The National Bank of Poland on 14th May 2020 has issued new gold and silver collector coins which are in observance of the centenary anniversary of the birth of Saint John Paul II. Karol Jozef Wojty?a or John Paul II was born on 18 May 1920 in Wadowice. Those were particularly hard times in Polish history.
Shortly after regaining independence in 1918, Poland faced the threat of losing it again as a result of the Bolsheviks’ invasion. His youth was marked by World War II (1939-1945) and the German occupation of the country. In 1946 Karol Wojty?a was ordained as a priest, in 1958 he was appointed bishop, in 1964 Archbishop of Cracow, and in 1967 a cardinal.
The Pontificate of John Paul II was one of the longest and most prolific. In a crisis of values and moral confusion, he tirelessly taught that the shaken ethical, social, and political order can only be restored by bringing together justice and forgiveness, which are pillars of true peace.
On 2 April 2005, John Paul II departed to the House of the Father. On 1 May 2011, Pope Benedict XVI beatified him, and on 27 April 2014, Pope Francis, by the act of canonization, included him among the saints of the Catholic Church. The year 2020 was declared as the Year of Saint John Paul II.
The obverse of the gold coin depicts a fragment of Jerzy Kossak’s painting “Miracle on the Vistula”, whereas the reverse shows Saint John Paul II praying at the baptismal font in the Basilica of the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Wadowice.
The obverse of the silver coin (with a high relief) shows the façade of the Basilica of the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Wadowice and the sundial located on the wall of the church in Wadowice with the inscription “CZAS UCIEKA WIECZNOSC CZEKA” (Time flies, eternity waits). The reverse of the coin depicts Saint John Paul II with the pastoral staff.
The obverse of the other silver coin depicts a fragment of Jerzy Kossak’s painting “Miracle on the Vistula”, whereas the reverse shows Saint John Paul II and an image of the baptismal font in the Basilica of the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Wadowice.
Image Courtesy: nbp.pl