St. John Paul II

JohnPaul-II-St. John Paul II.  Born Karol Józef Wojtya in Wadowice Poland, 18 May 1920.  Ordained a priest in 1946; a bishop in 1958, and elevated to the papacy in 1978.  Died in the Vatican, 2 April 2005 at the age of 84.

As Pope, he made such a mark that he is often referred to as John Paul the Great.  Among his great achievements are the following:  He …

added five Luminous Mysteries to the Holy Rosary

gave us the Catechism of the Catholic Church

canonized 483 saints

visited 129 countries

established a special rapport with youth

helped restore moral and doctrinal stability and clear up the confusion that followed the Second Vatican Council

wrote 14 encyclicals, including Laborem Exercens which stood firmly against exploitation of workers

worked with President Ronald Reagan to bring about the downfall of the Soviet Empire