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I UNDERSTAND
English Section

Museum remembers 1981 assassination attempt on Polish-born pope

13.05.2021 09:01
A new temporary exhibition has opened at a museum dedicated to the late Pope John Paul II in his hometown of Wadowice, southern Poland.
Bodyguards hold Pope John Paul II (centre) after he was shot at St. Peters Square in Vatican City on May 13, 1981.
Bodyguards hold Pope John Paul II (centre) after he was shot at St. Peter's Square in Vatican City on May 13, 1981.Photo: EPA/ANSA FILES via PAP

The display, under the motto “I Forgive You,” features a replica of the room at the Gemelli clinic in Rome where the Polish-born pope was treated after an assassination attempt on his life 40 years ago.

The exhibits include a hospital bed with a mattress and linen bearing the clinic’s coat-of-arms, a bedside cabinet, a glass cabinet for medicines and two chairs.

Już od dziś w Muzeum Dom Rodzinny Ojca Świętego Jana Pawła II zobaczyć można wystawę czasową "Przebaczam", która...

Posted by Muzeum Dom Rodzinny Ojca Świętego Jana Pawła II on Tuesday, May 11, 2021

Visitors can also see fragments of a previously unseen documentary film with the participation of the pope’s personal doctor Renato Buzzonetti.

The museum says on its website that the exhibits are a silent testimony to the pope’s suffering as well as his devotion to prayer and forgiveness.

Four days after the assassination attempt, John Paul II, in a message recorded from his hospital bed, asked his followers to pray for “my brother” who shot him and said he had “sincerely forgiven" the Turkish assassin Ali Agca.

Już w najbliższy czwartek, 13 maja serdecznie zapraszamy na uroczystości dziękczynne 40. rocznicy ocalenia Ojca Świętego...

Posted by Muzeum Dom Rodzinny Ojca Świętego Jana Pawła II on Sunday, May 9, 2021

The core exhibition at the Wadowice museum contains the gun from which Ali Agca fired at the pope and the blood-stained suit of the pontiff’s bodyguard, Francesco Pasanisi.

The attempt on the pope’s life took place on May 13, 1981.

(mk/gs)