DEVOTED TO GOD AND HOMELAND
The Catholic University of Lublin named John Paul II, started the 96th academic year. The great feast at the oldest university in Lublin was proceeding under the sign of the presence of archbishop Józef Michalik, the metropolitan of Przemyśl and the chairman of the Polish Episcopal Conference.
The honored guest was presiding over the inauguration Holy Mass and received the title ‘Deo et patriaededitus’ (Devoted to God and Homeland). The decision about honouring archbishop Michalik with the title referring to the slogan placed in the emblem of the university was made by the Senate of the Catholic University of Lublin on 25 April this year. As it was justified, the prize-winner had been calling for developing relations of the Polish culture with Christianity for decades and for basing the social life on permanent moral principles, he also appeals for protection of the family institution, for acknowledging the dignity of human life in every phase of its development and he also promotes the attitude of forgiveness based on the truth and he engages in formation of the youth. – I think that there are very few people who would be devoted to God, the Church and Homeland as much as archbishop Józef Michalik is – said archbishop Stasniław Budzik, the metropolitan of Lublin and the Grand Chancellor of the Catholic University of Lublin.
Fr. Prof. Piotr Stanisz, presenting the person of the prize-winner, emphasized that the basic sign of devoting oneself to God and Homeland is devoting them one’s life ministry. He presented archbishop Józef Michalik first as a promoter of an idea of conciliation of our nation with neighbouring nations and as a promoter of an idea of basing life of particular people and communities on permanent values resulting from the Gospel. Fr. Prof. Stanisz also called archbishop Michalik ‘a promoter of an idea of persistent aiming at the better future, lightened with Christ’s teaching’.
- The basic condition of successful future is building on permanent values recognized thanks to the Gospel, therefore among priorities of our times, the Priest Archbishop mentions among the others: care about a real faith, memory about Christian heritage of Europe, and also a belief that the only value human road is returning to unchangeable and permanent values, which include especially human life from the conception to the natural death, human dignity and correctly understood freedom and family understood as relationship which is permanent and open to life between a man and a woman – said the Priest.
In the homily preached during the Holy Mass, the chairman of the Polish Episcopal Conference noted the substrate of the Christian civilization (but not faith), observed in Europe.
- In a great extent, the crisis is conditioned by the reduced look at the man and an attempt of depriving him of an inseparable relationship with the Creator. – We live at the times when the man must often be defended against himself, and it must be done as often as the man negates himself, breaching laws of nature and as often as he calls the evil the good, and when he calls his revolt against Divine laws as freedom. Here there is the great and creative role of the Catholic University and the Catholic laity, which defends life from the conception till the natural death. And it also defends us against a ‘new religion’, remembering about child’s rights to be born in a family consisting of a mother and a father and it defends a child against every mischief – he emphasized.
On the occasion of the new year of studies and work, archbishop Józef Michalik expressed his best wishes to the university in its upbringing giants of thoughts and spirit for families, workplaces, the Church and Homeland, that is, saint people. – These are people full of humanity, which is needed by the world – he said.