Pope John XXIII opened the Second Vatican Council on October 11, 1962. Three years of preparatory work set the stage for a special five-hour contest, when 2,500 Catholic bishops, one each. Dressed in a white robe, he was brought into the Vatican Basilica. . They sat on the multi-tiered, upholstered stage that filled St Peter’s vast nave from Bernini’s bald head above the high altar to the red porphyry plate near the narthex on which Pope Leo III had made Charlemagne his Holy Roman Emperor.
The largest legislative body in human history will begin its formal work on October 13, after a day of deliberations on Pope John XXIII’s inaugural speech. In that 37-minute Latin address, the pope challenged the church to heal the wounds of a world that had nearly destroyed itself in two world wars — and did so by declaring Jesus Christ as the answer to modern times’ search for an authentic humanism.
https://www.wsj.com/articles/the-vatican-missile-crisis-cuba-1962-soviet-pope-john-xxiii-human-rights-china-second-council-ostpolitik-11665665840 The Vatican Missile Crisis – WSJ