Founder's Time

In this final week of Founder's Time we remember Pope John XXIII.

Born 25 November 1881, Angelo Giuseppe Roncalli would later become the 262nd Pope of the Catholic Church, taking the name Pope John XXIII.

Pope John XXIII held office for only 5 years, but he remains one of the most popularly beloved popes in the history of the Roman Catholic Church - not only by Catholics but also by non-Catholics. He had spent 25 years as a papal diplomat for Bulgaria, Turkey and France, and six years as archbishop of Venice, not being elected pope until he was 77.

Pope John XXIII is perhaps best known for convening the second ecumenical council at the Vatican, known as Vatican II. When the elderly Pope John XXIII announced in January 1959 that he intended to call an ecumenical council - a great gathering of all the world's bishops - he indicated that the Church must be brought up to date and adapt itself to meet the challenges of modern times.

When asked to reveal his plans for the Council, Pope John simply moved to a window and threw it open, to let in some fresh air. This gesture came to symbolise the Church opening itself not only to the Holy Spirit but also to the world. John XXIII saw the Council as a 'new Pentecost'.

Our College symbolises the teachings of Pope John XXIII by serving God with Faith and openness. Pope John XXIII died 3 June 1963.

Silvana Vicoli
Faith and Justice Coordinator K-12