This papal medallion shows a picture of Pope John Paul II (Johannes Pavlvs II) on the front and Our Lady of Guadelupe, a depiction of Mary as she reportedly appeared to Juan Diego near Mexico City in the early morning of December 9, 1531.
There will be plenty of sentimental value to this medal for many people, but, if you want to sell your medal to a dealer, he or she would be interested only in one thing: silver. So the question is 'How much silver is in this medal?'
It could be there is no silver at all. Or it could be that the medal is made of pure silver that has been plated with a super-thin layer of gold. I do not know of any medals like this that are made of pure solid gold.
Sheila, take your medal to a jeweler and have it tested for precious metal content. My gut-feel guess, based on reading about, and looking a pictures of these medals, is that there is silver in the alloy, but only about 50 percent.
According to an eBay page, this item weighs 29 grams. That is almost one full ounce of silver (there are 31.1 grams in one troy ounce). At 50 percent purity, the silver content is about one-half troy ounce. At the moment silver is trading for about $23 US dollars per troy ounce. (Look it up on kitco.com, it changes every day). A coin with one-half ounce of silver is then worth about $12, and that would be the value of this medal.