RELICS OF BLESSED PRIEST POPIEŁUSZKO
In the cathedral of St. Olaf in Oslo, relics of blessed priest Jerzy Popiełuszko were passed over to Norway. They were taken to this country by a delegation of 70 pilgrims from Poland, who have been related to the cult of the martyr from Żoliborz for years
We are very glad that we can make a pilgrimage to Norway. I heard long time ago that the first monument of Fr. Jerzy was built there – says Józef Popiełuszko, brother of the murdered priest to ‘Niedziela’. Also his wife makes pilgrimages to this Scandinavian country, as well as his grandson and two sisters of the blessed priest.
This journey is connected with the 30th anniversary of the martyr’s death and the jubilee XXX Walking Pilgrimage from Oslo of Polish Diaspora to Our Lady from Enebakk in Mariaholm. The Norwegian Polish Diaspora sets off onto the pilgrimage route every year, in order to give a testimony of its faith, pray for Homeland and also unite with Poles making pilgrimages to Jasna Góra.
About 200 people usually participate in the pilgrimage. This year there are a lot of us because there is a group of over 700 pilgrims from Poland with us – Bożena Nakonieczny says to our weekly, a co-organizer of the pilgrimage, related to the Norwegian Polish Diaspora for many years.
The jubilee pilgrimage became very popular. Norwegian Catholics join us and a big group of the Vietnamese from there.
Norway is not a Catholic country, and its evangelical Church is empty all the time. – when we go in the foot pilgrimage every year, we are perceived as a group of quite exaggeratedly religious people. But, despite that, we go out into streets, we make pilgrimages in order to give a testimony of faith, which is in our nation - says Bożena Nakonieczny. – Now we went to strengthen the Polish Diaspora there. What is more, we took Fr. Jerzy with us. He will make our pilgrimage fruitful – adds Lesław Majewski, a guide of the group of pilgrims from Poland. – Personally I pray for the return of Solidarność (‘Solidarity’ movement) into our nation, because there is a lack of it.
Moreover, a group of people went to Norway, who have been related to the cult of the martyr from Żoliborz for years. Beside the family of Fr. Jerzy on the pilgrimage route, there are representatives of the NSZZ ‘Solidarność’ and the Katyń Committee.
- I feel a little like an apostle of Fr. Jerzy. But I am full of appreciation that the Norwegian Polish Diaspora could mobilize so many people from our country to make pilgrimages to that sanctuary – says Maria Ochman, the chairwoman of the National Secretariat of Health Protection NSZZ ‘Solidarność’.
Also priests: Fr. Sławomir Żarski, Fr. Janusz Mazurek and the redemptorist Fr. Waldemar Gonczaruk came with the group of pilgrims from Poland. It was just the father who made sure that each of pilgrims would receive a copy of the weekly ‘Niedziela’. – Such pilgrims of Poles from Poland and on emigration is very important. They show others that we still create a national and spiritual community.
Relics of blessed priest Jerzy Popiełuszko are not the only gift for the Catholics from Norway. Religious Sisters from Łagiewniki passed the relics of St. Faustine to the catholic parish in Askim. This event is connected with the great jubilee of celebrations of the millennium of baptism of St. Olaf, the king of Norway.