A Gift from Our Lady of Czestochowa for the Feast of Corpus Christi.
On Saturday May 31, the pilgrim icon of Our Lady of Czestochowa traveled from Chatfield, Minnesota to the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in La Crosse Wisconsin. The shrine is a place of pilgrimage that honors Our Blessed Mother under the title of Our Lady of Guadalupe, Mother of the Americas, the Star of the New Evangelization and the Patroness of the Unborn. A Memorial to the Unborn was dedicated at the shrine on December 12, 2008.
Winona, Minnesota is a picturesque city on the Mississippi River. Named after Princess We-Noh-Nah, daughter of Cheif Wapasha III, it is known as the stained glass capital of the United States. The Black Madonna was warmly welcomed during her busy visit to the Diocese of Winona from May 23 to June 2 due to the kind efforts of Raymond deSouza, who is Director of Evangelization and Apologetics for the Diocese of Winona and also works with Human Life International’s international mission.
On Wednesday, May 21, the welcome service started already at 5:15 pm in anticipation of the arrival of their wonderful Guest – Our Blessed Mother in the Czestochowa Icon. People were gradually streaming in, as they arrived at the church after they battled the local traffic coming from work.
On Wednesday, May 21st, after the morning Mass at Saints Peter and Paul Church in Naperville, Father Peter West renewed the “Act of Entrustment,” and Our Lady headed towards the IVF clinic only a few streets away. Mr. Włodek Obruchta was driving the Life Mobile with Our Lady around the IVF clinic in circles, while a group of people gathered around Father West who led them in a pro-life Rosary.
On Tuesday morning, May 20th, Our Lady of Czestochowa gracefully reached the parish of Ss. Peter and Paul in Naperville. Due to a slight delay, the faithful who had already gathered at the chapel next to the rectory to await Her had now spontaneously decided to go outside to welcome Our Lady personally. The Icon was delivered in the Life Mobile driven by Mr. Wlodzimierz Obrochta with his wife. One family waiting for Our Lady waved the Polish flag.
On Monday afternoon, May 19th 2014, the Icon of Our Lady of Częstochowa arrived at the American Parish of the Holy Cross in Batavia. She traveled there in Her Life Mobile because of the close proximity to Chicago. She was visible from a distance and attracted much attention. At times, She became a sensation particularly on the toll way.
After the farewell ceremony at the Polish Mission of the Cistercian Fathers in Willow Springs and upon embarking Her Life Mobile, Our Lady in Her Icon of Częstochowa went to the nearby convent of the Dominican Sisters’ Immaculate Conception Province in Justice, where the sisters run a home for the elderly. It was Sunday evening on the 18th of May, 2014 around 8:00 pm, when Our Lady was escorted by the Reverend Pastor Michał Blicharski, OCist., assisted by several other vehicles.
On Saturday evening of May 17th, Our Lady of Częstochowa, arrived in Her Life Mobile with the fluttering of the Papal, Marian, Polish, and American flags at the seat of the Cistercian Fathers in Willow Springs, IL. The Life Mobile stopped before the beautiful Shrine of Our Lady, the Mother of the Church – the so called “church on a hill.” Our Blessed Mother in Her Icon was surrounded by an escort of several Harley motorcyclists. The welcome ceremony was very solemn.
On Friday evening, May 16th, at 5:00 pm, the Czestochowa Icon, peregrinating across the world in defense of life, stopped to visit at St. Rosalie’s Church in Harwood Heights on the outskirts of Chicago. The Pauline Fathers serving at this parish came out to greet Our Lady; among them was the Reverend Pastor Tadeusz Olzacki OSPPE and Father Bogdan Olzacki OSPPE. The Icon was carried into the church in a procession and placed carefully in the sanctuary on a pedestal covered with a beautifully embroidered lace tablecloth.