Prayer for John Paul II
“God our Heavenly Father,
you called John Paul II to be chief shepherd
of your people as Pope of the Holy Catholic Church.
He guided us with the most loving care
while he was with us in this world.
He is now with You in paradise.
By Your divine will,
he is an intercessor for us
who journey through life
in Your pilgrim Church.
May the Blessed Mother of God,
Mary Most Holy,
whom John Paul was so devoted to,
be our hope and our strength
as she was for him.
Eternal Father, John Paul II taught us
the deep value of the human person
as he traveled throughout the world
spreading Your message
of peace and eternal salvation.
He showed us the value of the Cross
by the way he lived.
John Paul II defended life in all stages,
from the womb to the elderly
and preached the sanctity of life.
May we come to know these truths
and live them as he did
with undying faith, hope and love.
We make our prayer
through Jesus Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns with You
and the Holy Spirit,
one God forever and ever.
Saint John Paul II
Pope John Paul II was born Karol Joseph Wojtyla in Poland in 1920. His mother died when he was a young boy so he was raised by his father and his older brother. He loved sports as a youngster and was an excellent student at school. He also loved the theater and literature and wanted to be a professional actor.
During WWII and the Nazi occupation of Poland, he worked as a stonecutter while belonging to an illegal Catholic organization and was still acting in the theater secretly. He then decided on a vocation in the priesthood in 1942 and was ordained in 1946. After only twelve years of being a priest he was named auxiliary Bishop of Krakow and a full bishop four years later. He was a born leader … an attribute which was noticed by Pope Paul VI who elevated him to Cardinal in 1967. In 1978 at the age of 58, he was elected to the Papacy.
He was the first Polish Pope and also the first non-Italian Pope since 1522. John Paul II changed the way the Papacy was looked upon by the outside world. He traveled the world to bring the Church’s message to his flock by way of example as did the apostles of Christ. In 1981, he was shot by a Muslim assassin in St. Peters Square on the feast of our Lady of Fatima. He miraculously survived the wounds and attributes his survival to Our Lady’s intervention. Years later, in an extraordinary act of forgiveness and love, John Paul II met with his shooter and wholly forgave him.
The impact of John Paul II’s pontificate was so profound that many have dubbed him “John Paul the great” — a title that only time can test. He was a prolific writer who wrote many books on spirituality and countless encyclicals to move the Church toward the true teachings of Christ. John Paul II passed away in 2005 but will be forever remembered as one of the most dynamic and great Popes ever to succeed St. Peter.
On May 1 2011, John Paul II was made Blessed by Pope Benedict XVI. The ceremony took place on Divine Mercy Sunday in honor of John Paul’s work to make the devotion of Divine Mercy an official Church feast day.
On April 27th, 2014, he was canonized by Pope Francis I along with Pope John XXIII.
Feast Day: October 22nd
Patron Saint of: Young Catholics, World Youth Day, Families Labor, Unborn Children
Why is Pope John II a saint?
The Vatican announced that Pope John Paul II would officially be declared a Saint after it was proven he had performed two miracles — both of them after his death.
What is Pope John Paul II known for?
Pope John Paul II is known around the world for his peace efforts and extensive writings on everything from poverty, communism, Blessed Mother Mary, the Eucharist, dignity and vocation of women, contraception, reproductive issues, family life and many other important issues (*see Theology of the Body). He is remembered for canonizing the great Saint, Sister Faustina Kowalska (saint of Divine Mercy) and his dear friendship with Mother Teresa. Pope John Paul II’s pontificate was (and remains) so influential around the world, he has been dubbed “John Paul the great.”