20 Facts About John Paul I

1. John Paul I eliminated the traditional, elaborate papal coronation, opting for a simpler ceremony.

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2. John Paul I was pope only from August 26 to September 28, 1978, the shortest term in modern times.

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3. John Paul I is the first Pope born in the 20th century, and the last Pope to die in the 20th century.

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4. John Paul I was the first pope to have a Papal Inauguration and the last pope to use the Sedia Gestatoria.

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5. Pope John Paul I was the first pope to abandon coronation, and he was the first pope to choose a double name for his papal name.

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6. John Paul I refused to have the millennium-old traditional Papal Coronation and wear the Papal Tiara.

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7. John Paul I was well-read, and was known for reading several newspapers each morning, including one from the Veneto region, before beginning his day.

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8. John Paul I continues to say that religious freedom must be freely exercised by the individual.

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9. John Paul I makes a clear understanding of true and false liberty.

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10. John Paul I said that by professing love for God, Catholics say: "my God I want to be holy, I will strive to be holy".

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11. John Paul I believed that sainthood was something that all Catholics could achieve if they led a life of service to God.

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12. John Paul I was a friend to the Muslim people and as Patriarch of Venice said to Catholics that faithful Muslims had the "right to build a mosque" to practice their faith in the archdiocese.

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13. John Paul I refused to speak at the event or even attend it.

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14. John Paul I was the first pope to refuse to be crowned.

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15. John Paul I was the first modern pope to speak in the singular form, using 'I' instead of the royal we, though the official records of his speeches were often rewritten in more formal style by aides, who reinstated the royal we in press releases and in L'Osservatore Romano.

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16. John Paul I was the first pope to designate himself "the First" with the name.

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17. John Paul I urged fellow priests in Venice to sell their valuables to contribute to this cause and as a way for them to live simply and humbly.

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18. John Paul I took possession of the diocese on 11 January 1959.

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19. John Paul I remains the most recent Italian-born pope, the last in a succession of such popes that started with Clement VII in 1523.

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20. John Paul I was the first pope to have been born in the 20th century.

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