The Church of Divine Providence in Warsaw was a place of the nationwide thanksgiving for canonization of St. John Paul II.

John Paul II could be called ‘a patron of your freedom’. For he significantly contributed to the fact that 25 years ago Poland gained freedom – stated the State Secretary of the Holy See, cardinal Pietro Parolin.

The closest cooperator of pope Francis was an honoured guest of the VII Thanksgiving Day, which we celebrated on 1 June outside the Church of Divine Providence in Warsaw.

– I am glad that I can celebrate with you the 25th anniversary of the revival of your Homeland. I am glad that I can be with you in this church, in which every year, on the Thanksgiving Day you entrust the fates of Poland and Poles to Divine Providence – cardinal Parolin said to Poles.

Thanksgiving for canonization

The visit of cardinal Pietro Parolin was connected with the 25th anniversary of changes of the political system, renewing diplomatic relations between Poland and the Holy See and thanksgiving for canonization of John Paul II. Besides the visit in the Church of Divine Providence he took part in the solemn Holy Mass in the Warsaw architecture – on the occasion of the 25th anniversary of historic changes of political system. Besides Warsaw, the guest from Vatican also visited Cracow, Wadowice and Częstochowa.

His participation in the ceremonies on Wilano Fields in the capital city was inscribed in one of the four nationwide thanksgiving for canonization of John Paul II. The special guest from Vatican celebrated the Holy Mass with Polish bishops outside the Church of Divine Providence and he preached a homily.

– In this place, which you made the national votive, a monument of Poles’ gratitude towards Divine Providence, you thank for all sons of the Polish nation. You thank for St. John Paul II and his great pontificate. Lord has done such great things through him! – said cardinal Parolin. – The Church of Divine Providence is also thanksgiving for the Primate of the Millennium Cardinal Stefan Wyszyński, who was very brave to face up difficult times of communist regime, giving an example of love to Christ and Church. If it had not been for Him, there would have not been the Polish Pope. It was confirmed emotionally by John Paul II after he had been elected for the Holy See.

Do not be afraid of holiness

The State Secretary of the Holy See referred to the words of pope Francis from the canonization ceremony in Rome. The Holy Father reminded at that time that John Paul II had dreamed about remaining in the reminiscence of the next generations as a pope of the family.

– Dear friends, dear families, do not be afraid of holiness! How important it is today for the Christian families to be holy. Let them be a place, where one can experience God’s love to all people. I am aware that in Poland there are many testimonies of holy families, faithful to Christ and Church. In return, I thank you very much, also on behalf of pope Francis – said cardinal Parolin.

The guest from Vatican is aware of difficulties which are faced by families, which want to open up to life and remain faithful to the marital covenant till the end. The last word does not belong to those who proclaim the end of the traditional family, but to Divine Providence which realizes its plans through the family.

– Courage! God does not take away anything, but fills us with grace if we trust Him. I encourage You to entrust yourselves to Divine Providence and not be afraid of accepting children whom God wants to give to You -appealed the cardinal. – Let Your nation still give birth to new saints! They will decide about the fates of Your Homeland! They are also needed by the Church and the world.

Donations for building

The Thanksgiving Day has nationwide dimension because it is connected with the idea of building the national votive of Divine Providence. Therefore, every year, pilgrimages from various parts of Poland are invited here. In the previous years there were Highlanders and miners. Whereas, this time, a pilgrimage of Kashubes arrived in Warsaw.

In the procession with gifts, the Kashubes brought to the altar the image of Our Lady of Sianowo worshipped by them, miners gave an incense and representatives of the Foundation the Work of the New Millennium gave a Book with thanks for graces received through the intercession of John Paul II.

A similar Book had been earlier deposited in Vatican and at Jasna Gora. This year a special gift has been a golden sphere with over 50 thousand intentions written on special stony CD discs. After the Holy Mass it was placed just under the cross on the copula of the Church of Divine Providence.

Similarly as in other regions of Poland, also on the Wilanów Fields money collection was organized for continuation of building the church of Divine Providence. –Today everyone who gives a donation can visit the church – encouraged Piotr Gaweł, the president of the centre of Divine Providence.

The National Votive

During the VII Thanksgiving Day believers could admire the effects of work from the last 12 months. And there is a lot to boast about because visually the church has already the whole fronton, that is, it is covered with a stony elevation, windows have been built in, and also works on stairs leading to the church are being finished. – At present only the door is missing – says Piotr Gaweł.

It has been possible to collect about 20 million zlotys for building of the church within the year. The contribution includes also funds from the Culture Ministry which committed to support 1/3 of the Centre of Divine Providence, that is, the Museum of John Paul II and cardinal Stefan Wyszyński. It is the institution of culture which can also be partly funded from the state budget.

Nobody doubts that those two Poles, who were carrying the history and the fate of Poland on their shoulders, deserve it not only for spiritual, religious or prestigious reasons, but also for patriotic reasons. What they used to do for people in Poland is a matter beyond religion and ecclesiastical matter – emphasizes cardinal Kazimierz Nycz, the metropolitan of Warsaw.

In order to enter the church, the floor must be done, as well as the altar, the museum and the Pantheon of the Great Poles. Works will last for about 3 years, and their estimated cost is about 60 million zlotys. – If in the year 2016 pope Francis was to be in Poland and arrive at Warsaw, I would like him to see the Church full of people – said cardinal Nycz.

The so-far progress of building work would not be possible if it was not for the support of believers. – I thank all donors from whole Poland and abroad who contribute to support this votive of the nation. This our common work will serve to the next generations of Poles – says cardinal Kazimierz Nycz, the metropolitan of Warsaw.

The idea of building was also supported by the State Secretary of the Holy See. – Let the Church of Divine Providence be an alive monument – appealed cardinal Parolin on the Thanksgiving Day.


"Niedziela" 23/2014

Editor: Tygodnik Katolicki "Niedziela", ul. 3 Maja 12, 42-200 Czestochowa, Polska
Editor-in-chief: Fr Jaroslaw Grabowski • E-mail: