Events Family Stones Heritage Store Heritage Walks Stories 2008 Celebration

Kashubian Pioneers Remembered
at Special 150th Anniversary Mass in Wilno
Sunday, August 3, 2008

St. Mary's Church was filled to capacity with several hundred people of Polish Kashub origin who gathered to celebrate the gift of faith given them by their ancestors. What was most remarkable was that 150 years and six generations later, the descendants of the Polish Kashub pioneers celebrated mass in their native languages of Polish and Kashubian. Msgr. Ambrose Pick of Barry's Bay, a fourth generation descendant, presided over the mass assisted by Fr. Raphael Glofcheski, also a descendant.

Msgr. Pick spoke eloquently of the hardships of the early pioneers who left their parents, families and friends to come to Canada and start a new life. He referred to a rich heritage and said:  "We are really filled with thanksgiving today. This is a very important milestone in our history. We have been here for six generations now.  We have held onto our faith.  We have held onto the traditions of our ancestors. We know where our roots are and we know that we have a very great dignity."

"Not only are we God's people, but we are Kashubs and we have a rich tradition behind us... without roots, we don't grow. With roots, it helps us to appreciate what we have inherited and to carry on that tradition."

Photo left: Catherine Bloskie [left] and her daughters Mary [middle] and Theresa [right] did the readings in Kashub.
Photos below show choirs at mass.

The combined choirs of St. Mary's and St. Hedwig's churches sang in Polish and Kashub and made truly heavenly music.

One of the important symbolic parts of the mass was the procession at the beginning with some of the parish's young people carrying a statue of the The Madonna of Sianowo, Queen of the Kashubs to place on an altar - and all the altar  cloths were beautifully decorated with Kashubian embroidery, worked on for many hours by Zosia Kosinski and helpers: Catherine Bloskie, Theresa Prince, Esther Yantha, Rose Marie Docherty, Joyce Lorbetskie, Dottie Stevens, Teresa Pecoskie, Bozena Szymkov, Elizabeth Radzikowska, Angela Cyfko, Halina Urbanowicz, Monica Burchat, Bernadette Prince and students: Janice Blank, Theresa Bloskie, Jeremy and Jessie Hudder, Lauren Radey, Lean Recoskie, Cindy, Megan, Natasha, Emily, Breanna & Courtney Hudder.

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