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Rome Reports

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Relics and photographs of John Paul II on display in Rome

This new exhibition at the Arte Poli Gallery in Rome is celebrating the 100th anniversary of John Paul II's birth. It will be open to the public until April 2, 2021, the anniversary of the saint's death.

It contains a number of the saint's relics. There are some strands of his hair, as well as the saint's blood, collected on the day he was shot in St. Peter's Square.

Director, Museo dei Papi
“We have an alb, a purificator, objects used during the pope's pontificate. For the first time, the John Paul II Foundation has loaned us two original manuscripts of two speeches John Paul II gave to Polish faithful visiting Rome.”

The exhibition also features 23 photographs taken by Alessia and Giancarlo Giuliani. The latter's participation in 103 of John Paul II's 104 apostolic trips gave him privileged access to the Polish pope, evident in his photographs, like this one of the pontiff deep in thought in the privacy of Castel Gandolfo. 

Giuliani, who for many years photographed for the Italian magazine, Famiglia Cristiana, is especially proud of this one-of-a-kind photograph he took on Gorée Island. 

“I managed to take this picture. The pope, when he saw me, smiled and winked at me, because he's always had a soft spot for photographers, for the press, for image.”

It's precisely this pope, a man of the people, that Giuliani saw and wanted the rest of the world to see.

He captured it here, with another one-of-a-kind shot of the Polish pope carrying this little girl. 

And in this photo of John Paul II and Mother Teresa. 

Completing the gallery are works of art by Albano Poli, founder of Progetto Arte Poli. Among them is a small-scale rendition of the “Suffering John Paul II” found at the Cathedral of Ancona in Italy. 

The exhibition, organized by Progetto Arte Poli, Museo dei Papi and Catholic Press Photo, offers a more intimate look into the life of the pope whose profound care for humanity left its mark in every corner of the world.