Sun coverage: End of a papacy


The wooden casket bearing the remains of Pope John Paul II is carried into St. Peter's Square at the start of the funeral Mass at the Vatican. (J. Scott Applewhite / AP / April 8, 2005)

Sun coverage: End of a papacy

Coverage of the life of Pope John Paul II, the 84-year-old pontiff who died April 2, 2005.

May 15, 2005

Sainthood for Pope John Paul II: the fast track or the slow road?

In his more than 26 years as pope, John Paul II made saints out of 484 men and women, more than all his predecessors combined. Along the way, he created 1,338 blesseds - individuals who were deemed responsible for at least one miracle.

May 14, 2005

Pope picks American to oversee doctrine

Pope Benedict XVI selected yesterday a San Francisco bishop with a reputation as a conservative theologian to take over his former job - one of the most powerful in the Catholic hierarchy and instrumental in shaping the direction of the church.

April 12, 2005

With papal conclave pending, tourists, media look for news

VATICAN CITY - The man from Minnesota stood off to the side of St. Peter's Square and scrolled through the pictures on his digital camera with pride. He'd captured the dome of the basilica, the papal apartments, maybe the chimney of the Sistine Chapel - all the gems that a Vatican-watching tourist requires.

April 11, 2005

Cardinals keep silence on next pontiff

VATICAN CITY -- Pilgrims gazed forlornly at the third-floor window where Pope John Paul II traditionally appeared Sundays, and cardinals held to their vow of public silence ahead of next week's secret vote on a successor.

April 10, 2005

Vatican moves to quiet speculation on next pope, John Paul's canonization

VATICAN CITY - After a papal funeral that spread images of Catholicism throughout the world, Vatican officials imposed an information blackout yesterday to allow the cardinals who will choose a new pope to enter "an intense period of silence and prayer."

April 8, 2005

A humble epilogue for pope

VATICAN CITY - In his final public words, written in his will and released yesterday, Pope John Paul II reflected on his life and his faith, asked the world and God to forgive him for his failings, and appeared to have contemplated stepping down in 2000.

April 8, 2005

Followers, clergy tacking on 'Great' to the pope's name

ROME - From the faithful in the streets to homilies at the Vatican, an unofficial change is under way: Pope John Paul II is becoming John Paul the Great.

April 8, 2005

Viewing remains is 'reminder of the life'

VATICAN CITY - For much of this week, hundreds of thousands of people waited in line to view a body, a scene that would have been morbid in any other city.

April 7, 2005

Extraordinary security in place for papal funeral

VATICAN CITY -- With Rome looking more like a city preparing for attack than for the funeral of a pontiff whose tenure was marked by pleas for peace, cardinals of the Roman Catholic Church chose April 18 as the date to begin their secret deliberations to elect a successor to Pope John Paul II.

April 7, 2005

A Pilgrim In Rome

Inexpressible bond draws Baltimorean

ROME - Lou Williams knew the cobbled streets were no place for a 72-year-old with a cane. He had known about the heat and the crowds and the long waits, and he had been warned not to come without a hotel reservation.

April 7, 2005

With pope's death, secret cardinal will never be known

VATICAN CITY - Pope John Paul II will take a secret to the grave when he is buried tomorrow: the identity of the last cardinal he named.

April 7, 2005

Students log on to post devotion to pope's legacy

Michael Tenney is pretty sure Pope John Paul II isn't lacking in prayers. He knows that millions of followers around the world have kept the pontiff in their hearts and thoughts.

April 7, 2005

Television hopes to help viewers take part in Vatican ritual

At dawn tomorrow, as networks and 24-hour cable channels point their cameras and microphones at Pope John Paul II's funeral, an estimated 2 billion television viewers from around the globe will not hear much color commentary, many voice-overs or chatter from the newscasters.

April 7, 2005

Conclave's locale includes a little luxury

VATICAN CITY - Workers hauled in trunks marked diplomatico. Crews labored over the entrance foyer. Maids gathered in the basement cafeteria to rest for a moment.

April 6, 2005

Pilgrims flooding Rome to pay respects to pontiff

VATICAN CITY - Cardinals met here privately yesterday to prepare for the funeral of Pope John Paul II and their deliberations to choose his successor, while more than a million people made public displays of their adulation for the pontiff, crowding the city in what is shaping up to be the largest pilgrimage to the Vatican in history.

April 6, 2005

U.S. cardinals see many hurdles for next pope

VATICAN CITY - The next pope will need to address an accelerating loss of religious faith in the West, a growing gap between the rich and poor and the lack of trust between Roman Catholics and Muslims, three American cardinals said yesterday.

April 6, 2005

Up to 2 million Poles expected to converge on Rome for pope's funeral

WARSAW, Poland - People from across Poland gathered at memorial Masses yesterday to celebrate the life of Pope John Paul II, the champion of their nation and their faith.

