Archbishop of Kraków, Archbishop Marek Jędraszewski, spoke during the Holy Mass at Jasna Góra Monastery. “Perfidious methods of pressure are tried by promising money for us to depart from God’s law and accept it in the name of so-called tolerance,” he said. The Hierarchy added that this “honors really human dignity.” He also said that “we cannot accept that they want to corrupt our children and young people, starting from kindergartens, by introducing this kind of teaching that deprives them (…) of such touching older people of purity, innocence, natural goodness.”
During the XXXIX National Workers’ Pilgrimage on Sunday at Jasna Góra in Częstochowa, a mass was celebrated under the chairmanship of the Archbishop of Wrocław, Archbishop Józef Kupny, the national chaplain of Working People. It was attended by representatives of various industries and professions, mainly members of NSZZ “Solidarność”. As every year, members of the family of Father Jerzy Popiełuszko – the patron of Solidarity, who initiated the meetings of workers at Jasna Góra, as well as representatives of the government, parliament and regional authorities, also came to Częstochowa.
The homily was delivered by Archbishop Marek Jędraszewski, Archbishop of Kraków. He devoted her primarily to teaching Cardinal Stefan Wyszyński – raised a week ago to the dignity of the blessed – and of the holy Pope John Paul II.
Archbishop Marek Jędraszewski: they want to corrupt our children and youth, starting from kindergartens
Archbishop Jędraszewski quoted their statements, inter alia, on love, justice, solidarity and the work ethos. – We consider these contents today and see how often they want to divide us into Catholics who need to be “filed” and those wise who want to rule us, introducing a new morality, striking what is in us, in our souls, contained from the very the beginning of our existence as humans, he said.
In his opinion, the statement that “dignity must be earned” is not true because – as he said – it belongs to everyone from the moment of conception.
– We cannot afford to take away our sense of personal dignity as a human being. Just as we cannot agree to try to introduce to us the attitude that John Paul II complained about many times – life as if God did not exist, life concerned only to have as much as possible – said Archbishop Jędraszewski. He added that it is not only about material goods, but also as much pleasure as possible, most often sensual.
– We cannot accept that they want to corrupt our children and adolescents, starting from kindergartens, by introducing this kind of teaching that deprives them – children already, small – so touching older people of purity, innocence, natural goodness – he continued.
Archbishop Jędraszewski: trying to use perfidious methods of pressure
The Hierarchy argued that true solidarity should concern every human being. He called for “the courage of solidarity that will always unequivocally say ‘no’ to any kind of violence.” – Especially towards the smallest, but also towards those who want to be marginalized at all costs, forget, despise, not worry about their fate – he continued.
He expressed the conviction that this was a problem also affecting Poland, especially in recent times. – What perfidious methods of pressure are tried by promising money for us to depart from God’s law and accept it in the name of so-called tolerance, which is truly human dignity – said the metropolitan. – Not easy times when these basic levels of love must come back: people, family, homeland – added Archbishop Jędraszewski.
He also said that everyone has basic rights, such as the right to birth, proper conscience, education, and decent work. – We are aware of this, and for this we also want to thank God today, as NSZZ “Solidarność” from the very beginning wanted and wants to serve the authentic good of Polish society and the Polish nation – he added.
President of Solidarity, Piotr Duda, on the introduction of internship pensions
The head of Solidarity, Piotr Duda, who spoke just before the mass, said that, as every year, all professional groups, the whole world of work, appeared on the pilgrimage.
– We are proud of it, because this is what the trade union Solidarity is – he said. He argued that Solidarity activists were fighting for the affairs of all employees, and “not just for a selected professional group”. – We will never leave the negotiating table until we solve the problems of all employees and never negotiate at the expense of another professional group, because this is what solidarity is all about – he emphasized.
The chairman referred to the 40th anniversary of the Solidarity uprising celebrated this year, recalling that the anniversary celebrations were attended by the president and the prime minister. He also noted that it was a difficult year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. He also called on everyone to get vaccinated against the coronavirus. He argued that it was an act of great solidarity, also towards colleagues at work.
Duda said that last year the union was working to prevent “the government from thinking about liberalizing labor law” in the pandemic era, and it was successful. Another task of S, as he pointed out, is the introduction of work-related pensions. – Unfortunately, it is regrettable to say that politicians are not too eager to get involved and carry out this procedure in parliament. We are alone here with the president – he said. He also informed that the union had already collected a sufficient number of signatures for the citizens’ initiative concerning this, but was still collecting them in order to show politicians that it was an important social problem.
