How did John Paul I die?

b. October 17, 1912
d. September 28, 1978

Albino Cardinal Luciani was a genial, self-deprecating man who spent most of his life working with the poor. Upon being elected pope in 1978, he served only one month before dying suddenly--according to the Vatican, of a heart attack.

Some do not simply accept this explanation. He is said to have been found by his housekeeper, propped up in bed, documents on his lap, and a bottle of his blood-pressure medication open, the pills scattered. When she called Cardinal Villot, his first response was to call the papal morticians even before verifying the death himself or calling the Vatican physician to examine the body. Villot arrived in the Pope's room at 5:00 a.m. and gathered the crucial papers, the Effortil bottle, and several personal items which were soiled with vomit. None of these articles were ever seen again.

Word is, John Paul I got wind of the P2-Vatican Banking Scandal, and was going to order an investigation. As this would upset many people in the Vatican, P2, CIA, Mafia, Knights of Malta, etc. (btw--the banking scandal did happen: this is one of those relatively rare true conspiracies to be proved), John Paul I was assassinated. Others say it was the conservative members of the Conclave were upset that he was going to rethink the Church's laws on birth control. That may seem like a small thing to kill a man over, but tell that to Operation Rescue.

Me? I think the P2 theory may have some merit. But don't hold me to it.

It is not difficult to find a common basis for a conspiracy theory in the list of implicated parties Tlachtga lists above, i.e. in the commonality of their political orientation.

The pressures for reform applied to the Roman Catholic church in the twentieth century were perhaps the greatest in 500 years, roughly the time since this ultra conservative organization elected its' last non-italian CEO, the Dutchman Adrian IV whose 1 year reign perhaps reflects the change of pace from the 16th to the twentieth century.

The Holy See was silent thru the Nazi occupation of Europe as might be expected given its' position as a state within a then fascist state even if it is not quite what one might expect on the basis of Christian principle. This silence was also maintained at the time by Karol Wotyla who lived a few miles from Auschwitz during the peak of its' operation, a silence for which he went to extrodinary lengths to atone as Pope.

By the 1960s with world-wide change in progress and large numbers of catholics subjects of the totalitarian Stalinist regimes, the Church began to make the accomodations to those principles which have been its defining characteristic since it became a state religion under Constantine. These progressive reforms culminated in the changes codified in Vatican Council II.

The changes introduced by John XXIII and whose support continued under Paul VI were wildly unpopular among Catholic conservatives and remain so to this day. By the late nineteen seventies the progressive upsurge of the postwar era had begun to give way to its dialectical partner, a movement that can perhaps be marked as beginning with the election of Richard Nixon in 1968 and which was well advanced by the time of Cardinal Lucianis elevation. His chosen reigning name, the first official act of any pope, reflects his stated intention to continue the reforms of his predecessors.

For an analysis of the political impact of the termination of Albino Cardinal Lucianis papacy see "Pope John Paul II: a political obituary"¹.
¹ BTW, In it's April 21, 2005 the same site gave two articles on the elevation of Benedict XVI. Besides the informative content these are excellent examples of non-translation. The author is fluent in English and German, and neither article is any way a translation of the other. The new pope is of course German. 'Der Panzerkardinal' may give some hint of the entertainment ahead mit diesem Pabst.

Log in or register to write something here or to contact authors.