscription with indifference.
    • About a Hebrew commemorative plaque in the homily during the Holy Mass at the Auschwitz-Birkenau Nazi German concentration camp on 7 June 1979, during the pope's first apostolic journey to Poland
  • Surely it is important for America that the moral truths which make freedom possible should be passed on to each new generation. Every generation of Americans needs to know that freedom consists not in doing what we like, but in having the right to do what we ought.
    • On freedom
      • Source [2] Oriole Park at Camden Yards, Baltimore, Sunday, 8 October 1995
  • Faced with problems and disappointments, many people will try to escape from their responsibility: escape in selfishness, escape in sexual pleasure, escape in drugs, escape in violence, escape in indifference and cynical attitudes. But today, I propose to you the option of love, which is the opposite of escape.
    • Homily during the Holy Mass on Boston Common in Boston, Massachusetts, on 1 October 1979, during the pope's first apostolic journey to the United States
  • The great danger for family life, in the midst of any society whose idols are pleasure, comfort and independence, lies in the fact that people close their hearts and become selfish.
    • Homily during the Holy Mass at the Capital Mall in Washington, D.C., on 7 October 1979, during the pope's first apostolic journey to the United States
  • Every human being, every people with its culture, has its own place in the benevolent eyes of the Catholic—universal—Church, and in the heart of the one who is that Church's Pastor. This is the Gospel of love received from Jesus Christ: it embraces all nations in a spirit of service, bringing them a word of salvation and fraternal help. In the case of Vietnam, everyone knows and appreciates the courage in working, the tenacity in difficulties, the family sense and the other natural virtues of which you give proof. In your country which has cruelly suffered the trials of war, yοu have had to work hard at the rebuilding of the country; yοu have had to make great efforts in order to face the various problems of education, health and so on. The Church takes a lively interest in these efforts marked by solidarity, and she encourages them. She hopes that they will succeed in giving to every individual not only food and education but also the opportunity to develop freely each one's best potentialities, including religious aspiration, and in a climate of peace with the other nations that are seeking, like Vietnam, to live in tranquillity and dignity.
    • Radio Address of the Pope to the People of Vietnam during the Flight from Port Moresby to Bangkok (10 May 1984)
  • Right from the beginning of my ministry in St. Peter’s See in Rome, I consider this message [of divine mercy] my special task. Providence has assigned it to me in the present situation of man, the Church and the world. It could be said that precisely this situation assigned that message to me as my task before God.
    • November 22, 1981 at the Shrine of Merciful Love in Todi-Collevalenza, Italy
  • The cemetery of the victims of human cruelty in our century is extended to include yet another vast cemetery, that of the unborn.
  • The Redeemer suffered in place of man and for man. Every man has his own share in the Redemption. Each one is also called to share in that suffering through which the Redemption was accomplished. He is called to share in that suffering through which all human suffering has also been redeemed. In bringing about the Redemption through suffering, Christ has also raised human suffering to the level of the Redemption. Thus each man, in his suffering, can also become a sharer in the redemptive suffering of Christ.
  • Christians and Muslims, we have many things in common, as believers and as human beings. We live in the same world, marked by many signs of hope, but also by multiple signs of anguish. For us, Abraham is a very model of faith in God, of submission to his will and of confidence in his goodness. We believe in the same God, the one God, the living God, the God who created the world and brings his creatures to their perfection.
    • Address to young Muslims in Casablanca on 19 August 1985, during the pope's apostolic journey to Morocco
    • Source: Libreria Editrice Vaticana
  • The Jewish religion is not extrinsic, but in a certain way intrinsic to our own religion. Therefore, we have a relationship which we do not have with any other religion. You are our dearly beloved brothers, and, in a certain way, it can be said that you are our elder brothers.
  • Drodzy bracia i siostry Kaszubi! Strzeżcie tych wartości i tego dziedzictwa, które stanowią o Waszej tożsamości.
    • Dear Kashubian brothers and sisters! Cherish the values and the heritage that define your identity.
