before in papal history has a figure been so loved and revered as Pope
John Paul II. No one has had a more profound impact on the contemporary
Church and modern history.
Born Karol Wojtyla on May 18, 1920, he was baptized in the Basilica of
the Virgin Mary in Wadowice, Poland. During the Nazi occupation of his
homeland he entered the underground seminary and was ordained a priest.
He earned his doctorate in theology in 1946, and in 1958 was appointed
an auxiliary bishop. Six years later he became Archbishop of Krakow,
and in 1967 was elevated to the rank of Cardinal.
Click here for more coins and medals
honoring Pope John Paul II!
In 1978 Karol Wojtyla was elected supreme pontiff of the Roman Catholic
Church and took the name John Paul II, becoming the first Polish pope
in history. In his inaugural ceremony in Rome, Jan Pawel II pronounced
his famous words, "Be not afraid." This sentiment would be reflected in
his life, teachings and activity.
In 1981 an assassination attempt weakened John Paul II's health but
strengthened his resolve to spread the gospel of love to people of all
faiths throughout the world, especially to youths and children. During
his papacy the pontiff visited over 125 countries on all the inhabited
continents. The unwavering leadership and commitment of Jan Pawel II
against the domination of his homeland by Soviet Marxism is credited
with helping to drive communism from Poland in 1989.
here for more 2 Zlote coins!
On April 2, 2005, beset by many infirmities and after a protracted
illness, the Holy Father passed into eternity. The life he led
represents one of the most influential and inspirational of the
Poland issued this official tribute coin program in 2005, shortly after
the death of John Paul II. Please use
the link below for a short biography of His Holiness.
A profile portrait
of His Holiness,
Pope John Paul II, facing right. To the right of the portrait is the
silhouette of St. Peter's Basilica in Rome with the statues of the
apostles on its roof. Beneath the dome of St.
Peter's is the Pope's name in Polish, JAN PAWEL II. Above the dome are
the dates of his life, 1920-2005.