Saturday, May 13, 2006

25 Years Later


VATICAN. 13 May 2006. On 13 May 2006 it will be 25 years since John Paul II was shot by a Turkish gunman as he blessed the crowd in St. Peter’s Square, and the anniversary will be watched for any announcement from his successor, Pope Benedict XVI, of a date for the late pontiff’s beatification.

Following his extradition from Italy in June 2000, Mehmet Ali Agca -- the Turk who shot John Paul -- was sentenced to seven years and four months for armed robbery committed in the late 1970s, for which he served time in an Istanbul jail. Agca was released in Jan 06, but his freedom appears to have been short lived.

The Pope set his predecessor on the road to sainthood in a record 26 days after his death, timing his announcement to coincide with the 24th anniversary of what John Paul considered was his miraculous survival of the assassination attempt in 1981. The Pope waived the usual rules, which require a five-year wait before the Church begins to make someone a saint.

John Paul II died on 2 April, leading to widespread calls from Catholics worldwide for him to be made a saint. (NewsAhead)
From Associated Press: A marble plaque is seen in St. Peter's square at the Vatican Saturday, May 13, 2006, on the exact spot where Pope John Paul II was shot on May 13, 1981, to, according to Pope Benedict XVI, ''remember from now on that dramatic event.'' A Fatima statue, with one of the bullets which struck Pope John Paul II embedded in it as a memento, arrived in procession where exactly 25 years earlier a Turkish gunman shot and gravely wounded Pope John Paul II who has credited his survival of the assassination attempt to the intercession of the Madonna di Fatima. (AP Photo/Pier Paolo Cito)

Images #1, #2, #3.


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