    • Homily during the Holy Mass in Gdynia 11 June 1987, during the pope's apostolic journey to Poland
  • Science develops best when its concepts and conclusions are integrated into the broader human culture and its concerns for ultimate meaning and value. Scientists cannot, therefore, hold themselves entirely aloof from the sorts of issues dealt with by philosophers and theologians. By devoting to these issues something of the energy and care they give to their research in science, they can help others realize more fully the human potentialities of their discoveries. They can also come to appreciate for themselves that these discoveries cannot be a genuine substitute for knowledge of the truly ultimate. Science can purify religion from error and superstition; religion can purify science from idolatry and false absolutes. Each can draw the other into a wider world, a world in which both can flourish.
    • Letter to the Rev. George V. Coyne, S.J., Director of the Vatican Observatory, 1 June 1988
    • Source: Russell, Robert J.; Stoeger, William R.; Pope John Paul II; Coyne, George V. (1990). John Paul II on science and religion: reflections on the new view from Rome. Vatican Observatory Publications. 
  • every individual is made in the image of God, insofar as he or she is a rational and free creature capable of knowing God and loving him.
    • Apostolic Letter Mulieris Dignitatem, 15 August 1988
  • In the "unity of the two", man and woman are called from the beginning not only to exist "side by side" or "together", but they are also called to exist mutually "one for the other".
    • Apostolic Letter Mulieris Dignitatem, 15 August 1988
    • Source: www.vatican.va
  • All human activity takes place within a culture and interacts with culture. For an adequate formation of a culture, the involvement of the whole man is required, whereby he exercises his creativity, intelligence, and knowledge of the world and of people. Furthermore, he displays his capacity for self-control, personal sacrifice, solidarity and readiness to promote the common good.
  • many women, especially as a result of social and cultural conditioning, do not become fully aware of their dignity. Others are victims of a materialistic and hedonistic outlook which views them as mere objects of pleasure, and does not hesitate to organize the exploitation of women, even of young girls, into a despicable trade. Special concern needs to be shown for these women, particularly by other women who, thanks to their own upbringing and sensitivity, are able to help them discover their own inner worth and resources. Women need to help women, and to find support in the valuable and effective contributions which associations, movements and groups, many of them of a religious character, have proved capable of making in this regard.
    • Message for the XXVIII World Day of Peace, 8 December 1994
  • Women have the right to insist that their dignity be respected. At the same time, they have the duty to work for the promotion of the dignity of all persons, men as well as women.
    • Message for the XXVIII World Day of Peace, 8 December 1994
  • Man is called to a fullness of life which far exceeds the dimensions of his earthly existence, because it consists in sharing the very life of God. The loftiness of this supernatural vocation reveals the greatness and the inestimable value of human life even in its temporal phase.
  • (...) De nouvelles connaissances conduisent à reconnaître dans la théorie de l'évolution plus qu'une hypothèse. Il est en effet remarquable que cette théorie se soit progressivement imposée à l'esprit des chercheurs, à la suite d'une série de découvertes faites dans diverses disciplines du savoir. La convergence, nullement recherchée ou provoquée, des résultats de travaux menés indépendamment les uns des autres, constitue par elle même un argument significatif en faveur de cette théorie.
    • (...) New knowledge has led to the recognition of the theory of evolution as more than a hypothesis. It is indeed remarkable that this theory has been progressively accepted by researchers, following a series of discoveries in various fields of knowledge. The convergence, neither sought nor fabricated, of the results of work that was conducted independently is in itself a significant argument in favor of this theory.
    • Note: early news reports mistranslated the French phrase plus qu'une hypothèse as "more than one hypothesis".[3]
    • Message to the participants in the Plenary of the Pontifical Academy of Sciences, 22 October 1996
  • Never again war! Never again hatred and intolerance!
    • Address on arrival at the Sarajevo Airport on 12 April 1997, during the pope's apostolic journey to Bosnia-Herzegovina
    • Source: Libreria Editrice Vaticana
  • Not all are called to be artists in the specific sense of the term. Yet, as Genesis has it, all men and women are entrusted with the task of crafting their own life: in a certain sense, they are to make of it a work of art, a masterpiece.