April 6, 2005

Mourning death of beloved pope

Employees at Buca di Beppo in Maitland, Fla., have moved Pope John Paul II's bust to an office near the kitchen, awaiting shipment to the franchise's headquarters.

April 5, 2005

Pope's funeral set for Friday as thousands pay respects

VATICAN CITY - Pope John Paul II took a nearly last journey yesterday, carried solemnly from his papal home, across St. Peter's Square and into the ancient basilica where he preached, as more than 100,000 pilgrims looked on.

April 5, 2005

The Church

U.S. cardinal sees next pope staying course

VATICAN CITY - One of the most senior U.S. members of the Vatican hierarchy said yesterday that American Catholics would be best served by a new pope as committed to strict interpretation of doctrine as was Pope John Paul II, even if that approach alienated many of the country's 67 million faithful.

April 4, 2005

The challenges that lie ahead

The next pope will inherit a church facing serious challenges, such as the polarization between liberals and conservatives, competition with evangelical Protestants, the secularization of Western Europe and the clergy's steadily declining ranks.

April 4, 2005

Choosing A Pope

Crucial job awaits Cardinal Keeler at papal conclave

When word of Pope Leo XIII's grave illness reached the United States in 1903, Cardinal James Gibbons booked passage on every steamship leaving for Rome, according to his biographers, lest he miss the opportunity to vote for the pope's successor.

April 4, 2005


Pontiff's unprecedented attention won loyalty of many congregants

SOWETO, South Africa - At yesterday's generally somber Mass, hymn-singing members of the Regina Mundi Catholic Church choir danced a stutter-step down the aisle as congregants slapped hymnbooks to the beat.

April 4, 2005

Holy Land

His efforts to heal rifts in region are praised

JERUSALEM - Many of the faithful believe that this ancient city is halfway to heaven, and the mourners gathered last night despite the weather that was cold and wet and miserable.

April 4, 2005

Ecumenical outreach was part of vision

Pope John Paul II prayed in a synagogue and also met with Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat. He returned the relics of Orthodox saints and apologized for past church-inspired wrongs such as the Crusades, which caused widespread bloodshed in the Middle East, and the Inquisition, which led to the deaths of many Jews in Spain.

April 4, 2005

Baltimore native helps run the church

Pope John Paul II is dead. The election of his successor is at least two weeks away, and most members of his Curia have lost their positions.

April 3, 2005

Pope John Paul II dies

VATICAN CITY - Pope John Paul II died yesterday, more than a quarter-century after beginning a reign that transformed the papacy. He succumbed to years of health problems that ravaged his body but did little to diminish his control of the Roman Catholic Church or his political influence across the globe.

April 3, 2005

1920 - 2005

The life of Pope John Paul II

Pope John Paul II, who died yesterday at the age of 84, was a proud son of Poland who helped break communism's hold on Eastern Europe as he kept a strict doctrinal grip on worldwide Roman Catholicism.

April 3, 2005

Sorrow touches Baltimore region

On a bleak, rainy afternoon as their long vigil came to an end, Catholics across the region sought the comfort of church services and shared remembrances of Pope John Paul II.

April 3, 2005

City's Polish community mourns

Kneeling before a framed photo of Pope John Paul II draped with black ribbon, Sophia and Elizabeth Para wept as they prayed yesterday at Holy Rosary Roman Catholic Church in Baltimore.

April 3, 2005

World Reaction

Poland mourns beloved native son

KRAKOW, Poland - Eyes glinting with tears, throats hoarse with grief, the Polish faithful numbly absorbed the news last night that the man they regarded as their spiritual father and political liberator was dead.

April 3, 2005

Pope's 1995 visit

A blessed day in Baltimore

It was nearly 10 years ago -- Oct. 8, 1995 -- that Pope John Paul II landed in Baltimore. Yet even as he drew his last breaths, the memories of his brief visit remained vibrant in the minds of those he touched.

April 3, 2005

In hours in Baltimore, a shared meal and Mass

He was in town just a bit longer than the average workday.

April 3, 2005

Visiting the Holy Land with a 'jubilee pilgrimage'

They had jostled along the narrow streets that disappear into the dark warrens of the Dheisheh refugee camp, pressing forward to see Pope John Paul II and desperate for words of encouragement.

April 3, 2005

Ritual specifies who does what when pope dies

Like the ceremonial formalities that surrounded Pope John Paul II in life, his death has set in motion an elaborate choreography of centuries-old ritual. The formal process of papal succession is set in motion by Cardinal Eduardo Martinez Somalo, a 77-year-old veteran of the Vatican curia who serves as the camerlengo, or papal chamberlain.

April 3, 2005

National Reaction

Across the U.S., mourning transcends religion and politics

WASHINGTON - Across the nation yesterday, people of all religions and views paused to remember Pope John Paul II, praising the memory of a pontiff who championed the poor while preaching the virtues of peace, life and tolerance.

April 3, 2005


Suffering the wear of decades

Pope John Paul II skied the Alps, hiked the Rockies and traveled the world like no pope before him. He was the only pope in modern times for whom the word "athlete" seemed appropriate.

