Polish in America and John Paul II

Today I’m a guest, and I’m warning you: there’ll be many links in here.

I’m a guest @Polish Mama on the Prairie.

I “met” her through Bloggy Moms community more than a few months ago.

She is so devoted to being Polish that surprises even me. I don’t know so much about Polish cooking as she does. I’m not THAT involved in discussion about Polish politics, culture, and Polish history as she is. It amazes me.

She left Poland when she was a little girl, but she never stopped loving this country. Her blog is all about being Polish in America, raising kids in bicultural family, cooking Polish food, talking about Polish history, etc.

Her last two posts were about John Paul II (Polish Pope).

Letter to Heaven: Dear Beloved Polish Pop.

I’m gonna use them to talk about something else in this post.

I’m gonna talk (or showing my pictures) from the event that happened last Sunday in San Francisco.

April 30th John Paul II was beatified.

May 1st, I witnessed a Mass celebrating his beatification in San Francisco. I was a volunteer photographer for this event. Great experience for me as a photographer and in many different ways.

It happened thanks to Caria who is really deep involved in Polish culture here in Bay Area:

SF Krakow Sister Cities Project,

The Polish Arts and Culture Foundation,

Polish Cultural Center of the Pacific

and I shouldn’t forget about my friend who actually thought about me when Caria asked him about some fellows photographers he might now and who would be willing to volunteer for this event.


I’m not totally done with editing my pictures, but I’ll share with what I’ve already done. Hope you like at least few of them 🙂 They are not perfect considering my equipment, but as somebody used to say: it’s not the camera… it’s the photographer… 😉


Tomasz didn’t post his pictures, yet, but I had the chance to see them the same day on Sunday… and they were FANTASTIC!!!


Go to his gallery of amazing photos from last Sunday.

More pictures on my weebly website.

Ok, time to spend a little bit time with my Cranky Pants.

hugs from my corner!


8 responses to “Polish in America and John Paul II”

  1. 🙂 Thank you sooo much for being a guest on my blog! The reactions from people so far about your experience, writing, and recipe have been very positive. I’m so glad we met each other. You really inspire me.

    Love the pictures of the Mass for our Son of Poland. I had no idea there was any Polish population really in California. I will have to tell my brother, who is living further north on the West Coast and feeling very ethnically isolated as the only Polish man for MANY miles around him. He has been feeling the desire to move south to California lately anyway, perhaps this will pull him closer to a decision.

    As usual, your photos put mine to shame, you are very talented.

    HUGS! i Na Razie…. Kasia


    1. thank you for hosting me! it was great experience I really like all those comments on you blog. They were(are) really helpful. My husband was a little bit upset that I wrote it about him not liking the polish food, so I had to explain that I was trying to write that post as for somebody who is born in American, rised here as well, married to a American and who doesn’t have to deal with that cultural differences. Who’s food was all life the same, and who doesn’t have to be explaining: “what that is” or “how could you eat that”. for example my husband hates the smell of sauerkraut. I didn’t know abou that. I LOVE IT. I can just eat it from the jar with a fork. So one day I was doing that when he came and told me something about this food what hurt my feelings. In Poland everybody eat sauerkraut and if somebody doesn’t like it the last thing is for them to say something bad about it or about the people eating it. It just doesn’t happen in there. So being raised on totally different food that Americans, coming here and being constantly under attack of questions like : “how can you eat that?” “OMG that smells so faul”, makes me feel bad sometimes. I know he didn’t mean to hurt me, he just honest, but I told him, that in this case I wish he would hide his honesty and shut up 😉 So, he does that since then 😉
      I’m really happy we’ve “met”, as well 🙂

      I kind of knew about the Polish community in Bay Area but I didn’t know it’s soo big.
      If your brother feels isolated he definitely should move up here…. In San Jose we’ve got very big Polish community and Polish church…
      hugs back


      1. I think you got some great comments as well. Thanks again for doing it.

        And I can definitely relate to the idea that while you are eating something you grew up and love, someone saying something like that would hurt your feelings. I get that often as well. Mmm, I adore herrings in sour cream but everyone else thinks it’s disgusting. I have learned to start thinking that I was raised with a wider palate than others. Simple as that. And if someone’s feelings get hurt with that statement, I say that it’s not as hurtful as someone saying “Ewww! How can you eat that crap?!” about the foods I love.

        I am sure your husband doesn’t mean to hurt you when he says that. There is a cultural difference for sure, which I am reminded of daily. But in the end, you don’t marry for culture or similarities, you marry for love. 🙂

        Again, so glad we met! Big hugs from me!

        Btw, I sent my brother the link to your post and he is seriously considering it. I hope for his sake, he finds what he is looking for, which is the same thing I always have been looking for. A community.

        Big hugs i na razie!


  2. What a great blog! I loved your guest post a lot.

    I am English and my dziadek was Polish (he was from Susiec) and I although I have some knowledge of Poland and my heritage I really want to know more – actually everything! I know a little about Polish cookery, snippets of Polish culture and traditions as my dziadek taught me quite a bit and am also trying to get to grips with the Polish language as I can’t speak Polish but I am determined to one day.

    My dziadek fled Poland during WWII to the UK (his father and sister were killed by the Nazis and he had to leave his mother and other sister behind). He saw such terrible atrocities that no one really knows exactly what he experienced completely as he never really told us everything – just small bits of information. He very sadly passed away 18 months ago and I have so many old photos of Poland and so many unanswered questions. I just feel that part of me is missing if you understand what I mean?


    1. thanks for stopping by.
      you know, it’s weird how that works… because when I had lived in Poland I didn’t actually cared about Polish culture, polish food, polish holidays, polish customs…. You know, it was just my everyday life… who pays attention to that (lol) it’s just happening. right.
      and coming here and talking to the people who never have gone to Poland, or to people that have some Polish heritage, or are Polish immigrants I’ve started to think about it more often.
      I was getting to the point were I kind of felt like I’m no Polish anymore, but I’m not American as well. Like I’m somewhere in between. My daughter birth added to that feelings because I realized that WE ARE BILINGUAL and BICULTURAL family and I want to keep it that way. I want my kids (we’re planning to have more than one) to know a lot about Poland, I want them to speak Polish, I want them to know their grandparents and cousins…
      But I’m aware that raising kids is hard and raising them in bi lingua/cultural environmet is twice that hard. At least at the beginning. Later in their lives if they decide they don’t want to have anything in common with Poland or they don’t want to speak Polish… I’ll be sad… but at least I won’t say: “I didn’t try”.

      btw, I totally understand that your gradfather didn’t want to talk a lot about his experience. Have you read those books?!:


      You know there is not many people that survievd all of that and after all wrote a book. I bet it was very hard for him to just think back about those days. Maybe he thought that nobody should live through something like he did (and that’s the truth), and he wanted to protect you from those images. If you know what I mean.
      I’m hoping to go to Poland soon. I miss some of those places I grew up and I wish I could photograph write about them here on my blog.



  3. Great article and pictures !
    Super ze ma Pani tylu Polakow w swoim otoczeniu. Pozdrawiam z Montrealu.


  4. […] Me and a talented Polish photographers from Bay Area. We spent May 3rd, 2011 together shooting Polish Mass Celebrating Beatification of John Paul II. […]


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