Provincial Delegation in Belarus 
Mother Province: Province of the Immaculate Mother of God in Poland (Warsaw) 

Franciscans have been present in Belarus since the 14th century. An example of their valued spiritual support is shown by the Blessed Martyrs, Friar Herman STĘPIEŃ and Achilles PUCHAŁA, who gave their lives to save their parishioners in Pierszaje, Belarus, during the Nazi occupation. In June of 1943, the two friars were arrested, tortured, shot and their bodies burned. After the fall of the communist regime, a number of small friar communities were opened in Belarus.

Currently, the Delegation has thirteen solemnly professed friars, four simply professed friars, three friaries and two filial houses.

Grodno: Blessed Mary Queen of Angels Friary and Parish
The friars first arrived here in 1635, but they were dispersed during the Polish-Swedish War of 1665. From 1922 to 1927, St. Maximilian Mary Kolbe worked at the publishing house in the Grodno district where he published the Knight of the Immaculate magazine. In 1989, the Conventual Franciscans returned to Grodno and in 1994, established a community. Part of the old friary in Grodno houses classrooms for teaching catechism. The friars live in an apartment purchased by the Order. They use the old rectory as well. The friars, together with the Schoenstatt Sisters of Mary, take care of the friary and parish and lead various pastoral activities.

Halshany: St. John the Baptist Filial House and Parish
St. John the Baptist Church in Halshany was erected in the 15th century. The friary originally belonged to the then Province of Poland. In 1686, it was transferred to the Province of Lithuania. In 1770, the church was rebuilt in the baroque style. In 1990, the Conventual Franciscans returned to the church in Halshany, where they currently evangelize and carry out charitable work throughout the area.

Svislach: St. Francis of Assisi Filial House and Parish.
In the early 1990s, Friar Franciszek NOWAKOWSKI was put in charge of organizing the parish and building a new church in Svislach. On May 6, 2018, the church was consecrated under the leadership of Friar Walery SZEJGIEREWICZ. Today the friars serve the parish and conduct various pastoral activities.

Ivyanyets: St. Anthony of Padua Friary and St. Michael the Archangel Parish
A Franciscan presence was established in Ivyanyets on January 27, 1702. However, due to various difficulties, the friars were unable to continue their service there. In 1939, Friar Hilary PRACZ was appointed the first Guardian and Pastor in Ivyanyets. He was accompanied by Friars Achilles PUCHAŁA, Celestyn GACEK and Wojciech FRANKIEWICZ. During World War II, several friars were martyred for the Catholic faith, including the aforementioned Blessed Friars Herman STĘPIEŃ and Achilles PUCHAŁA. In 1990, during the changes in Eastern Europe following the fall of the Soviet Union, the friars returned to Ivyanyets, at the invitation of the Most Reverend Tadeusz KONDRUSIEWICZ, then Titular Bishop of Hippo Diarrhytus. The community consisted of Friars Wieslaw GŁĘBOCKI, Tomasz LACH, Roger ŚWIDERSKI, and Kajetan RUBIN, who became the first pastor of the Conventual Franciscan parish. Friar Władysław SOKOŁOWSKI oversaw the renovation of the friary and the church. Today the friars are involved in various pastoral activities at multiple parishes.

Udziela: Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary Friary and Parish
In 1642, Josef KORSAK built a wooden church and friary in Udziela for the friars. On November 24, 1851, according to the Julian calendar of the Russian Empire, the friary was suppressed. On July 1, 2000, the Most Reverend Władisław BLIN, then Bishop of Vitebsk, Belarus, handed the friary and parish back to the friars. The National Center of the “Knight of the Immaculate” was established at the church. The first Conventual Franciscan to return after the suppression was Friar Mirosław KOPCZEWSKI, followed by Friar Waldemar KUJAWA, who came to assist him. The City of the Immaculate in Belarus is located here.

Franciscan Missionary Center
General Secretariat for Mission Animation