  • peace is possible. It needs to be implored from God as his gift, but it also needs to be built day by day with his help, through works of justice and love.
    • Message for the celebration of XXXIII World Day of Peace, 8 December 1999
  • wars are often the cause of further wars because they fuel deep hatreds, create situations of injustice and trample upon people's dignity and rights. Wars generally do not resolve the problems for which they are fought and therefore, in addition to causing horrendous damage, they prove ultimately futile. War is a defeat for humanity. Only in peace and through peace can respect for human dignity and its inalienable rights be guaranteed.
    • Message for the celebration of XXXIII World Day of Peace, 8 December 1999
  • There is no true peace without fairness, truth, justice and solidarity.
    • Message for the celebration of XXXIII World Day of Peace, 8 December 1999
  • God of our fathers, you chose Abraham and his descendants to bring your Name to the Nations: we are deeply saddened by the behaviour of those who in the course of history have caused these children of yours to suffer, and asking your forgiveness we wish to commit ourselves to genuine brotherhood with the people of the Covenant.
    • Written prayer placed by the pope into the Western Wall in Jerusalem on 26 March 2000, during his apostolic journey to the Holy Land
  • It can be said, in fact, that research, by exploring the greatest and the smallest, contributes to the glory of God which is reflected in every part of the universe.
  • A society will be judged on the basis of how it treats its weakest members; and among the most vulnerable are surely the unborn and the dying.
  • Any procedure which tends to commercialize human organs or to consider them as items of exchange or trade must be considered morally unacceptable, because to use the body as an "object" is to violate the dignity of the human person. Acknowledgement of the unique dignity of the human person has a further underlying consequence: vital organs which occur singly in the body can be removed only after death, that is from the body of someone who is certainly dead. This requirement is self-evident, since to act otherwise would mean intentionally to cause the death of the donor in disposing of his organ.
    • Address to the 18th International Congress of the Transplantation Society, 29 August 2000
  • It is helpful to recall that the death of the person is a single event, consisting in the total disintegration of that unitary and integrated whole that is the personal self. The death of the person, understood in this primary sense, is an event which no scientific technique or empirical method can identify directly. Human experience shows that once death occurs certain biological signs inevitably follow, which medicine has learnt to recognize with increasing precision. In this sense, the "criteria" for ascertaining death used by medicine today should not be understood as the technical-scientific determination of the exact moment of a person's death, but as a scientifically secure means of identifying the biological signs that a person has indeed died.
    • Address to the 18th International Congress of the Transplantation Society, 29 August 2000
  • The twentieth century was the great century of Christian martyrs, and this is true both in the Catholic Church and in other Churches and ecclesial communities.
    • Source: Pope John Paul II (2005). Memory and identity: conversations at the dawn of a millennium. Rizzoli. 
  • Could I forget that the event [Mehmet Ali Ağca’s assassination attempt] in Saint Peter's Square took place on the day and at the hour when the first appearance of the Mother of Christ to the poor little peasants has been remembered for over sixty years at Fatima in Portugal? For, in everything that happened to me on that very day, I felt that extraordinary motherly protection and care, which turned out to be stronger than the deadly bullet.
    • Source: Pope John Paul II (2005). Memory and identity: conversations at the dawn of a millennium. Rizzoli. 
  • I have looked for you. Now you have come to me. And I thank you.
  • God assigns as a duty to every man the dignity of every woman.
    • General audience of Wednesday, 24 November, which took place in the Paul VI Hall
      • Source: [4] (English)
  • When you wonder about the mystery of yourself, look to Christ who gives you the meaning of life. When you wonder what it means to be a mature person, look to Christ who is the fullness of humanity. And when you wonder about your role in the future of the world and of the United States, look to Christ.
How could man have such utter contempt for man? Because he had reached the point of contempt for God.
