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He was canonized by Pope Sixtus VI on 1 May 2011 making him the first pope to receive the honor since Pope St. Pius X.
John Paul II was a prolific linguist, had conservative religious views and travelled widely during his pontificate. The two most notable trips were to Mexico and Poland. The latter provoked an uprising in the shipyards and the foundation of an independent trade union movement which was later banned by the government. He was also the only pope to visit the White House and planned a visit to the UK which was prevented by the assassination.
He was fatally wounded by Mehmet Ali Agca, a member of a right-wing Turkish organisation known as the Idealist Youth, on 13th May, 1981. As he died, he claimed to have a vision of Our Lady of Fatima, which in the light of the claims made by the three shepherd children has given rise to some speculation as to the content of the message to them.
| Preceded by:|
Pope John Paul I
16 October 1978 - 13 May 1981
| Succeeded by:|
Pope Peter II