A standing room only crowd gathered at Our Lady of Czestochowa Catholic Church on Sunday, May 1, 2011 to commemorate the Beatification of Pope John Paul II with a special Mass celebrated by Bishop Vincent Rizzotto. The Mass was concelebrated by Fr. Leszek Wedziuk, pastor of Our Lady of Czestochowa, Msgr. Eugene Francis and Fr. Janusz Ihnatowicz. Deacon Antoni Rudnicki also assisted at the Mass.
The beloved Polish Pope was beatified by his successor, Pope Benedict XVI at the Vatican on the Feast of Divine Mercy. John Paul II had a deep devotion to his fellow Pole Sr. Faustina Kowalska and to the Divine Mercy devotion identified with her. In August 2002, in Lagiewniki, Poland where Sr. Faustina lived and died, John Paul II entrusted the entire world “to Divine Mercy, to the unlimited trust in God the Merciful.”
Over a million pilgrims flocked to Rome Sunday to watch Pope John Paul II move a step closer to sainthood in one of the largest Vatican Masses in history. The beatification was the fastest in modern church history, taking place six years and 29 days after John Paul’s death. John Paul II is universally credited with helping bring down communism in his native Poland with support for the Solidarity labor movement, accelerating the fall of the Iron Curtain.
Below is a slideshow of the beautiful Mass at Our Lady Of Czestochowa Church.