Saint Casimir Catholic Church
People at the Reopening and First Mass
On Sunday July 15, 2012 over 1,000 parishioners and supporters packed the church for the reopening.
Dan Hanson of ClevelandPeople.Com documented, with video and photos, St Casimir Church before it was closed. When they discovered the group meeting in front of the Church every week, they covered that too. As St. Casimir Church in Cleveland opened up again, Dan Hanson gave his thoughts.
Mr. and Mrs. Joseph A. Drobot Jr., President of the Polish Roman Catholic Union of America
Wojtek Flezar was one of the loyal parishioners who met and prayed the rosary outside the closed St. Casimir Church in Cleveland every week for 139 weeks. On the day the church reopened he told of how the Blessed Virgin saved his life and helped open St Casimir Church again.
Our Lady of Czestochowa icon
Walter was an inmate in the Bergen-Belsen Nazi concentration camp and pulled the plug on the Bishop's microphone at the closing Mass
Joe Feckanin was another in the core group that met every week. On the day the church reopened he told of how the community came together and the special people who made it happen.
Ohio State Rep Bill Patmon and Joe Feckanin
Joe Hoffman had never been in St Casimir Catholic Church. Yet he met outside the Church every week and prayed for it to reopen. He told why he got involved in the movement, Solidarity and about his first visit inside the Church doors.
Joe Hoffman with St Casimir Solidarity shirt
Ben Stefanski and John Niedzialek
John Niedzialek and his family have a long history at St. Casimir Parish. He told what it meant to have the church reopen after 139 weeks standing outside in all kinds of Cleveland Weather. Pope John Paul II said 'Be Not Afraid' and that was their motto.
Ben Stefanski told some of the history of his family and how his mother and father met and started 3rd Federal Savings from the neighborhood around St Casimir Church
Stanislav Zadnik was another of the core group who met outside every week. He said that tenacity kept them going and that they knew that justice was on their side.