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Polish-American Congress Day" in New York - October 14th, 2007

September 25, 2007

As part of the annual observance of October as Polish American Heritage Month, Sunday, October 14th has been designated “Polish American Congress Day in New York,” according to Frank Milewski, president of the Downstate N.Y. Division of the Congress.

“It’ll be a day for solemn commemoration as well as celebration,” he said. The opening event will be a memorial mass scheduled for 11:30 a.m. at St. Stanislaus Kostka Church in Greenpoint, Brooklyn marking the anniversary of the gangland-style execution of Father Jerzy Popieluszko by Communist thugs in 1984

Rev. Popieluszko was the charismatic and heroic Catholic priest prominent in the movement that toppled the Communist regime which ruled Poland since World War II.

The events occurring in Poland created a chain reaction throughout Soviet-controlled Eastern Europe that led to the fall of the Berlin
Wall and to the eventual collapse of the entire Communist system.

Along with other Polish organizations from the community, the Polish American Congress will lead a march from the church to Father Jerzy Popieluszko Square in nearby McCarren Park at the conclusion of the mass. A commemorative service at the square will begin at 1:00 p.m

The day’s final event will be the Polish American Congress Awards Banquet to start at 3:00 p.m. at the Polonaise Terrace, 150 Greenpoint Avenue.

Selected to be this year’s organizational honoree is the Sea League of America (Liga Morska), one of the most active and visible organizations in the Polish American community of the metropolitan New York area. The goal of the Sea League is to continue and preserve the maritime traditions of Poland.

Individual honorees are: Msgr. Peter Zendzian, pastor of Holy Cross R.C.
Church in Maspeth and Msgr. Gregory Wielunski, pastor of Blessed Virgin Mary Church in Ozone Park. Both were elevated this year to the rank of monsignor by the Diocese of Brooklyn.

Dr. Elzbieta Wirkowski, Medical Director of Neuro ICU at Long Island’s Winthrop Hospital, joins Msgr. Zendzian and Msgr. Wielunski as an individual honoree.

Designated as this year’s Special Honoree is William C. Thompson, Jr.,
Comptroller of the City of New York.

Contact: Frank Milewski
(718) 263-2700 – Ext. 105