Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Nine Days That Changed the World

Last evening at 7:00pm,I attended a new film about Pope John Paul II and his nine-day pilgrimage to Poland in 1979 that led to the fall of Communism in Europe. The screening was free and open to the public at Franciscan University of Steubenville, Steubenville, Ohio. The film was produced by Newt Gingrich and his wife, Callista. They introduced the film and explained what led them to produce this 94-minute documentary that traces the historic visit of Pope John Paul II to Poland the year after his election to the pontificate.
The ramifications of the pope's visit to his homeland were enormous, and the film convincingly shows that those few days in Poland set in motion the series of events that played a pivotal role in overthrowing Communist rule in Europe. Newt Gingrich, who converted to Catholicism in 2009 due to his wife's witness and an encounter with Pope Benedict XVI, presents the story of an extraordinary example of "freedom through faith."
Callista Gringich has stated " We really do try to echo Pope John Paul's message that no state government can come between you and God. And that our only freedom, our true freedom, can only be achieved and sustained through our faith."
The film used never-before-seen film footage of the Pope's visit. The Communist authorities were fearful of the impact of the pope's visit to Poland, snd so they did everything to minimize its effect. The Gringriches discovered that the Polish bishops, not trusting the Communist authoriies, gave video cameras to people in the crowd. telling them to record the event. The footage was made part of the Polish National Radio.
The movie was inspired in part due to the recent media negative coverage of the Church.
Newt Gringrich, well aware of how scandal can obscure great achievements, decided to highlight one of the greatest lasting contributions of Pope John Paul II.
The movie is produced by Citizens United ( a group active in promoting the Traditional American values.)
To schedule a screening, for more information, or to order the DVD, see the web site:

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