Be Not Afraid: A Retreat Guide on St. John Paul II

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When Karol Wojtyla, the Archbishop of Krakow, Poland, emerged onto the balcony of St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome after being chosen by the conclave of cardinals as Pope John Paul II, he made history.

That night, he hand-wrote his first papal homily, which set the tone for the next 26 years of his papacy. In it he said:

Brothers and sisters, do not be afraid to welcome Christ and accept his power… Do not be afraid. Open wide the doors for Christ… So often today man does not know what is within him, in the depths of his mind and heart. So often he is uncertain about the meaning of his life on this earth. (Homily, 22 October 1978)

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