A fortnight ago the social, print and virtual media were replete with stories that the late Pope John Paul II had a romantic relationship with a married woman for three decades. The most notable among other media that circulated the stories was the BBC online, Yahoo news service, the Bambazuka News, Facebook, Twitter and others. This story provoked me to carry out some archival research to find out to which extend was Pope John Paul II or Karol Wojytila had a sexual experience of three decades with a married woman against the stern catholic vow of celibacy, that is usually ritually celebrated along with the sacrament of ordainment. The sources of data for the purpose have been literary writings and newspaper reports.
Literary writings used for the archival research are David Yallop’s In God’s Name, Berber Thiering’s Christ the Man, the Catholic Observer (l’oservatore), The Holy Grail, and Marco Politi’s His Holiness, and the writings of Lech Walesa. The findings are that yes, it is true Pope John Paul II loved a married woman for three decades but not out of sexual motivation but out of passion for art, literature and philosophy.
The facts are that Dr Anne-Teresa Tymiencka, a married woman was a close friend to Karol Wojytila for three decades. She was a doctor of Phenomenology in very many American universities including Havard. When she came across the writings of cardinal Wojytila, in the book, The Acting Man, she was attracted to the author out of three reasons, philosophical alertness in the writings, the author was a native of Poland as she was and also the author was a man. Of course all women are attracted to men with special traits, power and tempestuous lifestyle.
The night and day relationship was all about philosophy and art, Wojytila being a guru of art and philosophy given his back-ground in poetry and theatre , whereas Anne-Teresa was a guru of philosophy of phenomenology with a strong passion for intellectualism. Their correspondences in form of hand written letters are still safely kept in an intact position at Havard University library. Marco Politi in the book His Holiness points out that it was Dr, Anne-Teresa Tymeniecka that translated Wojytila book from the polish version, Osoba i czyn into an English version as The Acting Man .During the process of translation that took a period of four years Anne-Teresa and Wojytila were always together up to late in the night on every day in the absence of the husband of Anne-Teresa. The fact is that they were philosophical partners but not sexual partners. This realtion was also an informal school to Cardinal Wojytila; it gave him the frame of mind to write the encyclical Veritas Splendor or the splendor of truth in which he discussed theology of sexuology. The same relationship also gave Wojytila the opportunity to contribute very incisive philosophical papers to the scholarly journal Anelecta Husserliana.
In contrast to the alarmist tone in the article by Henry Makori, published in the Bambazuka News, that Pope John Paul had broken a vow of celibacy to have three decades of sexual relationship with someone’s wife, the archival facts reveal the otherwise; the frame of the mind between cardinal Wojytila and Anne-Teresa was basically philosophical but not erotic nor prurient. Moreover, sexual desire among animals and logically among human beings is a natural feeling expressing the state of normal biological conditions of an animal. The abnormal behaviour in this situation is the vow of celibacy not Pope’s sexual adventures or aggressiveness. There is nothing astounding for a human being to go against abnormality in the vow of celibacy for normality in man to woman sexual relationship.
The only unusual thing in this juncture is a phenomenon that all great leaders are at least victims of sexual imbroglio once in their life. Napoleon had Josphine, Caesar had Cleopatra, Clinton had Monica Lewisky, Odysseus had calypso, Aphrodite had Sapho, and Prince Charles had Diana in a tri-angle with Afawhyed, Mandela had Yvon Chaka Chaka, Jesus had Mary Magdalene, Mohammed had Hadija, Samson had Delilah, Hitler had Eva Braun and Kenyatta has Anne Waiguru, then going by logic there is nothing wrong in the Papacy if Wojytila had his sexual projections in Anne Teresa Tymniecka.
But again, what is the actual source of the rumours that Karol Wojytila had three decades of sexual relation with a married woman? The answer is this; it comes from the politics of ideology between Russia and America. Poland the birth place of Wojytila after having been a colony of Nazi Germany got annexed and became a physical and ideological colony of Russia. Wojytila as a young boy experienced these two sad episodes. Later on when he became the Pope at the Vatican, he immediately turned his political and ideological salvo on to the communist dictatorship at his home in Poland; Lech Walesa was only his proxy and mouthpiece. Marco Politi writes in the His Holiness that, after the politburo realizing that it was going to be defeated in Poland, the Soviet leaders that included comrades; Gorbachev, Goryminko, Brezhnev and Suslov used all tactics to counter the ideological and social terror of Christian socialism on the Soviet communism in Poland; mudslinging was one of the tools. Then they chose to write in the Pravda, the Soviet Newspapers and other socialist papers around world that Pope John Paul had sexual relationship for thirty years with a married woman when he was a cardinal. They thought this would weaken the spirit and the intellect of the Pope, but it did not. Thus, it beats logic for the BBC, to repeat doing what soviets did five decades ago, maybe it is a vice of intellectual laziness among the British media.
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