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2010-03-24T17:32:39+01:00
John Paul II (Latin: Ioannes Paulus II), responsible. Karol Jozef Wojtyla (born May 18, 1920 in Wadowice, died. April 2, 2005 in the Vatican) - Polish Roman Catholic clergyman, Archbishop of Krakow, Cardinal, Pope (16 October 1978 - April 2, 2005), a servant of God Catholic Church, Knight of the Order of White Eagle .

The poet and linguist, as well as actor, playwright and educator. The philosopher of history, phenomenologist, mystic and a representative of Christian personalism.
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2010-03-24T17:34:31+01:00
Karol Joseph Wojtyła was born in the Polish town of Wadowice and was the youngest of three children of Karol Wojtyła, an ethnic Pole, and Emilia Kaczorowska, who was of Lithuanian ancestry.His mother died on 13 April 1929, when he was eight years old. Karol's elder sister, Olga, had died in infancy before his birth, thus, Karol grew close to his brother Edmund, who was 14 years his senior, and whom he nicknamed ‘Mundek’. However, Edmund's work as a physician led to his contraction and death of scarlet fever, profoundly affecting Karol.
As a youth, Wojtyła was an athlete and often played football as a goalkeeper; he was also a supporter of Polish club Cracovia Kraków. His formative years were influenced by numerous contacts with the vibrant and prospering Jewish community of Wadowice. School football games were often organised between teams of Jews and Catholics, and Wojtyła would voluntarily offer himself as a substitute goalkeeper on the Jewish side if they were short of players.
In the summer of 1938, Karol Wojtyła and his father left Wadowice and moved to Kraków, where he enrolled at the Jagiellonian University. While studying such topics as philology and various languages at the University, he worked as a volunteer librarian and was forced to do compulsory military training in the Academic Legion, but he refused to hold or fire a weapon. He also performed with various theatrical groups and worked as a playwright. During this time, his talent for language blossomed and he learned as many as 12 foreign languages, nine of which he later used extensively as Pope.
In 1939, Nazi German occupation forces closed the Jagiellonian University after the invasion of Poland. All able-bodied males were required to work, and, from 1940 to 1944, Wojtyła variously worked as a messenger for a restaurant, a manual labourer in a limestone quarry and for the Solvay chemical factory to avoid being deported to Germany. His father, a non-commissioned army officer, died of a heart attack in 1941, leaving Karol the sole surviving member of his immediate family.[27][28][35] “I was not at my mother's death, I was not at my brother's death, I was not at my father's death,” he said, reflecting on these times of his life, nearly forty years later, “At twenty, I had already lost all the people I loved.”
Karol Wojtyła at 12 years old
He later stated that he began thinking seriously about the priesthood after his father's death, and that his vocation gradually became ‘an inner fact of unquestionable and absolute clarity.’ In October 1942, increasingly aware of his calling to the priesthood, he knocked on the door of the Archbishop's Palace in Kraków, and declared that he wanted to study for the priesthood. Soon after, he began courses in the clandestine underground seminary run by the Archbishop of Kraków, Adam Stefan Cardinal Sapieha.

On 29 February 1944, Wojtyła was knocked down by a German truck. Unexpectedly, the German Wehrmacht officers tended to him and sent him to a hospital. He spent two weeks there recovering from a severe concussion and a shoulder injury. This accident and his survival seemed to Wojtyła a confirmation of his priestly vocation. On 6 August 1944, ‘Black Sunday’, the Gestapo rounded up young men in Kraków to avoid an uprising similar[37] to the previous uprising in Warsaw. Wojtyła escaped by hiding in the basement of his uncle's home at 10 Tyniets Street, while German troops searched upstairs. More than eight thousand men and boys were taken into custody that day, but Karol escaped to the Archbishop's Palace, where he remained in hiding until after the Germans left.
On the night of 17 January 1945, the Germans fled the city, and the students reclaimed the ruined seminary. Wojtyła and another seminarian volunteered for the unenviable task of clearing away piles of frozen excrement from the lavatories.[41] That month, Wojtyła personally aided a 14-year-old Jewish refugee girl named Edith Zierer who had run away from a Nazi labour camp in Częstochowa. After her collapse on a railway platform, Wojtyła carried her to a train and accompanied her safely to Kraków. Zierer credits Wojtyła with saving her life that day. B'nai B'rith and other authorities have said that Wojtyla helped protect many other Polish Jews from the Nazis.
Priesthood
On completion of his studies at the seminary in Kraków, Karol Wojtyła was ordained as a priest on All Saints' Day, 1 November 1946,[28] by the Archbishop of Kraków, Cardinal Sapieha.[26][46][47] He was then sent to study theology in Rome, at the Pontifical International Athenaeum Angelicum, where he earned a licentiate and later a doctorate in sacred theology. This doctorate, the first of two, was based on the Latin dissertation The Doctrine of Faith According to Saint John of the Cross.
He returned to Poland in the summer of 1948 with his first pastoral assignment in the village of Niegowić, fifteen miles from Kraków. Arriving at Niegowić during harvest time, his first action was to kneel down and kiss the ground. This gesture, adapted from French saint Jean Marie Baptiste Vianney,would become one of his ‘trademarks’ during his Papacy.
Pontifical International Athenaeum Angelicum in Rome.
In March 1949, he was transferred to the parish of Saint Florian in Kraków. He taught ethics at the Jagiellonian University there and subsequently at the Catholic University of Lublin. While teaching, Wojtyła gathered a group of about 20 young people, who began to call themselves Rodzinka, the "little family". They met for prayer, philosophical discussion, and helping the blind and sick. The group eventually grew to approximately 200 participants, and their activities expanded to include annual skiing and kayaking trips.
In 1954 he earned a second doctorate, in philosophy,evaluating the feasibility of a Catholic ethic based on the ethical system of phenomenologist Max Scheler. However, the Communist authorities' intervention prevented his receiving the degree until 1957.

During this period, Wojtyła wrote a series of articles in Kraków's Catholic newspaper Tygodnik Powszechny ("Universal Weekly") dealing with contemporary church issues.He also focused on creating original literary work during his first dozen years as a priest. War, life under communism, and his pastoral responsibilities all fed his poetry and plays. However, he published his work under two pseudonyms – Andrzej Jawień and Stanisław Andrzej Gruda – to distinguish his literary from his religious writings (which were published under his own name) and also so that his literary works would be considered on their own merits. In 1960, Wojtyła published the influential theological book Love and Responsibility, a defence of the traditional Church teachings on marriage from a new philosophical standpoint.