I'd like to clarify much of the misinformation that is contained in this chain. I find it a little curious that hypotheses and theories are being espoused by well-intentioned folks who have never had occasion to meet Cardinal Dziwisz, Arturo Mari, several high ranking cardinals, and Catholic Monsignors and priests who knew Pope John Paul II very well. I have personally met each of these individuals including Cardinal Dziwisz for two days when he visited the John Paul II Cultural Center in Washington, DC. I had an opportunity to discuss JPII's signing habits with Dziwisz himself and I attach a letter from him where he definitively states that the seal of the secretary was indisputable proof of the authenticity of the two photos (of the type being questioned) and that the autographs were those of the Holy Father.To suggest that a Cardinal of the Catholic Church would falsify such information is incredulous. I also attach a letter written be noted papal expert Fr Richard Kunst who concelebrated several masses with the Pope and obtained several of his autographs personally; this I believe further validates the authenticity of the questioned signatures.Furthermore I attach a copy of a COA from JSA who at least for one of these photos felt they it was authentic.Please also be aware that a close personal friend and Catholic Monsignor Michael Dylag. was an avid collector of JPII autographs. Dylag had dinner with the Pope more than 30 times and concelebrated Mass with him more than 50 times. He states in the attached link that the Pope signed more than 500 items for him, including 35 items the week before he died. I visited Mons. Dylag's residence and can assure you that the signatures were consistent or identical to those being question. In fact, Dylag was the person who recommended that the raised seal be used as evidence of authenticity. Check out the link below if you doubt me.
If above link doesn't work, simply google Mons Dylag Pope John paul and u will see the article.
The order to the OR for a papal photo was for an unsigned original one that are sold publicly-----to suggest that this is for something signed in original ink with the papal seal is simply inaccurate. I'm not going into the issue of Parkinson's and the fact that the Pope signed with his right hand and that the Parkinson's affected primarily his left hand. Also, the medical impacts of Parkinsons on writing ability differ dramatically from those inflicted with it---and for non-medical experts to be opining and comparing Muhammad Ali's situation to the Pope's is not relevant---as any medical expert will tell you that there are wide variations in symptoms from this unfortunate disease. I hope this is viewed as helpful---but i place a high degree of trust in information i have received either orally or in writing from high-ranking members of the Catholic Church who were close to the late Pope. Any doubters can feel free to contact any of these individuals directly including Mons Dylag or even Dziwisz himself.
Thanks for posting this valuable and valid information.
Welcome to Autograph Magazine Live! I'm excited that you joined us and I hope you become a regular. You bring experience and expertise to our community in an area I don't think anyone in the US knows as well.
Thanks for your input.
This appears to be one of the preprinted Easter cards that were sent in return to people who sent Easter Cards to the Pope. In addition, they were sent to dignitaries, higher level prelates, and friends of the Vatican. VIPs and special friends received a folded version where the Pope sometimes added personalized messages either typed or hand written and signed in his own hand. A sample of a XMAS version he sent to his dentist is attached. The writing on your card was penned by the Pope---but its preprinted and not in original hand written ink.