Daily Archives: January 13, 2016

First Attempt to Silence Popieluszko, December 26 1982

First Attempt to Silence Fr. Jerzy Popieluszko

Introduction by Paul Hensler:  Father Popieluszko was wrapping a few meager Christmas presents in his apartment on December 13, 1982, the first anniversary of martial law. Small gifts to be distributed to the families of political prisoners and the few shut-ins who lived close to his church. The Secret Police could silence Popieluszko, stopping his monthly masses either directly by building up criminal charges against the priest, or by stealth, by demonstrating that the he was in so much personal danger the Church should transfer him. Perhaps to Rome, perhaps to the countryside, far away from workers from intellectuals and from Solidarity. They decided on the third option, scare him, show the Church that he was in grave danger. They delivered an early Christmas present to Father Jerzy on December 13th, a half-stick of dynamite, tied to a brick, wrapped in Christmas paper and thrown through Father Popieluszko’s apartment window. Father Jerzy was not hurt as the bomb landed behind his bookshelves and went off with a dull thud.  The only damage was a burn hole in the carpet and a lot of smoke. “In the beginning of 1982 we really didn’t think the priest was in danger”, says Karol Sadurski of the Huta Steel Mill, “But the first attack on Father Jerzy’s life in December 1982 and that was a first warning sign that his life was in peril. We took turns watching him, and guarding his flat – that was the moment we decided he needed protection.” Holy Mass for the Fatherland on […]

December 26 1982 1

[opening remarks] We stand, at the altar of Christ united in the prayer for our Country and those who suffer for her most. In the month of December especially, pain, suffering and hope are intertwined. Pain – because the anniversaries of our brothers and workers whose lives were taken in 1970 and 1981 are fresh in our minds. Suffering – because many of our brothers and sisters remain behind prison gates. Hope – that in spite of everything, we will work for the true good of our Country and we shall feel that we are its managers. Hope, even betrayed, never dies. Joy – because here God Himself comes down to man as a child in a manger in Bethlehem, to give strength to the people of good will in their battle for good, freedom and justice. We place all these concerns and our joy on Christ’s altar asking that He transforms them into the grace of enduring in the hope of victory of good against evil. We especially join our hearts with those, interned a few day ago and arrested today, who have sent us the following greetings: Holy Mass for the Fatherland on December 26 1982 was celebrated by Fr. Jerzy Popieluszko who delivered the sermon. In these days of Christmas we are particularly united by the firm bond of human identity. In spite of being apart, our hearts and thoughts are with you present here with us, and we concelebrate this Holy Mass and the common pra- yer to God for happiness […]