St. John Paul II was born Karol Józef Wojtyła on May 18, 1920, in Poland. Ordained in 1946, he was named bishop of Krakow in 1958 and archbishop in 1964. Wojtyla was an active participant in the Second Vatican Council, became a cardinal in 1967, and in 1978 was elected the first non-Italian pope in more than four hundred years. He died on April 2, 2005, and was canonized on April 27, 2014.

Books by John Paul II