Vatican dismisses documentary on JPII relationship

The Vatican has distanced itself from a BBC documentary expected to examine the relationship between St John Paul II and a married woman.

The Secret Letters of Pope John Paul II was due to be aired on Monday on the BBC’s Panorama programme.

Anna-Teresa Tymieniecka, a Polish-born American philosopher, worked on a translation of one of John Paul’s books.

The project is said to have sparked a four-year personal correspondence and speculation that the two may have fallen in love.

But a Vatican official said it is known that John Paul was friendly with Tymieniecka and with another Polish woman, Wanda Poltawska, with whom he consulted.

A source described the documentary’s content as being “more smoke than fire”.

The BBC programme was not expected to allege that either woman had a physical relationship with John Paul II.

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