Martin Luther King
He was born in Atlanta on January 15, 1929. After an outstanding life in school and college, he decided to follow a religious career.
When he returned south, married, he become pastor of the the Dexter Avenue Baptist Church and lead a black community during a 382 day boycott to the city buses lines because of segregation. “King overcame arrest and other violent harassment, including the bombing of his home” (www.lunamia.free.fr, 2009) But his goal was achived as the Supreme Court declared bus segregation unconstitutional.
As a civil-rights hero figure he continue growing importance, and achieving other little things that made a big difference to help communities organize against discrimination. In 1963 his “non violent tactics where put in Birmingham, during a mass protest for fair hiring practices and the desegregation of department-store facilities” (www.lunamia.free.fr, 2009)
He received a lot of designations, including the Nobel Peace Prize in 1964.
He died on April 4th, 1968, on the balcony of a hotel, and when people knew, it caused a lot of violence across the whole country. “However, King’s legacy has lived on” (www.lunamia.free.fr, 2009).
Nelson Mandela is still reminded as the most important hero in Africa. He was the first president of South Africa to be elected by democratic means under universal suffrage.
Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela was born on july 18th,1918 at Transkei, South Africa. He joined the African National Congress (1944): a movement of struggle against the oppression of black South Africans. Mandela soon after became one of the leaders of the League of Youth Congress. Despite 27 years in prison, Nelson was involved in the planning of activities with armed resistance. However, armed struggle was for Mandela, a "last resort", Mandela always used non-violent methods. During his time in prison he started being recognized as the most important black leader in Africa. He denied committing his political views to obtain his liberty. “I have fought against white domination, and I have fought against black domination. I have cherished the ideal of a democratic and free society in which all persons live together in harmony and with equal opportunities. It is an ideal which I hope to live for and to achieve. But if needs be, it is an ideal for which I am prepared to die.”(www.anc.org.za/people/mandela). This are words that Mandela said in the Rivonia Trial when he was convicted because of sabotage.
Days after his release on 1990, Mandela and his delegation agreed to the cancellation of armed struggle.
Mandela became a very important figure for education matters. He got honorary degrees from many international universities and became chancellor of the University of the North.
Mandela received the Nobel Peace Prize 1993. He accepted the price as an accolade to everyone who fought for peace and against racism.
Later, he was elected President of South Africa 1994-1999
Nelson Mandela retired from Public life in June 1999. He actually is living in his birth place.
John Paul II
He was borned in 1920 in Poland. His mother died when he was 9 years old, three years later his brother died too. When he was eighteen years old he got in the university, but a year after the university was closed because of the Nazi occupation, so he had to work in a quarry. In 1941 his father died. A year later he started studying for the priesthood in a clandestine seminary. When the occupation of the Nazi ended he continued his studies in the seminary and in 1946 he was ordained priest. Then he was sent to Rome where he finished his studies of theology in two years. He returned to Poland and in 1958 where he was named bishop of Krakow. Six years later he was named archbishop of Krakow, so he participated in the Second Vatican Council where he demonstrated he was born as a leader, helping with the Constitution Gaudium et spes, and attending to assemblies of the Synod of Bishops, owing to his help in 1967 he was named cardinal.
In 1978 he was elected Pope by the cardinals at the Conclave, where he took the name of John Paul II. He was the first non-Italian pope in the whole history of the Catholic Church. And he didn’t loose his time; in his twenty seven years of pontificate he visited around one hundred countries. But although he was a great person who made great changes to the world, he was blank of an intent of murdered, for this he spent two months and a half recovering. And unlike most of the people in the world he went to visit his assassin and forgive him.
Pope John Paul II had a preference for young people, so he created a World Youth Day in Rome, which in 1985 brought together millions of young people through the entire world. He also created the World Meetings of Families, which started on 1994.
He did lots of changes on the world during his time at the Vatican, so when on April 2 of 2005 John Paul II died, the whole world was in mourning and more than three million pilgrims went to Rome to pay homage to this great positive leader in the world.