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George Weigel lauds ‘thoroughly lovable’ John Paul II 101 years after saint’s birth

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Pope John Paul II in 1996. / Vatican Media

CNA Staff, May 18, 2021 / 14:00 pm (CNA).

George Weigel lauded John Paul II as “a man of God, a brilliant analyst of the human condition, and a thoroughly lovable human being” on the 101st anniversary of the saint’s birth.

Marking the May 18 anniversary, the papal biographer said that the pope’s teaching remained relevant more than a century after his birth in Wadowice, Poland.

“John Paul II understood that the Great Issue for the future of humanity in the 21st century and beyond was the concept of the human person that would shape culture and society,” said the author of “Witness to Hope,” a monumental biography of the Polish pope issued in 1999.

“Are we merely bundles of morally equivalent desires, and is freedom merely the satisfaction of those desires? Or are we created for a nobler exercise of freedom: the freedom to seek the truths built into the world and into us and to live our lives according to those truths?”

John Paul II, born Karol Wojtyła on May 18, 1920, survived the Nazi occupation of Poland and helped to lead the Church’s resistance to the oppressive communist regime that followed.

Elected pope in 1978, he led the Church for 26 years until his death in 2005. The first non-Italian pope in 455 years, he made more foreign trips than all previous popes combined and issued 14 encyclicals.

“John Paul II’s teaching reflected the conviction, which he helped write into the Second Vatican Council’s Pastoral Constitution on the Church in the Modern World, that, in Jesus Christ, we meet the deepest truths about God and ourselves,” said Weigel, Distinguished Senior Fellow at the Ethics and Public Policy Center in Washington, D.C.

“That is the central message that the Church must take to the world, if it is to be the Church of the New Evangelization that John Paul II proclaimed.”

He made the comments in response to questions from the Office for Foreign Communication of the Polish Bishops’ Conference.

Meanwhile, the St. John Paul II Institute of Culture, within the Faculty of Philosophy at the Angelicum in Rome, is launching a new year-long program for postgraduate students.

The institute was founded at the Angelicum, formally known as the Pontifical University of St. Thomas Aquinas, on the 100th anniversary of the saint’s birth in 2020. The future pope studied at the university after the Second World War.

Admissions to the new program begin on John Paul II’s birth anniversary. Teachers will include Rémi Brague, Francis Russell Hittinger, Rowan Williams, and George Weigel.

Speaking to Polish media, Weigel said: “I am eager to be a part of this important initiative, which I hope will help students ‘see’ the world through John Paul II’s ideas and papal teaching, rather than simply looking at him as an exemplary human being.”

“He was that, of course, but he also had an acute analysis of the crisis of civilization today, and that analysis deserves to be carefully studied.”


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  • Daughter of the Church

    “thoroughly depictable” is the right answer to that blaring title from the “historian” revisionist to facts that a papal biographer has either omitted or falsely embellished. Karol Wojtyła Katz (Katz from his Jewess grand-mother)had been a theater actor before the war with a Jewess actress by his side. Then came the war. The “resistant” was in fact a poison gas salesman during the war. Fearing retaliations after the war he prudently entered the seminary to embrace a career in the sacerdoce. Does the “historian” George Weigel ignore that the soviets had agents inside the Catholic clergy?
    After having been made archbishop of Krakow (a post made for him) he became Antipope John-Paul II. An antipope who universalized the destruction of the Church began by Antipope Paul VI, a proven homosexual and demonstrated Luciferian. Antipope JP2 has introduced many heresies, as well as has revived many others. A total of heresies summing-up to about 140.
    Antipope JP2′s deceitful public record needs not be enunciated, and it would be futile to do so anyway, since the world has become so blinded by the empty promises began by Vatican II. Is that a part of God’s chastisement? probably it is, and how terrible must be God’s anger, particularly in the aftermaths of the Assisi Conferences. Does the papal biographer knows of the earthquake damaging the Basilica (at Assisi)? Does the biographer, -expectantly knowing the scriptures’- understand the significance of the earthquake and the tearing of the Temple’s veil at the time of the death of Jesus Christ? Once again, it is futile to reason Antipope “Saint” John-Paul’s groupies.
    May be the biographer may have an explanation as to why the Russian Red Army celebrated a jubile in the honor of Karol Wojtyła.

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