Science can purify religion from error and superstition. Religion can purify science from idolatry and false absolutes. Pope John Paul II embodies these principals. Born as Karol Józef Wojty?a on May 18, 1920, in Wadowice, Poland to Karol Wojty?a and Emilia Kaczorowska, Pope John Paul II came from an middle class family, but by the time he was twenty, his parents and siblings had died. In time, he went to the Jagiellonian University, and after various odd jobs, he decided to become a priest. A man of science as well as religion, John Paul II is well-regarded by many people because he respected science and was a great preacher. With this, Pope John Paul II created quite a legacy that we can all look up to. He helped bring attention to his home country of Poland since he wasn’t an Italian, like many popes before him. A man of the people who resisted communists and Nazis, his canonization was fitting. He was a man and servant of God, he exhibited a life of heroic virtue, and had many verified miracles.Pope John Paul II lived during World War II and under the reign of the Nazis. A man of subtle features and a high forehead, His look was unassuming. At one point in his life, Pope John Paul II was wanted by the Nazis secret service, the Gestapo. To avoid capture, he hid in his mother’s basement. I am sure these experiences transformed him and helped him see the world differently, leading his Christian life where he became a cardinal and then the pope. As a leader, Pope John Paul II played the mentor to many Polish Catholics. Society treated Pope John Paul II kindly, and he was well respected. Saint Pope John Paul is different from many saints in many ways; like the way he traveled 775,000 miles in his lifetime,  helping people. Furthermore, after his assassination attempt in 1981 where he was shot four times, he eventually visited his would-be assassin, forgave him, and asked for his pardon. His vocation as a pope was to help people, even his own, potential murderer.  However, it was really Pope John Paul’s II experience in World War II that changed him from ordinary to extraordinary. He hid from the Nazis while they rounded up people. In addition, he helped a twelve year old girl escape from the a concentration camp and helped hide a Jewish boy from the Nazis. Pope John Paul II’s college education assisted with him with his mature and smart decisions. Pope John Paul II paradigm was that he believed bringing together other religions would be a force for good in the world. According to many sources, Pope John Paul had a very outgoing personality and did other things beside preaching, such as being an author in his own right. In fact, he wrote several, including the Threshold of Hope, Gift and Mystery, Roman Triptych and Get up, Let Us Be On Our Way. To become a saint, there must be proof of two, verified miracles. Saint Pope John Paul II helped heal Sister Simon-Pierre’s legs and cured another woman’s brain aneurysm by leading a night prayer for her. He had an extraordinary ability to communicate with people and learned twelve languages. John Paul II also dealt with the Nazis and later the Communists, whom he did not let take control of the Roman Catholic Church, which would have given them power. Pope John Paul II’s biggest achievement was that he helped end communism in Poland and Eastern Europe. In the end, Saint John Paul II left a legacy to be remembered as well as one to be revered.Pope John Paul II died of septic shock in the Vatican Palace at age 84 on April 2, 2005.  At the end, he refused medical care because he wanted to die in the Vatican. So many people cared about him that four million people gathered around the Vatican in mourning. It is considered the largest Christian pilgrimage in history. He was so popular that the normal, five- year canonization period was shortened to two. His outreach to the Jewish community caused the Anti-Defamation League to proclaim that he had done more than anybody in 2,000 years to help Christian-Jewish relations.  Pope John Paul II was one of the most well-respected and beloved popes ever to live.   Saint John Paul II life choices teaches us that even though things may be tough, such as Nazis taking away the family business and rounding up people and sentencing them to internment camps and killing them, people need to join together to achieve peace and justice in the world.  Another lesson learned from Pope John Paul II’s life is that if you reach out to people that are constantly respectful, you can be someone great, whether you are a local community leader, world leader, or even pope. Had Pope John Paul II never existed, there wouldn’t be as much respect as there is now among the world’s religions. If people follow Pope John Paul II’s example, relations among religions could be even better. 

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