Mościska, a small town in the Lviv region, Ukraine, is the cradle of the Polish Redemptorists (now the Warsaw Province) and the local shrine of Mother of Perpetual Help. After many years, the Redemptorists are returning to Mościska to carry out the pastoral ministry in the shrine, spread Marian devotion, and preach the Word of God through missions and retreats.
On Friday, 8 September 2023, the new Redemptorist religious community was solemnly introduced into the shrine with the participation of Msgr Edward Kawa, auxiliary bishop of Lviv, the local clergy and many of the faithful.
At the beginning of the celebration, the Bishop recalled the figures of the Redemptorists Fr Bernard Łubieński, now a servant of God, and Fr Władysław Ziobro, highly valued by the faithful, who made a strong mark in the history of Mościsko during the first and second periods of Redemptorist work there. Bishop Kawa expressed the hope that the new Redemptorist community would continue to serve the faithful who come to the shrine for the Eucharist, perpetual novena and Holy Confession. He also commended them to the care of Our Lady of Perpetual Help so that she may support them with her intercession with Jesus.
The Eucharist celebrated on the Feast of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary and the 22nd anniversary of the coronation of the icon of Our Lady of Perpetual Help, was attended by a large number of faithful, children from a Polish school, as well as nuns and priests from across the deanery. The Provincial Council of the Warsaw Province of the Redemptorists was represented by Father Sylwester Cabała, who thanked them for the kind reception of the Redemptorists returning to Mościsko.
Fr. Dariusz Paszyński, Superior of the Warsaw Province, met Msgr. Mieczyslaw Mokrzycki, Archbishop of Lviv, on 7 September and signed an agreement concerning the work of the Redemptorists in Mosciska. In an interview for the archdiocesan media, Fr. Paszyński recalled the historical context and spoke about the current mission of the new Redemptorist community in the Archdiocese of Lviv of the Latin rite.
He said that precisely 140 years ago, on 8 September 1883, the icon of Our Mother of Perpetual Help was introduced into St Catherine of Alexandria church in Mosciska. The icon was brought from Rome by the Servant of God, Father Bernard Łubieński. The Redemptorist community of that time was the first community in the Polish lands after St. Clement and his confreres were expelled from Warsaw in 1808.
Our main task in Mościska will be the shrine ministry – explained Fr. Dariusz – We will promote the cult of Our Mother of Perpetual Help in the area. Still, we may also organise retreats and parish missions because they belong to the charism of our Congregation. We look forward to this return and want to serve the Church in Ukraine as best as possible.