At 12:45 PM on December 29, 2012, an enthusiastic group of kolednicy or Polish Christmas carolers began singing old time carols on the steps of St. Stanislaus Catholic Church, a historic Washington County parish that was founded in 1889 by early Polish immigrants to Texas. The weather was windy and cool but overall it was a beautiful day for the 5th annual Kolędy Polskie in Chappell Hill. St. Stanislaus’ pastor, Father Jozef Musiol, a native Polish speaker with a great singing voice, helped Mike Addicks, Dr. Jim Mazurkiewicz, Mike Kurtin and Brian Marshall lead the group of about 75 singers of all ages.
The kolędy procession was led by a star bearer and a couple dressed as Mary and Joseph complete with the baby Jesus. The group also included angels, shepherds, kings, beggars, Santa Claus, the grim reaper and an extinct Polish bison, the ever popular trouble-making turon. This years kolędy music was provided by a talented group of musicians that included Brian Marshall, Jakub Marshall, Michal Marshall, Lawrence Wisnoski, Frank Motley, Charlie Brossman, CJ Jozwiak, James Mazurkiewicz, Kevin Simmons and little Carter Sutphen
After singing in front of the church, the group boarded a big yellow school bus that took them to sing for five different families. The first stop was a visit to the Cone family at Chappell Hill Sausage, their family business. The Cones provided the group with delicious food and plenty of wine and other drinks. This was followed by visits to the Kaminski, Faterkowski and Mazurkiewicz families where the group sang and the families responded with lots of great food and liquid refreshments for the kolednicy. A group photo was taken at the original home of Lorenz & Anna Mazurkiewicz who came to the Chappell Hill area from Weglewo, Poland.
At each home, the group sang traditional Polish koledy including Gdy Sie Chrystus Rodzi, Pojdzmy Wszyscy, W Zlobie Lezy and Wsrod Nocnej Ciszy, a few English language Christmas carols and even a couple verses of Siwy Kon, Pije Kuba and other traditional Polish songs. The last stop for the bus was a visit to Tommy Lindsey who looks forward to the groups visit each year.
After unloading from the bus at the church, the kolędy group set out on foot to sing for the Moszkowicz and Mikolajchak families where more delicious refreshments were waiting including a big pot of czarnina. As the sun set, the group drove to St. Stanislaus Cemetery for a candle light vigil at the cross of John Kmiec. Prayers were recited and more kolędy was sung in the cemetery. After a long day, everyone headed to Jozwiak’s Store to finish the evening with good fellowship, food, drink and dancing as the musicians continued to play old Polish songs throughout the evening. Dr. Jim Mazurkiewicz and Barbara Meleski joined the other musicians at the store.
Kolędy Polskie In Chappell Hill is a beautiful day of celebration of our Polish history and heritage and will be a lasting family memory for all those that participated.