St. Casimir Roman Catholic Church

Buffalo / Kaisertown, NY

Masses: Lord’s Day 10am Holy Days: 7pm 1st Friday: 8:30am with Sacred Heart Devotion

1st Friday Adoration: 9am-1:30pm 1st Friday Confessions 8am and 12:30pm

Lenten, May, June, October, November devotions Sundays at 9:30am

For Christmas, Holy Week, Easter Sunday see www.facebook.com/stcasimirbuffalo

Signature Celebrations: Children’s Tradition Celebrations; Bilingual Polish Hymn singing; full-sense, Catholic worship

Praying in the Domestic Church (See CELEBRATIONS button).

Info Center: Fridays 9am-2pm 716-824-9589

Polish spirituality celebrates every season with a time-appropriate hymn, revealing a profound mystery of each particular feast. Embracing this musical calendar in English and the original Latin or Polish is a hallmark of worshiping at St Casimir’s Church. Lyrics for congregational participation were published by the Rector, Fr Czesław Krysa in a collection entitled, Heritage Hymns: Polish American spirituality in ritual and song, 2015, marked below Polish text with English translation with the actual number from the hymnal as [HH, n]. Liturgies and devotions alike, dig into this treasury of ultimate meaning. As a uniquely Polish Psalter (song book), they capture the mystery of human emotions transfigured by divine virtues of faith, hope, and love, and experienced in the four Gospels. Come and sing out these Heritage Hymns with heaven’s angels!

Lent

Ash Wednesday burning of palms. Do penance. Dust you are and to dust you shall return.

Gorzkie Żale

The passionate, stirring, and inspiring “Bitter of Lenten Lamentations” are chanted at St Casimir Church each Sunday of Lent in English with Polish segments at 9:30am.

They were first celebrated in the Church of the Holy Cross in Warsaw, Poland, some 100 years before George Washington was President of the United States.

If you have never participated in this Lenten sung meditation on the Lord’s Passion and Execution, come and immerse your soul in the extreme love Jesus has for us. He loves us to death…and beyond.

CHOPIN’S LOVE

Chopin’s heart is enshrined in a monument inside this Church of the Holy Cross.  The was his beloved church where he served as organist.

POLISH SPIRIT

Bitter Lamentations depict how Poles are not foreign to suffering. They identify with the Suffering Lord, for historically, Poland’s neighbors have tried to extinguish the nation, and laid it in ruins, time-and-time again, as here in Nazi-bombed rubble of Holy Cross Church, which first sang these Laments.

Opening Meditation

Bitter sorrow, lamentations, *
Wreathe my soul in contemplation.
For the gift of Your salvation:
Shower tears in meditation.
Sun and stars fade into shadows.
Darkness veils all light celestial.
Angel Hosts in deepest anguish,
Share His agony so endless.
Rocks and tombs are breaking open,
Freeing souls once long forsaken.
Why such fright, such desolation?
Overcoming all creation?
Nails, thorns, and dreadful scourging
Stun the heart with speechless urging.
Wake me Jesus from complacence,
Cure the wounds of my indifference.
Cleanse and heal my shattered soul.
In Your blood, Lord, make me whole.
One short step into Your Passion,
Cools the flame of desperation.

LIFT UP YOUR HEARTS!

After the Nazis systematically bombed and dynamited the entire Polish Capital, the raised hand of Jesus of Holy Cross Church’s famous monument,  called from the ruins: “Lift up your hearts”.  This event gave the underground resistance, the greatest Nazi Germany had encountered from Europeans, courage and hope.  A photo of the presently restored Basilica Church appears at the head of this page.

Gathering the fruits of the fast for the needy, called “Casimir Cups”

Blessing of favorite mugs for collecting forty days of family donations. Following the example of our Patron of the Poor depicted over the main door of the church, who distributes food (a loaf of bread) and alms (coin) to needy families, the elderly, and homeless.

Cup blessing on the Feast of St Casimir, Sunday, March 4, 2018 at the 10am Mass.

Egg Writers Retreat

An annual time set aside to meditate and practice the ancient family art of pisanki or wax-written Easter eggs with renowned specialists and practitioners.

ALM WEAVING SEMINAR

Morning: Traditional Polish pussy willow flower-branch palms
Afternoon: PolAm woven palm fronds, including the prized Crown of Thorns palm. Pussy willow flower branch palms

A Fast for the Eyes — The Final Sundays of Lent

Veiling images in purple is recommended in the most current Roman Missal. It was never dropped, just made optional. Removing what is familiar from sight, means we are to look for and contemplate Jesus in each other, those closest to us, but especially anyone in personal or economic need.

 

Feast of St Casimir, Prince of the Poor

Blessing mugs for “gathering the fruits of the fast” for St Casimir’s food pantry and hospitality table. Takes place on the first Sunday in March at the 10am Mass.

