In 2025, the Archdiocese of Częstochowa, Poland, will celebrate the 100th anniversary of its foundation. In preparation for this event, the icon of Our Lady of Częstochowa (the Black Madonna) made a pilgrimage to the parishes of the archdiocese. The theme of the pilgrimage was: “Mary! Save the Love and Lives of Our Families.”

On Thursday, July 4, 2024, the icon was taken to the friary and church in Radomsko, Poland. To commemorate this jubilee, Pope Francis sent a special letter expressing his hope that this prayer initiative would spiritually strengthen all families, since they are the way of the Church and the future of the world. He wished that the Holy Family of Nazareth: Jesus, Mary and Joseph―the icon of every human family―might help all of the parish communities deepen their commitment to fulfilling their vocation and mission in society and in the Church.
The clergy and faithful of the Parish Church of St. Lambert solemnly handed over the icon of Our Lady of Częstochowa to the Conventual Franciscan friars. The icon was then carried into the church in the company of, among others, the Most Reverend Antoni Józef DŁUGOSZ, Auxiliary Bishop Emeritus of Częstochowa and the Minister Provincial of the Province of St. Anthony and Bl. James of Strepar in Poland (Cracow), Friar Mariusz KOZIOŁ. Friar Mariusz then celebrated Mass with the diocesan and religious clergy.
The Guardian of the friary in Radomsko, Friar Dariusz SOWA, welcomed the image of Mary with the words of St. Francis of Assisi: “Hail O Lady, Holy Queen, holy Mother of God, Mary….Hail His Palace! Hail His Tabernacle! Hail His Dwelling! Hail His Robe! Hail His Servant! Hail His Mother” (Cf. A Salutation of the Blessed Virgin Mary FF 259). He also entrusted all those present to Mary, including those who pray and work there every day: “Look upon us in this holy time of visitation. Cast your motherly gaze upon our whole life, with its ups and downs. Cast your gaze upon our parish, all the priests and the faithful, the church and the Conventual Franciscan friary. Mary, wherever you go, you always carry the Holy Spirit, for you are filled with Him. We confidently ask you to bring the Holy Spirit to us. Revive and renew this Franciscan community. Revive and renew this place. May all who come here feel at home. May all who come, and will come here, leave touched, strengthened and transformed by the grace of your Son.”
The event ended at midnight, with the friars in Radomsko celebrating Mass and the faithful praying for new priestly and religious vocations.

Friar Jan M. SZEWEK