President: memory of St. John Paul II belongs to the Polish raison d’état

President: memory of St.  John Paul II belongs to the Polish raison d’état

For Poles, the memory of St. John Paul II is an integral element of the national heritage and belongs to the Polish raison d’état, wrote President Andrzej Duda in a congratulatory letter to the new bishop of Gliwice, Sławomir Oder.

At the end of January this year The Apostolic Nunciature in Poland announced that Pope Francis accepted the resignation of the current bishop of Gliwice, Jan Kopiec, and appointed Fr. Sławomir Oder – spiritual father of the priests of the diocese of Toruń, and in the past postulator of the cause of beatification and canonization of John Paul II.

At the end of Saturday’s episcopal ordination ceremony, Bp. Oder and his ingress to the Gliwice Cathedral of St. Piotr i Paweł, the head of the Chancellery of the President of the Republic of Poland, Grażyna Ignaczak-Bandych, read out Andrzej Duda’s congratulatory letter. In it, the president expressed his appreciation for the merits of Bp. Oder for the Church and Poland during his over 30 years of spiritual ministry.

“I would like to thank Your Excellency especially for the wonderful mission of the postulator in the process of beatification and canonization of our beloved countryman St. John Paul II. It is to the great knowledge and great effort of the bishop that we owe that less than nine years after the departure of the Father, the cult of the Polish Pope was officially approved in the entire universal Church, “wrote Duda.

“I remember with emotion the ceremony of November 9, 2015 at the Polish Embassy to the Holy See, where I had the pleasure of awarding Excellency the Commander’s Cross of the Order of Polonia Restituta. Today, once again, I would like to thank you for everything you have done for the good of the Polish Church and our nation,” he noted.

“The appointment of your Excellency to the episcopal office has a symbolic dimension just now, when the testimony of the life and work of St. John Paul II is needed, perhaps even more than ever. The Holy Father was the most eminent personality in the history of our nation,” the president said.

“As an auxiliary bishop, and then as the metropolitan archbishop of Krakow, and finally as the head of the entire Catholic Church, he led us, Poles, on the way to freedom and became the spiritual father of the independent Republic of Poland” – he clarified.

“The Polish Pope made our homeland famous in the world, but his extraordinary pontificate was above all of universal significance: he tirelessly preached truths that reached the hearts of millions – both believers, Christians and non-believers on all continents. He enjoyed a unique authority and respect in the contemporary world, and in his attitude and personal example, we recognized signs of holiness already during his lifetime, said Andrzej Duda.

“His wonderful teaching remains important and timely for every man of good will even today. For us, Poles, the memory of St. John Paul II is an integral element of the national heritage and belongs to the Polish raison d’état, which we should guard with absolute devotion and firmness, regardless of the consequences,” the president assessed.

“This is our civic, patriotic and historical duty,” he stressed.

The president wished Mr. Oder, that his excellent knowledge of canon and civil law and the rich experience gathered both in the dicasteries of the Roman Curia, as well as in formation work among the clergy and the laity, would be valuable and helpful in managing the diocese of Gliwice entrusted to him.

In the letter of the head of the government, read out by the Silesian Voivode Jarosław Wieczorek, Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki expressed his conviction that Bishop Oder, the special challenge of exercising the pastoral ministry of the Church in Gliwice will bear good and lasting fruit.

“+Do whatever he tells you+ – this call accepted today by the bishop has been implemented for years for the good of the Church and our homeland. I have no doubt that the valuable experience gained in the Roman vicariate, and then the competences of the postulator of subsequent canonical processes, primarily the beatification and canonization of Pope John Paul II, will contribute to the effective fulfillment of subsequent pastoral tasks,” Morawiecki wrote.

“I believe that accepting the new mission in the spirit of respect and dialogue, so important in the current ministry, will set the path of dedicated and consistent work for the mission of the Church, care for man, the region and the whole of Poland. I would also like to assure you of the will to harmoniously cooperate and cooperate in the service of the common good, declared the head of the government. (PAP)

author: Mateusz Babak

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