Memoirs of Fr Antoni Marchewka
The book entitled ‘«Nadejdzie kiedys dzien wolnosci». Wspomnienia’ [«The day of freedom will come some day». Recollections] by Fr Antoni Marchewka, the third editor-in-chief of ‘Niedziela’ in the years 1945-53, published in the series of the Library of Niedziela, is available in bookstores. Fr Marchewka’s memoirs embrace the period of persecutions of the Church by the Nazis and the communists. The editor of ‘Niedziela’ described the methods and ways that the communist Polish authorities used in their fight against the Church, especially against the Catholic press. There are Fr Marchewka’s recollections from his arrest and imprisonment in the communist jail in the years 1947-48. The recollections also concern the history of the Catholic Weekly ‘Niedziela’ after World War II. Fr Marchewka recollects his collaboration with Zofia Kossak-Szczucka (Szatkowska), a well-known Catholic writer, after ‘Niedziela’ was reactivated after the war. He gives the details of his efforts to reactivate ‘Niedziela’ in the years 1953-57 after the authorities of the Polish People’s Republic suspended the weekly in March 1953. The memoirs of Fr Marchewka also concern the documents including the requests for permission to publish ‘Niedziela’ directed to the Main Office for the Control of the Press in Warsaw, to the Office for Religious Affairs, to the Speaker of the Parliament and to the First Secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party Wladyslaw Gomulka. ‘You can call the Editor of ‘Niedziela’ a real hero and a confessor in the Christian sense of this word since he endured many torments and tortures for God’s Name although he was not killed. Fr Marchewka was arrested on purpose: so that he could not edit the Catholic weekly that had a strictly Christian and patriotic character’, wrote Archbishop Stanislaw Nowak of Czestochowa in his foreword. According to Rev. Msgr Ireneusz Skubis, the current editor-in-chief of ‘Niedziela’, the memoirs of Fr Marchewka are an important testimony of a great priest and a record of the epoch in which the communist authorities fought against the Catholic press.
Fr Antoni Marchewka lived in the years 1890-1973. During the Nazi occupation he was involved in helping those who were endangered in a special way. Among other things he saved a Jewish boy called Artur Dreifinger. When he ran ‘Niedziela’ its circulation increased from 7,000 to about 100,000 copies and became a national periodical. In 1947 the officers of the Security Office arrested Fr Marchewka for his editorial activities and spreading Christian values and ideas on the pages of ‘Niedziela’. He remained in jail in Warsaw until June 1948. He was the first priest in the Diocese of Czestochowa imprisoned by the communist authorities. Fr Marchewka had died in Czestochowa eight years before ‘Niedziela’ resumed its activities in 1981.
You can order the book at
Redakcja Tygodnika Katolickiego „Niedziela”, ul. 3 Maja 12, 42-200 Czestochowa, tel. (0-34) 365-19-17, firstname.lastname@example.org.