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  • Wadowice, Poland
    Tuesday May 18, 1920

    Birth

    Wadowice, Poland
    Tuesday May 18, 1920

    Karol Józef Wojtyła was born in the Polish town of Wadowice. He was the youngest of three children born to Karol Wojtyła (1879–1941), an ethnic Pole, and Emilia Kaczorowska (1884–1929), whose mother's maiden surname was Scholz.




  • Karkow, Poland
    1938

    Jagiellonian University

    Karkow, Poland
    1938

    In mid-1938, 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, he worked as a volunteer librarian and was required to participate in compulsory military training in the Academic Legion, but he refused to fire a weapon.




  • Karkow, Poland
    1938

    Germans Occupied Poland

    Karkow, Poland
    1938

    In 1939, Nazi German occupation forces closed the university after invading Poland.




  • Karkow, Poland
    1942

    Study for the priesthood

    Karkow, Poland
    1942

    In October 1942, while the war continued, he knocked on the door of the Bishop's Palace in Kraków and asked 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.




  • Karkow, Poland
    Tuesday Feb 29, 1944

    Hit a German Trunk

    Karkow, Poland
    Tuesday Feb 29, 1944

    On 29 February 1944, Wojtyła was hit by a German truck. German Wehrmacht officers tended to him and sent him to a hospital. He spent two weeks there recovering from a severe concussionand a shoulder injury.




  • Karkow, Poland
    Sunday Aug 06, 1944

    Black Sunday

    Karkow, Poland
    Sunday Aug 06, 1944

    On 6 August 1944, a day known as "Black Sunday", the Gestapo rounded up young men in Kraków to curtail the uprising there, similar to the recent uprising in Warsaw. Wojtyła escaped by hiding in the basement of his uncle's house at 10 Tyniecka Street, while the German troops searched above. More than eight thousand men and boys were taken that day, while Wojtyła escaped to the Archbishop's Palace, where he remained until after the Germans had left.




  • Karkow, Poland
    Wednesday Jan 17, 1945

    Germans feld the City

    Karkow, Poland
    Wednesday Jan 17, 1945

    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 task of clearing away piles of frozen excrement from the toilets. Wojtyła also helped a 14-year-old Jewish refugee girl named Edith Zierer, who had escaped from a Nazi labour camp in Częstochowa.


  • Karkow, Poland
    Friday Nov 01, 1946

    A Priest

    Karkow, Poland
    Friday Nov 01, 1946

    After finishing his studies at the seminary in Kraków, Wojtyła was ordained as a priest on All Saints' Day, 1 November 1946, by the Archbishop of Kraków, Cardinal Sapieha.


  • Rome, Italy
    Tuesday Nov 26, 1946

    Rome's Pontifical International Athenaeum Angelicum

    Rome, Italy
    Tuesday Nov 26, 1946

    Sapieha sent Wojtyła to Rome's Pontifical International Athenaeum Angelicum, the future Pontifical University of Saint Thomas Aquinas, to study under the French Dominican Fr. Reginald Garrigou-Lagrange beginning on 26 November 1946.


  • Rome, Italy
    Saturday Jun 19, 1948

    Successfully defended his doctoral thesis

    Rome, Italy
    Saturday Jun 19, 1948

    He resided in the Belgian Pontifical College during this time, under presidency of Mgr Maximilien de Furstenberg. Wojtyła earned a licence in July 1947, passed his doctoral exam on 14 June 1948, and successfully defended his doctoral thesis titled Doctrina de fide apud S. Ioannem a Cruce (The Doctrine of Faith in St. John of the Cross) in philosophy on 19 June 1948.


  • Karkow, Poland
    1949

    Transferred to the parish of Saint Florian

    Karkow, Poland
    1949

    In March 1949, Wojtyła was transferred to the parish of Saint Florian in Kraków. He taught ethics at Jagiellonian University and subsequently at the Catholic University of Lublin.


  • Lakes region of northern Poland, Poland
    Friday Jul 04, 1958

    Youngest bishop in Poland

    Lakes region of northern Poland, Poland
    Friday Jul 04, 1958

    On 4 July 1958, while Wojtyła was on a kayaking holiday in the lakes region of northern Poland, Pope Pius XII appointed him as the Auxiliary Bishop of Kraków. He was then summoned to Warsaw to meet the Primate of Poland, Bishop of Sophene and Vågå, auxiliary of the Catholic Archdiocese of Wrocław, and future Cardinal and Archbishop of Wrocław) and then-Auxiliary Bishop Franciszek Jop of the Catholic Diocese of Sandomierz (Titular Bishop of Daulia; later Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Wrocław and then Bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Opole). At the age of 38, Wojtyła became the youngest bishop in Poland.


  • Karkow, Poland
    Monday Jan 13, 1964

    Archbishop of Kraków

    Karkow, Poland
    Monday Jan 13, 1964

    On 13 January 1964, Pope Paul VI appointed him Archbishop of Kraków.


  • Karkow, Poland
    Monday Jun 26, 1967

    Promotion to the Sacred College of Cardinals

    Karkow, Poland
    Monday Jun 26, 1967

    On 26 June 1967, Paul VI announced Archbishop Karol Wojtyła's promotion to the Sacred College of Cardinals.


  • Vatican City, Italy
    Thursday Sep 28, 1978

    The death of Pope John Paul I

    Vatican City, Italy
    Thursday Sep 28, 1978

    The papal conclave of October 1978 was triggered by the death of Pope John Paul I on 28 September just 33 days after his election on 26 August.


  • Vatican City, Italy
    Sunday Oct 22, 1978

    A Pope

    Vatican City, Italy
    Sunday Oct 22, 1978

    John Paul II dispensed with the traditional Papal coronation and instead received ecclesiastical investiture with a simplified Papal inauguration on 22 October 1978. During his inauguration, when the cardinals were to kneel before him to take their vows and kiss his ring, he stood up as the Polish prelate Stefan Cardinal Wyszyński knelt down, stopped him from kissing the ring, and simply hugged him.


  • Vatican City, Italy
    Wednesday May 13, 1981

    Unsuccessful Assassination

    Vatican City, Italy
    Wednesday May 13, 1981

    As he entered St. Peter's Square to address an audience on 13 May 1981, Pope John Paul II was shot and critically wounded by Mehmet Ali Ağca, an expert Turkish gunman who was a member of the militant fascist group Grey Wolves.


  • Vatican City, Italy
    Saturday Apr 02, 2005
    03:30:00 PM

    Death

    Vatican City, Italy
    Saturday Apr 02, 2005

    On Saturday, 2 April 2005, at approximately 15:30 CEST, John Paul II spoke his final words in Polish, "Pozwólcie mi odejść do domu Ojca" ("Allow me to depart to the house of the Father"), to his aides, and fell into a coma about four hours later.


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