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Biographies

John Paul II : Man of Prayer

Pope John Paul II is a man who can ‘only be known from within’, as he himself said. Through his story, this book uncovers the spiritual message of the life of Karol Josef Wojtyla. Often called ‘John Paul the Great’ – and Time magazine’s ‘Man of the Century’ – he had a truly remarkable pontificate: the collapse of Communism as a power-block, the introduction of World Youth Days, the teaching on the Theology of the Body, the missionary journeys to country after country. Now declared a saint, he joins the ranks of those canonised by the Church: in exploring his spiritual life, we can learn what inspired and nourished this great man and share the spiritual journey with him. Karol Wojtyla was a very private person and rarely spoke of his interior life. Though deeply rooted in Poland, he was heavily influenced by Spanish mysticism. This is a not a man easily categorised – an intellectual giant, a philosopher of brilliance, a widely read academic – and we will never know the battles he had in co-operating with God’s grace. Pope John Paul II’s exhortation ‘Do not be afraid!’ with which he opened his pontificate alluded to a simple self-giving to God. Christ was at the centre of John Paul’s being. He was able to inspire and uplift people on an extraordinary scale, because he lived with daily faith and courage. Studying the inner life of this most remarkable man – philosopher, poet, playwright, priest, Pope – we come to understand that at its heart were simplicity and joy.

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Pope John Paul II is a man who can ‘only be known from within’, as he himself said. Through his story, this book uncovers the spiritual message of the life of Karol Josef Wojtyla. Often called ‘John Paul the Great’ – and Time magazine’s ‘Man of the Century’ – he had a truly remarkable pontificate: the collapse of Communism as a power-block, the introduction of World Youth Days, the teaching on the Theology of the Body, the missionary journeys to country after country. Now declared a saint, he joins the ranks of those canonised by the Church: in exploring his spiritual life, we can learn what inspired and nourished this great man and share the spiritual journey with him. Karol Wojtyla was a very private person and rarely spoke of his interior life. Though deeply rooted in Poland, he was heavily influenced by Spanish mysticism. This is a not a man easily categorised – an intellectual giant, a philosopher of brilliance, a widely read academic – and we will never know the battles he had in co-operating with God’s grace. Pope John Paul II’s exhortation ‘Do not be afraid!’ with which he opened his pontificate alluded to a simple self-giving to God. Christ was at the centre of John Paul’s being. He was able to inspire and uplift people on an extraordinary scale, because he lived with daily faith and courage. Studying the inner life of this most remarkable man – philosopher, poet, playwright, priest, Pope – we come to understand that at its heart were simplicity and joy.

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