Like any pope, John Paul II was not born as "John Paul." Here are the names, nicknames, aliases, and pseudonyms John Paul II used (or answered to) in his lifetime.

  • Karol Jozef Wojtyła — The name Pope John Paul II was born, baptized, and grew up with.

  • Lolek — The nickname young Karol was called as a boy. The English equivalent would be Charlie or Chuck, because his first name is Charles in English.

  • Wujek — Polish for “uncle.” This was a nickname given by students to their professor-priests — especially under Communist occupation — so as not to alert government officials that a Catholic priest was violating the law and teaching outside of school.

  • Andrzej Jawien, Piotr Jasien, and Stanislaw Andrzej Gruda — Three pseudonyms John Paul II used when he authored a few plays and poems.

  • John Paul II — The name he took after being elected pope by the College of Cardinals in 1978 after the death of Pope John Paul I, who only reigned for one month.