April 3, 2005

Dan Rodricks: Act of forgiveness sets example for the world

BY THE TIME he came to Camden Yards in Baltimore on that sun-splashed autumn Sunday in 1995, Pope John Paul II had for more than a decade been encased in glass when he traveled among crowds. The "popemobile" circled the baseball field and turned along the warning track, and for a few memorable seconds, as a reporter free to roam in the grass of left field, I had my audience with the Vicar of Christ. He looked right at me - I swear, right into my eyes - and gave the papal blessing from behind bulletproof glass.

April 3, 2005

Pope John Paul II

THE GOOD PASTOR gives his life for the flock.

April 2, 2005

Septic shock strikes quickly

Pope John Paul II's downward spiral yesterday was a classic example of what happens to a frail, elderly patient suffering from septic shock - a condition that remains maddeningly hard to cure, doctors said.

April 2, 2005

Out of silence, a melody rises

VATICAN CITY - St. Peter's Square yesterday was in many ways the portrait of an ideal spring day, sunny and warm and populated by hundreds of boisterous tourists.

April 2, 2005

Among Maryland's devout, tears mingle with prayers

As Pope John Paul II clung to life at his Vatican apartment in Rome, his followers in Maryland waited and watched for word of his passing. It was a roller-coaster ride for many, who cried, prayed and rejoiced as they listened to news updates and shared fond memories of the pontiff.

April 2, 2005

Pope helped inspire his homeland to fight communism

BERLIN - Karol Wojtyla became a priest in 1946, just as the Iron Curtain descended across Europe. The inspiration he provided as Pope John Paul II helped to tear it down.

April 2, 2005

Around the world, prayers for pope

MEXICO CITY - Crawling on their knees and bowing their heads, millions of faithful around the world appealed yesterday for the recovery - or the eternal rest - of a man who transcended the Roman Catholic Church's highest office.

April 2, 2005

End Of A Papacy

'I know he is at peace,' Keeler says

Cardinal William H. Keeler, who is expected to be the first Baltimore archbishop in more than 100 years to participate in the ritualized process of selecting a pope, prayed for the ailing pontiff yesterday even as he prepared to clear his schedule for an extended trip to Rome.

April 1, 2005

Doctors say Parkinson's is root of pope's ailments

Although recent reports of Pope John Paul II's medical condition have focused on a series of seemingly separate ailments, doctors say his downward spiral likely stems from a larger problem - his long struggle with Parkinson's disease.

April 1, 2005

Ritual for ill is shrouded in confusion

When Pope John Paul II received one of the last sacraments of Catholic life yesterday, he underwent one of the best known but most misunderstood rituals of the Roman Catholic Church.

April 1, 2005

Baltimore faithful reflect on legacy

As word spread yesterday across the Baltimore region of Pope John Paul II's deteriorating health, devout Catholics began vigils for him and religious leaders praised his 26-year tenure as having an impact far beyond the church's own followers.

April 1, 2005

Pope suffers from heart problems; worry grows

The Vatican said today that Pope John Paul II's condition was very serious, hours after he suffered "cardiocirculatory collapse and shock."

March 31, 2005

Pope starts to receive nutrition through a nasal feeding tube

ROME - Acknowledging that the pontiff's recovery has been slow, the Vatican said yesterday that Pope John Paul II is now receiving nutrition through a feeding tube in his nose to give him strength.

March 30, 2005

Pope may get feeding tube to help regain strength

VATICAN CITY - Pope John Paul II may have to return to the hospital to have a feeding tube inserted because he is having difficulty swallowing, the Italian news agency APcom reported yesterday.

March 28, 2005

On Easter, ailing pope stirs tears of faithful

VATICAN CITY - In a dramatic illustration of his decline, a grimacing Pope John Paul II appeared before thousands of Easter pilgrims yesterday and struggled to speak but ultimately failed.

March 27, 2005

Cardinal stands in for ailing pope at vigil, allowing John Paul to rest

ROME - A top Vatican cardinal stood in for Pope John Paul II during the Easter Vigil Mass yesterday, sparing the ailing pontiff from a lengthy ceremony and allowing him to rest up for Easter Sunday, when he was expected to bless the faithful.

March 26, 2005

Pope appears for the faithful via video link

ROME - Pope John Paul II's own suffering kept him away from his flock for the first time on Good Friday, but he appeared to the faithful via video, adding poignancy as Christians reflected on the suffering of Jesus on the most solemn day of the church calendar.

March 24, 2005

Pope appears briefly at apartment window

VATICAN CITY- A gaunt-looking Pope John Paul II made another silent appearance from his apartment window yesterday, giving his blessing to thousands in St. Peter's Square, where many wept at the sight of his battle with health problems during Holy Week.

March 20, 2005

As Holy Week begins, ailing pope aims to show he can still lead his flock

ROME - The final act of Pope John Paul II's pontificate is difficult to watch, but he is determined that the whole world see it.

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