Poland, the native land of Pope John Paul II, announced on Wednesday it will strike collector coins to memorialize its native son ahead of when he is blessed, the Associated Press reports.
The European nation will mint 500 gold coins that are worth 1,000 zlotys apiece, or the equivalent of $350. Lesser-valued gold coins also will be struck at 100 zlotys ($35) and 25 zlotys ($8.75). The nation also will mint a silver coin that is worth 20 zlotys ($7).
All coins will contain an image of the pope while the top-valued gold coin also will have an image of Poland state emblem, which is an eagle.
Designs for the coins were presented in Warsaw. They will become available for purchase in April.
Pope John Paul II was born Karol Wojtyla and his successor Benedict XVI will bless his memory on May 1 at mass in St. Peter's Square. Pope John Paul II died at the Vatican in 2005.
At 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, gold futures were slightly up 0.01 percent, a 0.20 cent rise to $1,425.10 per troy ounce. Silver futures dipped 0.12 percent, a 0.046 cent reduction to $37.465 per troy ounce.
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