Download this free copy of the Last Will of Pope John Paul II (1920-2005).
Beloved by Catholics and non-Catholics alike, John Paul II was the first non-Italian pope in 455 years and the first ever from a Slavic country. Born Karol Jozef Wojtyla, John Paul II was pope during a period in which the Catholic Church's influence declined in developed countries, but expanded in the Third World.
During his reign, the pope traveled extensively, visiting over 100 countries, more than any of his predecessors. He remains one of the most-traveled world leaders in history. Besides his native Polish, he was also fluent in Italian, French, German, English, Spanish, Croatian, Portuguese, Russian, and Latin.
He passed away on April 2, 2005, and was buried in a crypt beneath St Peter's Basilica in Rome. On May 9, 2005, his successor Pope Benedict XVI began the beatification process for his predecessor.
Last Updated: 14-April-2016