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Pope John Paul II

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  1. Catholic Pope John Paul II Biography (CNN)
      Provides a pictorial biography and other information on the Pope, discusses the Pope's impact, and details how a Pope is selected. 3-00

  2. Catholic Sacraments (Eternal Word Television Network - Pope John II)
      "The overall theme for Pope John Paul II's pastoral visit to England and Wales was the seven Sacraments." "We give below the main points of the Holy Father's homilies on all these occasions." 11-02

  3. Catholic Saints - Pope Canonizes Five Saints (CBS News)
      "A massive crowd in the shape of a cross gathered around Pope John Paul II on Sunday as he proclaimed five new saints and urged Spaniards to emulate them."

      "One of the canonized priests, Pedro Poveda, was killed in 1936 during the opening days of the Spanish Civil War."

      The other four new saints are Angela de la Cruz, who founded the Sisters of the Company of the Cross; Genoveva Torres, who founded the Sisters of the Sacred Heart and of the Holy Angels; Maravillas de Jesus, who founded convents for the Order of Barefoot Carmelites, and Jose Maria Rubio, a Jesuit priest."

      "Sunday's service raised to 469 the number of saints John Paul has proclaimed in his nearly 25-year papacy. He has proclaimed more saints than any other pontiff." 5-03

  4. Election of a Pope (MSNBC News)
      "The Roman Catholic Church was completing its official nine-day mourning period for Pope John Paul II on Saturday while its cardinals made final preparations to select his successor." 4-05

  5. John Paul II (PBS Frontline)
      "Yes, he's right to question our 'Promethean attitude,' the fact that we treat 'everything as negotiable.' We had not meant to fall so far away from our true ideals."

      In the end, though, he makes many of us uneasy. We admire his seriousness, but we cannot accept his sense of absolute truth. He is entitled to oppose abortion; others are entitled to accept it. Relativism brings dissatisfaction, dissent, profound unease, but we can't just turn away from individual rights. John Paul II feels we can. As Professor Judt observed, 'He regards the Enlightenment, what we think of as the moment of the coming of modern thought, the belief in the rights of man, the beliefs in equality, the belief in democracy as the product of another mistake, the mistake that human kind made in abandoning faith and God two, three hundred years ago in the West. And his task is not to put that mistake to rights. He simply behaves as though it hadn't happened...That is his relation to modernity.' "

      "The Pope insists that God exists and yearns for human contact and without this, human beings cannot themselves live. He believes man, in fact, cannot be good without God. For this Pope, the totalitarianisms that have dominated the 20th century have prevailed for one reason only--mankind has lost its connection to the transcendent. So the God question, the faith question, is all consuming for him. Will the human race, especially those who have power and influence, be able once again to consider its link to the transcendent? To him the very survival of mankind depends on how that question is faced." 4-05

  6. John Paul II - The Authoritarian Pope (
      "John Paul II took an institution just beginning to throw off the chains of centuries of insularity and autocracy and to be plain speaking, reshaped it into what can only be described as a totalitarian institution."

      "In 1958 Pope John XXIII assumed the papacy. Within months he called for an 'aggiornamiento,' a 'bringing up to date' of the church. Church services began to be conducted in native languages. Priests and nuns and laity were given more participation and authority."

      "Pope John XXIII died shortly after Vatican II convened. But the reforms he nurtured took root and flowered under his successor. Journalist Gwynne Dyer recently recalled his impressions after visiting Catholic churches around the world in 1978 in preparation for a televised documentary. 'In southern Africa, Catholics were playing a leading role in resistance to apartheid. In Latin America, the phenomenon of 'liberation theology' was reconnecting the church with the impoverished peasant millions whom it had long ignored. In Europe and North America, the old hierarchies were all under challenge, but especially the hierarchy of gender. Justice and equality were the themes and the energy was astonishing."

      " 'Twenty-five years later,' Dyer sadly observes, 'it is all gone.' "

      "John Paul II attended the Vatican Council meetings in the 1960s and opposed the changes. Upon taking office he undertook to reverse them. To achieve this goal he dramatically centralized and exercised powers."

      "In the 1980s French theologican Marie-Dominique Chenu put it bluntly. John Paul harkens back to the 'prototype of the church as an absolute monarchy.' " 4-05

  7. Pope John Paul II (BBC News)
      "Marco Politi, one of Italy's best-known Vatican watchers, believes John Paul II will be remembered not only as a great pope, but also as a leading figure of the 20th Century."

      "Yet when he was elected in 1978, few outside Poland had heard of Karol Wojtyla, then the archbishop of Krakow."

