Holy Cross Parish’s 85th Anniversary Celebration
WARE, MA – Holy Cross Parish, Polish National Catholic Church, observed prayerfully and thankfully her 85th anniversary of organization on May 19, 2013 with a High Mass of Thanksgiving celebrated by Father Senior Fryderyk S. Banas, pastor, assisted by Father Robert Koerber and senior altar servers, Cassandra and Nathaniel Masse at 11:00 am. The Anniversary Word of God was preached by Father Senior Banas titled: Unto Thee we built a Temple, which for us became a treasure, Pouring gifts of faith and courage, In it is our hope forever. The Chopin Choir with Evelyn Mongeau, organist, offered appropriate hymns in Polish and English at the Mass. The parish was established on April 28, 1928. A souvenir photograph of attendees was taken on the steps of the church edifice.
In the church hall, a pre-dinner was served with snacks and refreshments. At 1:00 pm the program for the occasion took place with a word of welcome by Francis Trzepacz, chairman, after which Wayne Masse assumed the role of master of ceremonies. The American and Polish anthems were sung. Invocation was offered by Father Robert Koerber. A sumptuous dinner was served by Young Caterers.
Immediately after dinner, an Anniversary Program took place. Wayne Masse introduced the members at the head table, while Father Senior Banas recognized individually all guests. Recognition was given to the sons and daughters of the organizers of the parish at this time and honored with the presentation of corsages and boutonnieres. The 13 honored were: Theodora and Edwin Sojka Sr., Phyllis Uzendowski, Boleslaw Adamczyk, Phyllis Laska, Anthony Zawalski, Genevieve Jaworski, Helen Michalski, Edwin Szczepanik, Stephanie Podbelski, Pauline Gagnon, Daisy Benjamin and Ellen Mierzewski.
Nathaniel Masse presented the meaning of the Church hymn: “Tyle Lat My Ci O Panie”, “Through the Years unto Thee, O Lord”, with fervor and devotion. A moment of silence followed honoring the deceased organizers and all parishioners who throughout the years were called to eternal life. The principal Anniversary Message was given by Father Randolph Calvo, pastor of the Holy Name of Jesus Parish, South Deerfield, which was most inspirational, informative and uplifting. To have some diversification and also participation of all attendees, all sang the favorite Polish song “Jak Szybko Mijaja Chwile” “How Quickly Flies Ev’ry Moment” utilizing all verses. This was enjoyed by all and sung with such great feeling of love and pride.
Closing remarks were given by Father Senior Fryderyk S. Banas, pastor, extending words of appreciation to the Anniversary Committee, participants in the program, Parishioners and Friends in attendance. He mentioned that this parish is a vibrant parish whose members are committed to Jesus and to the principles of the Polish National Catholic Church as espoused by her organizer, the late Prime Bishop Francis Hodur. The Holy Spirit guided and strengthened the founding members and their pastors, so that the work of the Lord and purpose of this church might be realized. They found in this church love, compassion and understanding of our Lord Jesus Christ; they found in the person of Prime Bishop Francis Hodur, the answer to their spiritual, moral, patriotic, administrative and ethnic needs. The Polish language in the liturgy of the church was also a contributing factor they desired and found, and very much so, religious freedom and liberty.
Benediction was given by Father Randolph Calvo, after which the church hymn: “Tyle Lat My Ci, O Panie” “Through the Years Unto Thee, O Lord” was sung and ended this beautiful and holy occasion.
Each attendee in the festivity was presented with four favors: a red ribbon bookmark with the 2nd verse of the church hymn, a coaster with gold imprint of the church, souvenir booklet and a treasure chest with two chocolates: one with a Polish flag and the other with the number 85 on it.
Many thanks to the following members of the anniversary committee for the splendid job they did: Francis Trzepacz, Lisa Koss, Evelyn Mongeau, Frank Moryl Jr., Patricia Bradley, Phyllis Laska, David Czech, Eugene Kulas, Gerry Skaza, Paul Laska and Nancy Plankey.