More than 120 works by fifty artists from the Vera Icon Community of Christian Artists can be admired at the Świadectwo exhibition at the Jesuits’ Gallery in Poznań. The exhibition was inaugurated on 29 October with the participation of Father Emmanuel Parvez from Pakistan and Bishop Damian Bryl. It is the first such initiative of the Pontifical Association to Aid the Church in Need (PKWP), organized in the capital of Wielkopolska. The event is aimed at collecting material resources for the legal support of Christians in Pakistan. "We would like to thank you for the courage to share your experience of faith and the testimony of the artists' solidarity with those who are persecuted because of their faith in Christ. This is our gift to Christians in Pakistan," said Bishop Bryl. The person behind the exhibition, Tomasz Zawal from the KPWP’s Regional Office in Poznań, drew attention to the symbolic title of the exhibition: "On the one hand, it is a testimony of faith of artists from various Polish cities. On the other, it highlights the attitude of solidarity with Pakistanis going through the plight of religious persecution." The works on display vary in technique and medium (paintings, graphics, sculptures and photos). Among them are the works of Fr. Tomasz Biłka OP, a painter, poet and art theorist, who is also the pastor of the community. Friar Emmanuel Parvez from Faisalabad diocese in Punjaba, Pakistan, was the special guest of the vernissage. A lecturer in biblical and dogmatic theology at the Diocesan Seminary in Karachi. He is also engaged in activities aimed at improving the living conditions of the local Pakistani community - both Christians and Muslim. His intervention shed light on the situation of Christians in Pakistan. Parvez thanked Polish artists for their gesture of solidarity and support for the local community. The event was being organized on the occasion of the 10th Day of Solidarity with the Persecuted Church, celebrated on Sunday, October 28th. Under the patronage of  Archbishop Stanisław Gądecki of the city of Poznań, Świadectwo will be on display daily until 16 November. Admission is free.
In November this year there are 25 years since the first materials of the Correspondence Bible Course were published in the Jesuit Publishing House WAM. From the beginning the course has been run by Fr Zbigniew Marek SJ The course itself is aimed at helping to better understand the content of God's revelation. The addressees of the course are interested in the Bible and its place in the life of a Christian. Participation in the course consists in reading the books of Scripture indicated in the course materials. The materials contain introductions and comments necessary for this reading, which help to understand the faith of the Church more fully. The course materials are available in both paper and electronic versions. About 10,000 participants have benefited from the course so far. Among the participants there are doctors, lawyers, customs officers, policemen, prison guards and prisoners themselves. One of our confreres also took part in it before joining us today! Representatives of other Christian denominations also took part in the course. It is also worth mentioning that in cooperation with the participants of the Correspondence Biblical Course and on the basis of their statements, three scientific papers have been prepared and published.
One hundred and fourteen Jesuits went to Rostkov, the birthplace of Stanislaus Kostka, to worship the young saint and to celebrate the Eucharist there. The pilgrims of the Jesuit Novice, who died 450 years ago, were greeted by canon Adam Chmielewski, the parish priest in Rostkow. The Mass was presided over by the Superior of the Northern Poland Jesuit Province, Fr. Tomasz Ortmann, and the sermon was delivered by Fr. Jacek Olczyk SJ. The preacher spoke about the submissiveness of St. Stanislaus Kostka to his Lord, God, and at the same time about his stubbornness in the face of various adversities, about his tenacity to fulfill what he discovered in his heart. Fr. Jacek encouraged the Jesuits to keep listening to him and to look at their attitudes towards young people. "How do we treat them? Can we sustain the spirit they have in them? Can we take care of it or, on the contrary, do we have such old habits to erase young people who consider themselves wiser and blow away what was burning in their hearts? Jacek asked each Jesuit two questions: In the last year, did you discover in yourselves some inspiration of the Holy Spirit, for which you had to fight, face difficulties in order to surrender to him? Have you recognized the inspiration of the Holy Spirit in someone else, and have you supported it, have you nurtured it, or do you still have this sensitivity in your heart? The Jesuits gathered around the Eucharistic Table at the Shrine of St. Stanislaus Kostka in Rostków, prayed for the fruits of the Synod dedicated to youth held in the Vatican, for educators of children and youth, for lay co-workers, for the Homeland, for sick confreres, for novices, for works in progress.