      "The cardinals who chose him knew they could count on him to uphold traditional beliefs at a time when many Catholics were questioning the teachings of the Church." 10-03

  8. Pope John Paul II (BBC News)
      "The first Polish pontiff - and at 58, the youngest Pope of the 20th Century - he had risen swiftly through the ranks of Catholic clergy to become Archbishop of Krakow." 2-05

  9. Pope John Paul II (BBC News)
      Provides a brief biography of the Pope. 10-03

  10. Pope John Paul II (
      Provides a pictorial biography and other information on the Pope, discusses the Pope's impact, and details how a Pope is selected.

      "He is the most widely traveled pope in history, having visited over 116 countries on missions of goodwill, promoting human rights, and condemning the decline of spiritual values brought about by the rising materialism of the twentieth century." 2-05

  11. Pope John Paul II (CNN News)
      "Voicing a strong moral vision, Pope John Paul II forged a legacy as one of the Catholic Church's most influential and controversial leaders. The 264th pontiff traveled more and beatified more people than any pope in history, and supporters and critics alike agree on the immense significance of his 26-year papacy" 4-05

  12. Pope John Paul II (PBS)
      Provides a detailed biography of the Pope, including his historical roots in Poland. The Pope was formerly known as Karol Wojtyla. 3-00

  13. Pope John Paul II - Comprehensive Biographical Resources (The Vatican)
      Provides information on his works, letters, travels, and more." 4-05

  14. Pope John Paul II - Short Biography (The Vatican)
      "Karol Jozef Wojtya, known as John Paul II since his October 1978 election to the papacy, was born in Wadowice, a small city 50 kilometres from Cracow, on May 18, 1920." 4-05

  15. Pope John Paul II Funeral (Bloomberg News)
      "It was young people like Bartek who made up much of the crowd today. They came to honor the only pope they had ever known, a man who managed to connect to young people throughout his papacy, even in the final years when Parkinson's disease and other ailments sapped his strength and left him unable to walk and barely able to speak." 4-05

  16. Pope John Paul II's Funeral (MSNBC News)
      "The public viewing of the body of Pope John Paul drew to an end on Thursday as the Vatican shut the doors of St. Peter's Basilica, paving the way for the funeral of the pontiff, which promises to be a gathering of influential political and religious leaders from around the world." 4-05

  17. Pope John Paul II's Legacy (MSNBC News)
      "Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, dean of the College of Cardinals, a close confidant of John Paul and a possible successor, presided at the Mass and referred to him as our 'late beloved pope' in a homily that traced the pontiff’s life from his days as a factory worker in Nazi-occupied Poland to his final days as the head of the world’s 1 billion Catholics."

      " 'Today we bury his remains in the earth as a seed of immortality — our hearts are full of sadness, yet at the same time of joyful hope and profound gratitude,' Ratzinger said in heavily accented Italian." 4-05

  18. Pope John Paul II's Simple Wooden Casket (Guardian Unlimited)
      "But the most stunning design stroke of all was the Pope's. In his will and testament he requested a simple wooden coffin, and there it was, simple indeed, made of solid cypress wood, unornamented, plainly varnished, with all its grain and knots and joinery visible, engraved with the cross and the letter 'M,' standing for Mary, to whom the Pope had a special devotion."

      "There it was, centre stage, in front of the altar, throughout the mass, a perfect symbol of this Pope's character - his strength, his endurance, his total lack of affectation and stubborn conviction of his own rightness." 4-05

  19. Pope Supports International Peace-Keeping Force (BBC)
      "Pope John Paul ll has lent his support to the creation of an international peacekeeping force to try to bring an end to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict." 8-02

  20. Pope to Add Five New Mysteries to Rosary ( - Thavis)
      "While praising those who regularly pray the rosary in its traditional form, the pope also encouraged the addition of five 'mysteries of light' -- moments from Jesus' public ministry -- to further underline the rosary's focus on Christ."

      "Pope John Paul said the rosary has 'a peaceful effect on those who pray it,' it leads them to see the face of Christ in others, to recognize other's grief and suffering and to yearn to make the world 'more beautiful, more just, more closely conformed to God's plan.' " 11-02

  21. Timetable for Conclave Meetings (Guardian Unlimited)
      "The remaining days of the conclave are expected to follow Tuesday's schedule. A Vatican spokesman said smoke signals from burned ballot papers were likely to be seen at around noon or 7pm each day unless a new pontiff was elected in today's first ballot." 4-05


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