On August 15, 2023, the solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, His Eminence, Cardinal Mauro GAMBETTI, OFM Conv., the Vicar General of His Holiness for Vatican City, presided over Mass at the shrine-basilica in the village of Kalwaria Pacławska, Poland. The event concluded a five-day patronal celebration of Our Lady of Calvary there.
In his homily, the cardinal said that “Mary reigns with her Son Jesus and distributes blessings and graces.” He prayed to Our Lady of Calvary to help us “throw away our defenses, trust God completely and accept the Love that wants to fully possess our lives.” He also added: “You, Mary, exalted the Lord: not problems, not difficulties, not fears, rather, for you, God was first and greatest in life. This is where the Magnificat comes from; this is where joy comes from: not from the absence of problems, which come anyway. Instead, joy comes from the presence of God who helps us, who is close to us. God is great and, above all, He gazes upon His little ones. God’s love has a weakness for us: God gazes upon His little ones and loves them.”
The faithful of Kalwaria Pacławska have been anticipating the feast of the Assumption since August 11. They took part in events at the shrine, and on the roadways of Kalwaria. They also and benefitted from the ministry of the friars in the confessionals.
The pilgrims listened to daily sermons from Friar Marek AUGUSTYN, from Rychwałd, Poland and from special guests, namely, the Most Reverend Mons. Jacek KICIŃSKI, Auxiliary Bishop of Wrocław; the Most Reverend Stanisław DOWLASZEWICZ, OFM Conv., Auxiliary Bishop of Santa Cruz de la Sierra, Bolivia; the Most Reverend Adam SZAL, Archbishop of Przemyśl, Poland; the Most Reverend Józef MICHALIK, Archbishop Emeritus of Przemyśl, Poland, and the Minister Provincial of the Province of St. Anthony and Bl. James of Strepar in Poland (Cracow) Friar Marian GOŁĄB.
The festive program also included musical concerts, including one entitled “Calvary Oritorio: Go Out to All the World” by Dominik LASOTA.
Friar Jan M. SZEWEK