  • Young people of every continent, do not be afraid to be the saints of the new millennium! Be contemplative, love prayer; be coherent with your faith and generous in the service of your brothers and sisters, be active members of the Church and builders of peace.
    • Message of the Holy Father to the Youth of the World on the Occasion of the 15th World Youth Day, From the Vatican, 1999
  • I give thanks to God for the presence and help of cardinal Ratzinger, who is a trusted friend.
  • Rasizm jest grzechem, który stanowi poważną obrazę Boga.
    • Racism is a sin, which is a serious offense to God.
  • The disposition to listen to the Truth (that is, obedience) and the readiness to act in the Truth constitute the true dignity of the human person.
    • John Paul II. Teachings for an Unbelieving World . Ave Maria Press, Kindle Edition, March 2020
  • Jesus came into the world to reveal the whole dignity and nobility of the search for God, which is the deepest need of the human soul, and to meet the search halfway.


Quotes about Pope John Paul II[edit]

  • John Paul had sought rapprochement with Islam, which he appeared to view as a strategic ally in the struggle for "family values" and post-Englightenment thinking; during his pontificate, the Vatican had teamed up with Islamic governments at international human rights conferences to thwart European proposals for Third World birth control and other modernist evils.
    • Bruce Bawer, While Europe Slept: How Radical Islam Is Destroying the West from Within (1st ed. ed.). New York: Doubleday. p. p. 217 (of 288). ISBN 0-385-51472-7. .
  • Imagine a land in which ideal love is a reality and ideal sex; simultaneous climax between a loving couple, and in this land all couples are married. No barriers to perfect self-giving; no barriers to childbirth; no condoms, IUDs or pills. Abortion is illegal too. This land does not exist, but these ideals do in the work and thought of Karol Wojtyla, now Pope John Paul II. This is a film about what happens when those ideals clash with reality.
  • But trying to stop all abortions is just one way the Vatican is trying to impose its sexual values across the world. It's a campaign that draws passion and motivation from the Pope from Poland, John Paul II, and a vision of womanhood rooted in his personal history. In Kalwaria, close to the Pope's home town. They're setting off on a burial, the burial of the Virgin Mary. 74 years ago, this ceremony helped shape the Pope's vision of womanhood. The effigy, carried miles to its final resting place. Out of devotion to the ultimate mother. For John Paul, the virgin was to be the image of the ideal woman, a mother to all, and to him when, aged 8, he lost his own mother.
  • In 1960, now a bishop, he wrote an astonishingly frank book about love and marriage. It suggested that for a married man and woman: "climax must be reached in harmony" though he did add: "as far as possible." But although this was the age of the pill, Wojtyla also condemned contraception, pills, IUDs and condoms: "All immoral he said. All harmful for the health." Incredibly as it now seems, the Vatican almost endorsed the pill in the 60s, after all, there was no explicit ban on contraction in the Bible. But the then Pope, Paul VIth, received a gift from Krakow's Karol Wojtyla, a report attacking contraception and promoting natural family planning. The dismay of liberal Catholics, Pope Paul VIth using arguments Wojtyla had advocated, reaffirmed the ban on contraception. Karol Wojtyla, who'd been made Cardinal by a grateful Paul VIth, had stood against the tide of Catholic opinion and won. And once elected Pope, 25 years ago this week, he would use his extraordinary popularity to stand against the tide of world opinion, condemning contraction and the trend to legalise abortion.
  • Early in the Pope's reign he had a close ally in US President Ronald Reagan, both determined to end communism and support family values. Now President George W. Bush, a born again Christian, is reviving the alliance. He's pleased the Pope by stopping US aid for foreign organisations the US considers as promoting abortion, and by cutting off 34 million dollars of funding for the United Nations Population Fund and its family planning programmes. In Rome the ailing John Paul is still leading the fight, clearly frail but creating new saints, enforcing church doctrine and appointing new cardinals who will continue his work. But since the early days of his reign the world has been facing a new and terrible crisis.
  • When Pope John Paul II kissed the ground at the Warsaw airport he began the process by which communism in Poland – and ultimately elsewhere in Europe – would come to an end.
