28. September 1978... 33 days after the world was taken by joy for the unexpected choice for Cardinal Albino Luciani, patriarch of Venice, to be the new pope, the world came to a standstill because of the sudden death of Pope John-Paul the first. Hope vanished and one questioned himself whether it was the intention of God to call his servant with him this soon. “The smiling pope”, as he was called, did not have the chance to write encyclicals, visit the world or accomplish some structural changes. But he did give church an other and a more human image. He chose “Humilitas”, (humility) as his device, and refused to carry the tiara, and used the singular “I” in stead of “we”. He did not want to be carried on a palanquin, but he wanted to be closer to the people. It seemed that God was smiling to the world through this pope.
As patriarch of Venice, he wrote fictive letters to famous persons, who were published as a book in 1976. The letters became his “spiritual testament”, because of the fact that his being and his message are presented in a vivid and clear way.
With this website, we want to take you to Canale d'Agordo, Feltre, Belluno, Vittorio Veneto, Venetië, Rome and all other places where Albino Luciani has lived and worked. We want to show especially who this man was, so that this papacy of 33 days would no go lost in history.
Pope John-Paul I, who showed something of Gods’ charity to the world through the “smile of God”, lives along in the hopes of many people.