Ah, Poland. When I was there in 1999, I was struck by the fact that other than in Rome, I have never seen more religious — obvious nuns and priests — out and about on the streets, taking public transit, and just participating in daily life. Krakow is one of my favorite cities in the world. There’s just something about the Polish people.
If you haven’t seen it yet, here’s a story about Polish President-Elect Andrzej Duda that makes you wonder what it would be like to live in a nation with a truly Catholic leader:
On the National Thanksgiving Day, which was established in late 18th Century to commemorate Poland’s patriotic struggle for independence, thousands of the inhabitants of Warsaw took part in an annual open-air Holy Mass, also massively attended by top state officials with the President-Elect Andrzej Sebastian Duda in person.
During the Holy Communion a sudden gust of wind blew off one of the consecrated Hosts from the chalice that was held by a priest giving the Corpus Christi to the gathered believers. Unseen by any of the participants, a small Host dropped on the ground and then driven by the wind rolled along the pavement for a several meters before It finally stopped in front of the kneeling and praying newly elected President Andrzej Duda. Having spotted the Holy Host rolling on the ground, the President spontaneously rushed to catch It with his hands and then strode up to the altar where he handed It over to the Cardinal Nycz, who was celebrating the Mass.
This unprecedented event was caught by the camera eye and could be observed on TV screens by millions of Poles all across the country.
Think about the typical narcissism displayed by ostensibly Catholic politicos, who haughtily present themselves to receive communion despite their public support of abortion or other non-negotiable issues. Contrast that with a man who is about to assume the highest office in the country who cares not a whit for decorum, jumping from his seat and stooping to scoop up a consecrated host, bringing the precious Body and Blood of Our Lord Jesus Christ back to the priest from whose ciborium the wind snatched it.
One can’t help but wonder if this were not so much an act of nature as a bit of divine providence – a chance for the world to see what real civic leadership looks like, in service to Christ the King.
Here’s a video of the event:
May God grant President Duda strong faith, great wisdom, and and many years.
Steve Skojec is the Founding Publisher and Executive Director of OnePeterFive.com. He received his BA in Communications and Theology from Franciscan University of Steubenville in 2001. His commentary has appeared in The New York Times, USA Today, The Washington Post, The Washington Times, Crisis Magazine, EWTN, Huffington Post Live, The Fox News Channel, Foreign Policy, and the BBC. Steve and his wife Jamie have seven children.