  • The present Pope is a man I hold in high regard. To begin with, our somewhat similar backgrounds give us an immediate common ground. The first time we met, he struck me as a very practical sort of person, very broad-minded and open. I have no doubt he is a great spiritual leader. Any man who can call out "Brother" to his would-be assassin, as Pope John Paul did, must be a highly evolved spiritual practicioner.
    • Tenzin Gyatso Freedom in Exile: The Autobiography of the Dalai Lama (1st paperback ed. ed.). San Francisco: HarperCollins Publishers. p. p. 202 (of 288). ISBN 0-06-098701-4. .
  • When the Pope's mother died, and one day his father took him here to Kalwaria and he pointed to the shire of our lady, to the picture of our lady of Kalwaria and he said Karol, from now on, she will be your mother, and he took it so seriously. He came here and he talked to her like he was talk to his earthly mum.
    • Father Melchior Guardian of Kalwaria Shrine as quoted in Steve Bradshaw, "SEX and the HOLY CITY", “Panorama”, BBC News. (12-10-03).
  • Shame on you, Mr. Bush, shame on you! And any time you got the Pope and the Dixie Chicks against you, your time is up.
  • By the time John Paul II was elected to the papacy in 1978, he had followed several vocations and avocations-student, laborer in a stone quarry, actor, playwright, philologist, seminarian, mystic, pastor and philosopher. These gave hi a particularly rich background for the work he was destined to do in the Church. Not only did he develop his formidable intellectual gifts through teaching in philosophy and moral theology, but he gained invaluable experience of ordinary life through work during the war as a laborer and in a different way as a parish priest and youth counselor. He acquired a deep respect for manual labor and the dignity of the ordinary man. So he wrote in a poem called ‘Participation:
    How splendid these men, no airs, no graces,
    I know you, look into your hearts,
    No pretense stands between us,
    Some hands are for toil, some for the cross.
  • The acting career of Karol Wojtyla began in high school between 1934 and 1938 and continued during the war years. At the age of 19 years he wrote his first play, David, which was quickly followed in the spring and summer of 1940 with Job and Jeremiah. As a result of the war, the theater was forced to go underground. Wartime limitations gave rise to the Rhapsodic Theater (1941), which was characterized by a minimum of scenery and emphasis on the spoken word. Succha theater of the word suited well the inclinations of both his collaborator, Mieczyslaw Kotlarczyk, and Wojtyla, tow of the five actors o the new Rhapsodic Theater. It was, above all, a theater of the inner self.
    Boleslaw Taborski, the translator of his plays, identifies some key characteristics of the dramatic works of the future Pope. ‘In his plays, as in his poems, he is concerned not so much with external events as with exploring man’s soul: it is there that the action unfolds.’ He finds a certain uniformity in themes and what he calls ‘moral import.’ Even as a nineteen-year-old, Wojtyla’s work was remarkably mature with an inner coherence. He presented a ‘vision of man’s place on earth and in the divine plan of creation.’ He also aimed at the ‘revaluation of words,’ which had become debased by various ideologies.
  • Under John Paul II, disciplinary actions against dissident theologians and priests increased dramatically, and the theological arguments advanced to support celibacy and to reject women’s ordination, artificial contraception, abortion, and NRTS became more entangled. This interpenetration of theological arguments meant that the Church found itself embroiled in an escalating series of crises from the 1960s onward, as increasingly its views on sexual morality no longer coincided with secular views.
  • As I stand here today before this incredible crowd, this faithful nation, we can still hear those voices that echo through history. Their message is as true today as ever. The people of Poland, the people of America, and the people of Europe still cry out "We want God." Together, with Pope John Paul II, the Poles reasserted their identity as a nation devoted to God. And with that powerful declaration of who you are, you came to understand what to do and how to live. You stood in solidarity against oppression, against a lawless secret police, against a cruel and wicked system that impoverished your cities and your souls. And you won. Poland prevailed. Poland will always prevail.

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