Dziennik Chicagoski -- October 05, 1893News from St. Michael Archangel Parish of South Chicago (Correspondence)
October 2, 1893. Last Friday, September 29, we observed our Patron Saint's Day in this parish, during which the Most Reverend P. Feehan, Archbishop of Chicago, administered the Sacrament of Confirmation to many parishioners, both young and old.
Already on Thursday, several priests from Chicago had arrived to hear confessions of the many faithful who gathered here. Again on Friday, several more priests arrived, and, from early morning until noon, solemn services were held, during which hundreds of the faithful partook of the Holy Communion. Our parish societies, both military and civil, received the Communion.
Those who saw the great numbers of people who took the Sacrament during 2these two days must appreciate the vastness of the task accomplished by the priests who were kind enough to come here to receive the pious confessions of so many hundreds of people. In addition to attending to their duties in the confessional, several of the visiting priests delivered inspiring sermons.
For your labors in behalf of our salvation and our spiritual elevation, Reverend Fathers, please accept the parishioners' sincerest thanks, best expressed in the time-honored Polish words: "Bog zaplac"[May God repay you]. We, more people, cannot repay the good you have done us--only God can reward you properly.
Early in the afternoon, most of the parishioners gathered at the church, from where they were to proceed to the Cheltenham railroad station to welcome Archbishop Feehan. The procession was led by our military societies and a band, followed by the other church societies, the rest of the parishioners, and outsiders, among whom were many people of other nationalities. The 3grand marshal of the parade was Francis Rydzewski.
After a short wait, the train bearing the Archbishop, accompanied by the Reverend Adolf Nowicki, our pastor, arrived, and he was triumphantly escorted to the beautiful rectory. At the rectory, he changed to his pontificial robes and proceeded to the church, which, although it is a large one (86 by 150 feet), was literally filled to capacity with people from our own and neighboring parishes, who had come to witness the solemn ceremony and to see the splendid welcome we had prepared for our Archbishop.
The Archbishop administered the Sacrament of Confirmation to a hundred and thirty-five individuals, both young and old. (The older people were these who have recently arrived from Russian or Prussian Poland. The difficulty of fulfilling religious duties there is well known to us. Many people age and die without having seen a bishop.)
After the confirmation rites, Archbishop Feehan visited our school, which 4consists of ten classrooms, each especially decorated for this occasion by the Sisters of the Holy Family of Nazareth. He visited all of the classrooms and everything pleased him, especially the kindergarten, where the little children sang, recited, and performed various drills to his immense pleasure.
In the upper grade classes, through which he was conducted by Ignace Machnikowski, the pupils welcomed the Archbishop with speeches in Latin, French, German, and English, and with choral music, in which they were trained by our capable organist, Wiedeman. It may be mentioned here that we are always justly proud of the beautiful choral music during services in our church, for which fact we owe our gratitude to the organist Wiedeman, whose untiring efforts have produced a well-trained choir.
After the Archbishop had visited the school, he was escorted by Cadets to the rectory, where supper was served. Following this, Father Nowicki accompanied him back to the city.5
The priests who honored us with their presence were the Reverends S. Kobrzynski, Vincent Barzynski, Joseph Barzynski, E. Siedlaczek, John Radziejewski, Stanislaus Radziejewski, Moneta, of Lincoln, Nebraska, our South Chicago neighbors A. Snigurski, B. Pawlowski, Ratz and Van DeLaar. The fugitive from Russian persecution, Reverend Matthew Krawczunas, of Lithuania, was also present.
So solemn a day as this will long remain in our memories; our hearts will long be filled with gratitude to the visiting priests who, where our faith or nationality is concerned, do not spare themselves, but exert their utmost strength for our well-being. Finally, I cannot but give due credit to the one who is responsible for everything that has happened, that can happen, here. That we have a large, beautifully furnished church, with three Gothic altars, two confessionals in the same style, a beautiful pulpit, stained-glass windows, a sacristy abundantly stocked with ceremonial robes, a clock and four large bells in the belfry, a beautiful rectory encircled by a lovely garden, and that the Church and school affairs are managed with utmost competence, is due entirely to our pastor, the Reverend 6Adolf Nowicki. His ant-like activity and capable leadership have given the parish everything it possesses--its beautiful church, its school, the ample parish hall, and most of all, love and fraternal harmony throughout the community.
This worthy priest does not spend all his time in praising God; he is an ardent Polish patriot, of which the national celebrations held in this parish amply testify. In addition, he is a real father to his parishioners, for he always, and especially in times such as these, does what he can to help those of us who meet with misfortune. He helps us by giving good advice, by calling upon those of us who are richer to give to the poor, and by organizing committees to help the unemployed find work. Last Sunday, our pastor called a mass meeting, which he conducted very skillfully. We chose a committee of seven, which will present a petition to the mayor, asking for work for our unemployed. In addition to this, we discussed political questions in connection with the forthcoming elections. But the most important problem considered was that of representing our parish as well as possible in the Polish Day celebration. Every one of us, rich and poor alike, 7will be there, for when our pastor appealed to us, and especially to the richer members of the parish, it was unanimously decided that the poorer people must be aided so they too can participate in the parade, which will bespeak us to the whole world.
And so, dear editor and readers, everything is all right with us, and we owe it all to our pastor, Father Nowicki.
Long live Polish Day!
Long live our pastor, Father A. Nowicki!
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