Take Over! an
anointed, inspirational account of how the Blessed Mother -- as Undoer
of Knots -- should be handed our daily trials large and small as we
watch her work wonders with them -- turning obstacles into miracles! This
booklet is by the same group that brings us 'Mary Undoer of Knots' and
though small brims with powerful examples of how the Virgin Mary can enter
any situation -- can help you against any 'Goliath' -- and make things better than ever.
huge geopolitically; a towering philosopher-theologian; a prodigious writer (fourteen encyclicals, including The Splendour of the Truth). Even before he was pontiff, John Paul II was instrumental in formulating the watershed 1967 encyclical Humanae Vitae [see encyclopedia and official Vatican bio].
Born in Wadowice in 1920 (as a church across the street dedicated to the Blessed Mother was ringing its bells), Karol Wojtyla, the youngest pope in 125 years and the first non-Italian in 455 years when he was elected pope in August of 1978.
He reigned as Pope of the Catholic Church and Sovereign of The Holy See from October 16, 1978, until his death on April 2, 2005, at 84 years and 319 days of age," notes the encyclopedia (helping us be succinct about it). As noted, he was one of the most-traveled world leaders in history, visiting 129 countries during his pontificate.
According to Szulc (a former reporter for The New York Times who wrote an excellent book about the Pope) legend has it that Pio, upon hearing the future Pope's confession, knelt at his feet, predicting that the Polish cleric would be called to the Throne of Peter and would also be the target of an assassination attempt.
In 1962 the future Pope supposedly wrote to Pio asking him to pray for a mother who had cancer -- and then wrote again a week later to say the woman had suddenly recovered.
In 1974 the Pope returned to the town of Padre Pio and spent three days in prayer there.
Since then there have been many rumors of John Paul's own mystical abilities. He has the aura of a visionary -- a brightness around him that is almost incandescent -- and he made a point of visiting all the major supernatural shrines: Guadalupe, Lourdes, Fatima. He also visited Zaravanystya in Ukraine (where the Virgin has appeared through historical times) and was deeply devoted to Czestochowa (a shrine in Poland where he once declared an oath on "Luminous Mountain").
His was the second-longest documented pontificate, lasting 26 years and 168 days. Only Pius IX who served thirty-one years (1846–1878), reigned longer. (The modern Catholic Church says that St. Peter the Apostle served as Pope for more than thirty years, although early historians such as Eusebius name the immediate successor of Peter and Paul as Rome's first bishop, notes Wikipedia.)
John Paul II had charisma. He had love. Young people were drawn to him. He instituted Youth Day. So were the elderly. Everyone was. "He brought a new vitality to the Vatican, and quickly became the most accessible modern pope, sitting down for meals with factory workers, skiing, and wading into crowds to embrace the faithful," notes the bio. "His Polish roots nourished a doctrinal conservatism -- opposition to contraception, euthanasia, abortion and women priests -- that rankled liberal Catholics in the United States and Western Europe.
"But his common touch also made him a crowd-pleasing, globe-trotting superstar whose 26-year papacy carried the Catholic Church into Christianity's third millennium and emboldened eastern Europeans to bring down the communist system.
"He survived an assassination attempt in St. Peter's Square in 1981 -- and promptly forgave the Turk who had shot him.
"After suffering for years from the effects of Parkinson's, he died in his Vatican apartment on April 2, 2005, at the age of 84."
Tens of thousands of people assembled and held vigil in St. Peter's Square and the surrounding streets for two days before he passed. On hearing of this, the dying Pope reportedly stated: "I have searched for you, and now you have come to me, and I thank you."
On Saturday 2 April 2005, at about 15:30 Central European Summer time, John Paul II spoke his final words, "pozwólcie mi odejść do domu Ojca" ("Let me depart to the house of the Father"), to his aides, and fell into a coma four hours later.
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