The Polish editors of Pray as you go prepared unusual arrangements of the rosary prayer. Part 1, Joyous Mysteries #roadway The main association to the arrangement of these mysteries is a typically pilgrimage line-up, i.e. vocal and guitar. It is about conveying simplicity through a modest cast, which in combination gives a dozen rosaries, which are very easily recited on the way. Part 2, Luminous Mysteries #intimacy Jazz Quartet is a rather unusual idea for prayer, but introducing an incredibly intimate atmosphere, which manifests itself in the vocalist's very precise treatment of the text and melody, the rhythmic cooperation of drums and bass and the harmonies of the piano that fill it all. This set of non-accidental people naturally led to the creation of a kind of story, which is supposed to bring us closer to a better experience of these mysteries. Part 3, Sorrowful Mysteries #reflection The three-voice male choir with a soloist singing in the church immediately evokes associations with the medieval Gregorian chant or organum period in music. These mysteries are intended to stimulate reflection on the time of prayer. Sorrowful mysteries are the longest of all, because the message they contain must resound, and this takes time. Part 4, Glorious Mysteries #area After the Resurrection, God opened Heaven for people, creating a place and space for them to live together in God's Love and Glory. The musical arrangement of praiseworthy mysteries through the classical saxophone quartet and vocalism was to illustrate in a way this space, which in no way absorbs, but invites to contemplate God's Love.
In Kalisz (Poland), nearly 100 Jesuits (fathers, brothers, clerics and novices) celebrated Saint Joseph. Saint Joseph is a special patron of the Polish Jesuits, because in 1950 to him was entrusted the fate of both Polish provinces of the Society of Jesus in the face of the threat of banning the Order by the communist authorities. The superiors of that time also took an oath in which they promisd to undertake a visit to the sanctuary in Kalisz every year, if the Order's activity in Poland would not be interrupted. Also this year, on September 12, Jesuits from both Polish Provinces of the Society of Jesus came in large numbers to Kalisz to thank God for the fact that the Jesuit Order was able to continue its activities throughout the communist period. Representatives of all communities and novices were present at the ceremony.  They thanked for the newly created works and for all the graces received last year. They asked for the further care of St. Joseph, not only of what they do in Poland, but also in Denmark and Ukraine.  "We are giving more and more to Saint Joseph," said Father Provincial Tomasz Ortmann. During the concelebrated Holy Mass presided over by His Excellency Bishop Lukasz Buzun OSPPE, we heard during the homily delivered by the Provincial Father Jakub Kołacz SJ, important words about gratitude and about the radical and tenacious following of Christ. At the end of the Mass, the Bishop thanked the Jesuits for their service and emphasized that the greatest works of gratitude were created in the Church.
In Poland, the Year of St. Stanislaus Kostka lasts and new jubilee initiatives are still being undertaken. On the 12th of September began the journey of the relics of St. Stanislaus Kostka to Jesuit churches and communities. A special reliquary was brought from Stara Wieś and solemnly introduced to the Jesuit church in Kalisz, where for many years there was a novitiate. The ceremony was attended by a delegation of novices from Gdynia with their Novice Master, father Piotr Szymański. From Kalisz the reliquary was transported to Warsaw, to the Sanctuary of St. Andrew Bobola, where on September 18, on the liturgical memory of Stanisław Kostka, children and youth prepared a special program. Then he will visit, among others, St. Stephen's parish in Mokotów, the Jesuit church in Piotrków Trybunalski and in Święta Lipka. Later on the relics will go to the Sanctuary of Our Lady of Grace in Świętojańska Street in Warsaw and to the Jesuit church in Toruń, where a prayer meeting for young people from the whole diocese is planned.