HOLINESS FOR TODAY
St. John Paul II repeated: ‘Do not be afraid of wanting holiness. Do not be afraid of being saints’. Annual celebrations of the All Saints’ Day also brought us into the atmosphere of historical references. The Universal Church chooses saint patrons and life guides among the saints who have achieved the eternal happiness. Let’s hope that we will meet with everybody, those who were noticed or not, through the Church on the earth. The pantheon of Polish heroes who have been inscribed with golden syllables into our history, includes hundreds of saints and blessed. (By the way, I do not imagine a history lesson within the thread of the National Pantheon and matters of homeland, without the lesson about Polish saints). Among them there are patrons of the Polish nation: St. Wojciech, St. Stanisław the bishop and St. Andrzej Bobola, as well as other great people, whose achievements were to give generations of Poles an answer to the question: how to live? The queen Jadwiga, particularly worshipped by pope John Paul II, or brother Albert Chmielowski, an insurgent and artist, a benefactor, raised to the dignity of altars by the Polish Pope – stood on the way of life of Karol Wojtyła and ‘helped’ him, colloquially speaking, in his achieving holiness.
Today’s generation of priests also has its priest – the patron and guide. In the last weeks and days ( till 3 November) we were experiencing the 30th anniversary of the martyr death of Fr. Jerzy Popiełuszko. During communism, the priest of ‘Solidarność’ was accused of pursuing policy, ‘organizing séance of hatred’. It seems to me that the lavages of the untrue narration of the former spokesman of the government of the People’s Polish Republic of Jerzy Urban, are still germinating in hearts and minds of many Poles. For, today a generally launched model of priesthood by mainstream media, is a priest who does not teach, who does not have any pastoral influence, a priest who praises the contemporary times according to the interests of powerful groups: groups of gender ideology, homosexuals or – as we hear recently – supporters of euthanasia and abortion. A priest who opposes to destroying the natural order introduced by the Creator, today became ‘a politician in a cassock’, intruding and teaching lessons.
Priests, not only the Polish ones, lived and died with the stigma of their epochs; priests-martyrs of ancient Rome, with the stigma of those who had destroyed the caesarian authority, who did not want to pay tribute to roman gods; priests – January insurgents, became enemies of the caesarian country as rebels, which was punished with dissolution of their religious Orders and depravation of their property; chaplains of the National Army, scouts, or Steadfast Soldiers and moderators of Catholic associations, even prefects, were arrested and were to die in Stalin’s prisons, as traitors of the People’s Polish Republic and as those who caused backwardness. Fr. Jerzy Popiełuszko, whose funeral took place on 3 November 1984, at the church of St. Stanisław in Warsaw, was a martyr for faith, which was – is – and will be a carrier of courage in giving testimony by priests; giving it to the world destroyed by evil, for the sake of winning good. Priesthood of Fr. Jerzy becomes a signpost and a challenge for contemporary clergy and priests, at least from this moment when St. John Paul II gave the sign. This sign was His prayer in June 1987 at the grave of the priest murdered for faith and profaned during his life and after his death by communist propaganda.