The last Mass held at St. Casimir Church in Cleveland was held on November 8, 2009. Starting the following Sunday, parishioners and supporters met outside the locked church to pray.
On Sunday July 8, 2012 the 139th and final street service was held. St Casimir Church will reopen on Sunday July 15, 2012.
The St Casimir group was the first to meet outside the church and never missed a week despite Cleveland's dramatic weather. They inspired 4 other church communities (St. Emeric, St. Patrick, St. Wendelin and St. James) to begin meeting in the street the following summer.
Now their prayers have been answered and St Casimir Church will reopen with a Mass at 11:30AM on July 15th. The loyal group which was exiled outside for so long will be able to enter their beloved church again.
Many believe this to be a miracle delivered to them by the Blessed Virgin as Our Lady of Czestochowa.
Our Lady of Czestochowa icon
Michael Klymiuk-Wieczerski told how he was visited by the Blessed Virgin in a dream and she told him "Do not leave me."
Blessed John Paul II visited St Casimir in 1969. In 1985 a monument was installed that dedicated this church to the men and women of the Gdansk shipyards who were murdered (1970) in the streets standing up to the atheist communists.
Solidarnosc - Solidarity at St. Casimir Church
Joe Feckanin, one of the leaders of the group, said, "These people were not AFRAID. John Paul told the Poles 'Be not afraid' and they carry it in their hearts along with their Catholicism where they have sacrificed their blood and lives. They follow the Gospel of Jesus Christ. They have prevailed."
Congratulations to the loyal faithful of St Casimir Church and their supporters from other communities who prayed the rosary, sang songs and never missed a week.
Praying in English and Polish
The Irish Brigade - Irish supporters of St Casimir Church