In 1958, he was elected to the throne of Peter. He was soon nicknamed the “Good Pope,” thanks to his enormous charisma, good humor, and the kindness and generosity for which he was already widely known.
He convened the Second Vatican Council to reflect on how the Church’s pastoral care would need to respond to the challenges of a world undergoing rapid social change.
Saint John XXIII left for the eternal embrace of the Father on July 3, 1963, was beatified by Saint John Paul II in 2000, and canonized by Pope Francis in April 2014. St. John XXIII is often remembered for the many humorous situations and tirades he played.
Here are some of his best-known jokes:
Immediately after being elected Pope and accepting the vote, he retired to put on the white robes of the Bishop of Rome, according to tradition. But then the problem arose: none of the three cassocks prepared in advance fitted him. The men in charge were embarrassed, and the new Pope smiled: “It’s clear that the tailors didn’t want me to be Pope.”
2-The other Pope
On one occasion, he received an Italian bishop in an audience that lasted longer than expected. His secretary, Msgr. Loris Capovilla, then went to remind him that he still had a long list of audiences. St. John XXIII commented to the bishop: “Sometimes I don’t know if the Pope is me or him.”
3-The Vatican workers
To someone who asked how many people worked in the Vatican, St. John XXIII replied: “About half.”
4-The superior of the Holy Spirit
The “good Pope” once left the Vatican alone and went to the Holy Spirit Hospital to discreetly visit a priest friend who was in hospital. When he knocked on the door, the Mother Superior appeared and, overcome with emotion, said: “Holy Father! I am the Mother Superior of Holy Spirit.” The Pope replied: “What a great career you’ve had, Mother! I only managed to become the Vicar of Christ.”
5-John the Baptist
On an occasion when he received an American senator, the latter introduced himself by mentioning his religion: “Holiness, I am a Baptist.” The Pope replied with his usual smile and wit: “I am John. Then we are complete!”
6-The Sisters of St. Joseph
A group of nuns came up to him and told him they were the Sisters of St. Joseph. The Pope immediately replied: “Well, how well preserved you are!” Published in Aleteia