The head of Solidarity thanks you for closing the trade ban on Sundays
Duda also thanked the parliamentarians, the Marshal of the Sejm Elżbieta Witek and Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki for the fact that On Friday, the Sejm passed an act that is to tighten the ban on Sunday trading. – I say to the employers of this business: no more playing parcel lockers. Shame on you, this is not corporate social responsibility – he said. He expressed his hope that the new law would soon be on the president’s desk and all trade workers would be able to say that “Sunday is for the family and for God.”
The head of Solidarity also referred to the work on Polish order, expressed his satisfaction that the tax-free amount should be increased in line with trade unionists’ demands. He also assessed that the social dialogue was improving and positively assessed the introduction of the possibility of deducting union contributions from income.
In his speech, he thanked those who defend the faith and the Catholic Church in the fall of last year, as well as on a daily basis, to which – as Duda said – Solidarity owes a lot. He described the events of last fall as “scandalous scenes” which, in his opinion, were not protests but acts of “hooliganism, profanation and vandalism against the Church and our priests.” – Thanks to the Polish Church, today we can function in a free, democratic country and we must defend this value – he said.
Last fall, Jarosław Kaczyński, the leader of PiS, called for participation in the defense of the Church. It was related to the wave of protests over the ruling of the Constitutional Tribunal tightening the abortion law.
A letter from President Andrzej Duda
Letters to the participants of the pilgrimage were sent by President Andrzej Duda and Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki. The president thanked the bosses and members of Solidarity for creating “a unique trade union organization that cares about respecting workers’ rights, and at the same time cultivates the patriotic and Christian tradition.”
“Thank you for remaining faithful to the will of Blessed Father Jerzy Popiełuszko, who celebrated Mass here 38 years ago on the embankment of the Jasna Góra sanctuary for the participants of the first Workers’ Pilgrimage,” wrote the president. He also reminded that this year those events are remembered in a special way, in connection with the approaching 40th anniversary of the introduction of martial law. “The regime did not withdraw from the killing of Father Jerzy, who was a charismatic guide and steadfast defender of the dignity of a worker. The martyr’s death of the priest did not break the spirit, but strengthened the unity and solidarity that united the nation, which ultimately allowed the defeat of the evil empire,” wrote Andrzej Duda.
The president added that now, in a free country, Poles are carrying this heritage. “By cultivating the fundamental values for our community, we want to build the prosperity of our society in our own, strong, sovereign and just state,” he emphasized. He pointed out that on this path there is always the current message: overcome evil with good.
Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki in his letter: Today our homeland is truly flourishing, and we benefit from its development in freedom
Also Prime Minister Morawiecki, in a letter read during the pilgrimage by the Minister of Family and Social Policy, Marlena Maląg, referred to the figure of priest Popiełuszko, who also taught about the work ethos. “Thanks to his steadfast attitude, up to the sacrifice of our own lives, we are free today. Right now these efforts of the most difficult years are bearing fruit. Today our homeland is truly flourishing, and we enjoy its development in freedom,” wrote the head of the government.
He expressed the conviction that Poles can work together reliably, despite their differences, undertake the greatest challenges and plans that will fulfill “the boldest dreams of all Poles”. “‘Solidarity is the unity of hearts, minds and hands, rooted in ideas that are capable of changing the world for the better,’ as Fr Jerzy said,” Morawiecki pointed out. He called for cultivating this idea and thanking S for being faithful to the ethos. “Thank you for the fact that together we can change the world, change Poland for the better,” he added.
Pilgrimage of Working People to Jasna Góra Monastery
This year’s meeting of employees at Jasna Góra was held under the slogan “To You, Mother, we entrust the Fatherland and Working People”. Worker’s pilgrimages to Jasna Góra were initiated by Fr. Jerzy Popiełuszko – chaplain and currently patron of Solidarity – organizing it in September 1983 for the workers of Huta Warszawa.
In the following years, workers from various parts of Poland made pilgrimages to Częstochowa. The idea of Father Jerzy Popiełuszko turned into an annual, nationwide Pilgrimage of Working People, which always took place on the third Saturday and Sunday of September.
Main photo source: PAP / Waldemar Deska