Letter of the Father John Paul II to the Poles just after his election

Collection: Watykan cz. 3
Available languages: PL, EN
Archive description
Archive description
Reference code: AAW SPP/II/17.23/64-64v
Title: Letter of the Father John Paul II to the Poles just after his election
Date: 1978-10-23
Size and medium: 1 karta; papierowy dokumnet archiwalny
Creator's name: Archiwum Archidiecezjalne Warszawskie
Repository: Archiwum Archidiecezjalne Warszawskie
The document entitled "Letter of the Holy Father John Paul II to the Poles". A message addressed by the Pope to his compatriots just after his election. The typescript of 23 October 1978, signed in print.
A week after his election as Pope, John Paul II addresses to all Poles worldwide. He points to the history of Poland in the last decades before the election, namely World War II, when Poland was occupied by Germany and the USSR, and over thirty years of communist rule in Poland. According to the Pope, those difficult years contributed to the growing importance of the Polish Church for the universal Church, and indirectly to the election of a Pole as Pope. John Paul II also points to the service of Primate Stefan Wyszyński as the source of the election of a Pole as Pope. He particularly recalls the Primate's imprisonment by the communist authorities in the years 1953-1956 and the Jasna Góra Vows of the Nation, i.e. religious ceremonies during which the Polish nation was given over to Mary. The vows of Jasna Góra also started the programme of the Great Novena, pastoral and prayerful preparation for the celebration of the 1000th anniversary of Polish Baptism in 1966.
John Paul II calls on all Poles to take common care of their homeland. He points out that he misses Poland, recalling the words of ''Pan Tadeusz'' (English tittle: Master Thaddeus), Poland’s national epic poem by Adam Mickiewicz. He expresses his desire to come to his homeland to celebrate the 900th anniversary of the martyr's death of St Stanislaus, the patron saint of Poland, scheduled for May 1979. Eventually, due to the opposition of the authorities of the People's Republic of Poland (St Stanislaus symbolised resistance to the abuse of secular power), John Paul II arrived in Poland in June 1979.
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