Stefan Wyszyński 1901-1981

B. Aug. 8, 1901, Zuzela (county Ostrów Mazowiecka). In 1924 he finished the religious seminary in Włocławek, 1925-29 studied canon law and social sciences at the Lublin Catholic University (KUL), in 1929 received his doctorate in canon law. From Oct. 1948 archbishop of Gniezno and Warsaw, primate of Poland; from 1953 cardinal. Arrested 1953, held in Rywałd, Stoczek, Prudnik, and Komańcza; released in Oct. 1956. In mid-60s, together with the Polish Episcopate, he made a gesture of reconciliation between the Polish and the German nation, addressed to the German bishops; this caused a hostile and violent reaction of the party and state authorities. Member of the Vatican Congregation of the Clergy and the Commission for the Revision of Canon Law Code, he took part in the proceedings of the Second Vatican Council. He played a major role in the election of Karol Wojtyła to the Papacy; in 1980-81 he acted as a broker between the “Solidarity” movement and the communist authorities. His works include: Katolicki program walki z komunizmem [“A Catholic Programme of Combating Communism”, 1937]; List do moich kapłanów [A Letter to My Priests”, 1969]; Listy pasterskie prymasa Polski 1946-1974 [“Pastoral Letters of the Primate of Poland 1946-1974”, 1975]; Kościół w służbie narodu [“The Church in the Service of the Nation”, 1981]; Zapiski więzienne [“Notes from Prison”, 1982]; Nauczanie społeczne 1946-1981 [“Social Teaching 1946-1981”, 1990]. D. May 28, 1981, Warsaw, a couple of weeks after the assassination attempt on John Paul II, and a few months before the introduction of martial law in Poland.


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