Saturday, 19 December 2009

Holy Living

The Holy Father has today declared that Father Jerzy Popiełuszko was indeed a Martyr. Fr Jerzy was born on the 14th September 1947 in Poland. After his ordination he supported the workers oppressed by the communist regime through his priestly ministry. Several attempts on his life were made but failed. Finally, agents from the internal intelligence agency, the Służba Bezpieczeństwa, (Security Service of the Ministry of Internal Affairs) kidnapped him on October 19, 1984. The priest was beaten and murdered by three Security Police officers. Then, his body was dumped into the Vistula Water Reservoir near Włocławek from where it was recovered on October 30, 1984. It is great that the Holy See has recognised as Martyrdom the silencing of a priest who worked tirelessly for the dignity and rights of his people. Many of us will remember the uproar that this martyrdom caused and how it played a part in the establishment of Solidarnosc and the fall of Communism in Poland.

The Holy Father has also today declared as “Venerable” two of his predecessors. Pius XII (1876-1958) and John Paul II (1920-2005). This means that the Church acknowledges that these two Pontiffs lived the Christian virtues in a heroic way. It is also another step towards the canonisation of these two holy Popes that graced the Church with their presence in the last 100 years.

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