Resources on Faith, Ethics and Public Life

Pope John Paul I

This individual is not a direct affiliate of the Berkley Center.

Pope John Paul I (Albino Luciani) was among the shortest-reigning popes in history. The former patriarch of Venice passed away a mere 33 days following his election on August 26, leading to a summer (1978) in which three different men occupied the highest office in the Catholic Church, the first "Year of Three Popes" in over 350 years. Though he had little time to establish major Church policies, he was a strong supporter of the reforms of the Second Vatican Council, and is also known as the first pope to communicate in a more personal, less formal way with the Catholic faithful, using "I" instead of the royal "we," and the first to forgo a papal coronation in favor of a more modest investiture ceremony. He was found dead in his bed on September 29, 1978, having suffered a heart attack overnight.
 
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