Thursday, September 22, 2005

First entry about Częstochowa


Today I would like to write to you some things about Częstochowa - very important city nearby which I live. Mostly very important from historical point of view. But first look at the map of Silesian Voivodeship and find a placement of the city I want to tell you bit more today marked by a big black ring while a little black ring marks my home-town which isn't marked on the map at all because it is too small:

Bad luck if you forgot where Silesian Voivodeship lies within Poland. In this case you have to go back to my entries from July 2005 inside this blog and check it.
Now a bit history:

There was once a settlement on the Warta river, just on the route from the region of the Little Poland (Małopolska) through Silesia to the Great Poland (Wielkopolska). The settlement was soon promoted to the status of town by King Casimir the Great. By this historic decision Prince Ladislaus of Opole (Władysław Opolczyk) founded here the Monastery of Paulite Fathers and donated the Holy Icon to them. Six centuries ago the town was entrusted to the care of the Mother of God. From that time on, monarchs and their subjects, knights as well as common people have made a great many pilgrimages to Holy Mary Shrine in Częstochowa, the Shrine of the Queen of Poland. Thus Częstochowa has rapidlly become famous all over the world.
Look at two pictures beneath - on first you can see general overview of Paulin's monastery in Częstochowa, on the second you can see icon of Mary, mother of Jesus. I will write to you soon some more info about history of monastery and the icon.

In the 19th century the city of Częstochowa was among the most developed ones in Poland. New factories, houses, and schools were then built. Soon, the slender spire of the Protestant church, domes of the Russian Orthodox church and Moresque decorations of the synagogue became visible in the city landscape. Częstochowa was the first city that granted its Honorary Citizenship to Holy Father John Paul II. Also, Częstochowa was the first city in Central and Eastern Europe to be honoured by theCouncil of Europe with the prestigous awards, such like the Honorary Flag of Europe, the Plate of the Europe Council, as well as finally the PRIX DE L’EUROPE prize.
On the picture beneath you can see John Paul II visiting Częstochowa during one of his pilgrimiges to Poland. Apart from Monastery and Holy Icon Częstochowa is famous in Poland because during Swedish invasion on Poland in XVII century (1655 year) called "Swedish Flood" it was the only place that managed to defend the enemy thus inspired the rest of nation to fight and finally Swedes became beaten and forced to go out of Poland. Mr Sienkiewicz (Polish XIXth century Nobel Prize Winner in Literature for "Quo vadis") wrote another books-so called "Trilogy" about these times and his books are still very popular and readable among Polish people.

Częstochowa is an important academic centre. Thousands of young people have the opportunity here to get higher education. Small and medium size enterprises are thriving in the city and they are ever more and more prepared to compete on European markets and worlwide. The city takes care of its infrastructure and environment protection.
We are proud of great number of well-known artists living in the city as well as the national heritage which have been gathered in Częstochowa city through centuries. Likewise, we pride ourselves on great many people born in Częstochowa which are now scattered all over the world, the people who have recently been our welcome guests at the 1-st World Congress of Częstochowa People to be held in our city.
The city is surrounded with picturesque, rocky hills with river valleys, all that located in the scenery of the Jura Upland and with the tower of the “Jasna Góra” Paulite Fathers Monastery easily distinguishable in the beautiful landscape. “Częstochowa is a good city”, Holy Father John Paul II once said.
I invite you to Częstochowa, the city where every visitor will be welcome with our traditional warm Polish hospitality.
to be continued:)


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