Participants are encouraged to bring their favorite cup, and after blessing it is placed in a central place in the home (kitchen). Monies saved from giving up favorite foods or actions are placed in the cup. Sacrificing these donations and sharing them with needy Kaisertown families is a sign of joining Jesus in his 40-day fast in the desert.

The song characteristic of St Casimir’s feast day celebration is Daily, Daily Sing to Mary — Już od rana rozśpiewana [HH, 71]. He was buried with a copy of this hymn in his hands, indicating it was the Poor Prince’s favorite. St Casimir enjoyed singing as is depicted on one of the stained glass windows in the nave as a troubador, with a harp as King David. This Jewish King wrote the 150 “Plalms” or “songs” used during Old Testament worship in the temple. See outside, front cover of the “Heritage Hymns” collection for a stunning photo of this magnificent window.

Pussy Willow procession Palm Sunday

BYOB –bring your own branches (!). Hymn: People, my people — Ludu, mój Ludu [HH, 30].

JERUSALEM! OPEN YOUR GATES AND LET IN THE KING OF GLORY!

 

Footwashing Holy Thursday

Hymn: Where Charity and love prevail.

JESUS SAID, “AS I HAVE DONE SO MUST YOU DO ALSO.” 

Children’s faithful flower procession

Bring small flower pots, servers sound clackers and walk with Jesus from trial to trial and prison— “The Passover of the Lord has begun!” Hymn: Sing my tongue the Savior’s Glory — Pange lingua gloriosi.

Stripping of the altar

Hymn: In the Olive Garden — Ogrodzie Oliwny [HH, ]

Seven Church Pilgrimage

For Adoration at the Repository until midnight. Hymn: You walked hot desert sands — Mój Mistrzu. [HH, 94 ].

Informational prayer and meditation guide “Seven CHurch Pilgrim Steps” available.

Adoration Repositories: gather to contemplate Jesus’ trial and imprisonment

Good Friday Adoration of the Cross

Hymn: Holy Cross — Krzyżu Święty [HH, 31]

HOLY SATURDAY: Vigil at the Lord’s Tomb

WEEP ALL YOU ANGELS — PŁACZCIE ANIELI [HH, 109].

 

EASTER FOOD BLESSING

EASTER SUNDAY OF THE RESURRECTION

Resurrection Procession: children bring flower petals and bells

Hymn: [HH, 37] Christ the Lord — Wesoły nam dzień dziś nastał

“CHRIST IS RISEN!” EGG CRACKING CONTEST”

In Louisiana it’s called “pocking” from the French word for Easter Pȃques

DIVINE MERCY: ADORATION OF THE BLESSED SACRAMENT

The Greening of Easter

The Descent of the Holy Spirit on the Apostles: Pentecost

May Crowning

Honoring Mama Mary by chanting the Litany of Loreto and the oldest-extra Scriptural prayer to Our Lady.

Hymn: [HH, 64] All Creation — Chwalcie Łąki

Jesus Walk Thru Place of Origins — Corpus Christi Procession

3pm Citywide witness walk in Buffalo’s Historic Polonia District, from St Stanislaus B&M Church 123 Townsend St, to the PolAm church of Corpus Christi on Clark St.

BLESSED BE FOREVER — BĄDŹŻE POZDROWIONA [HH, 45]

Sacred Heart Love

Chanting the Litany of the Sacred Heart at Mass.

LORD, REMEMBER US — NIE OPUSZCZAJ NAS JEZU [HH, 76]

Our Lady of the Herbs and Harvest

Encountering God is a full, five-sense experience. One of the finest examples is during the annual August 15 Our Lady of the Herbs and Harvest Festival. Participants prepare fragrant bouquets of herbs including dill, mint, rosemary, basil, etc to which they add field flowers and even shafts of grain. These naturally bountiful gifts from heaven are blessed through the intercession and prayers of the First Lady of Heaven’s Harvest, Mama Mary reveals a deep, human love by pointing the way to Jesus as in the Black Madonna icon.

Every year on Aug 15 at 6:30pm believers gather to chant the stirring strophes of the Byzantine Marian “standing” prayers, extolling the role of the woman-mother in salvation history. Rose incense is used, as well as rose oil, the latter to anoint all the women present.

Bells ring in the tower and hands of young ones proclaiming a joyful song of praise to God for the Woman of Nazareth. Fresh ritual loaves are blessed and shared after Mass with herbal cheese and refreshing teas. The evening is an inspiring feast for the eyes, mouth, ears, nose, and hands. Consider attending and encounter God and the Saints in a full-sense experience.
This celebration opens the door to sit down and join in Table Talk with Mama Mary, annually Aug 18-26 at 7pm, 10am on Sundays (see below).