Tag: wycz kowski

The Church’s liturgical calendar is complex when it comes to saints. The calendar has only 365 spaces, about 52 are preempted annually by Sundays and there are other solemnities (e.g., Christmas). There are some saints whose feasts are observed universally throughout the Church because of their broad-ranging significance, e.g., Sts. Peter and Paul or St. Boniface. There are saints whose observances are memorials and others who have optional memorials. There are also some saints whose commemoration is limited to the liturgical calendar in a given country. It’s not that they are insignificant; it’s that, in a Church that has had more than 2,000 years of producing saints and limited calendar space, they might be more significant in certain places. This occasional series will introduce saints on local calendars who might not otherwise be known to Catholics in the United States. Why not tell us what you think of it in the comments section?

Many saints started life in the military: St. Martin, St. Ignatius, St. Camillus de Lellis. Add to that list St. Albert Chmielowski, sometimes called Brother Albert. Don’t confuse him with St. Adalbert, the 10th-century martyr who is patron of the Czechs and Poles. 

Brother Albert was born in 1845. In the 19th century, there was no Poland: the country had been divided by the Austrians, Prussians and Russians so that, from 1795-1918, it was erased from European maps. Brother Albert was born in that part of Poland seized by the Russians.

His father, who worked as a customs inspector on the border, died just short of Albert’s 8th birthday; his mother, just short of his 14th. His maternal aunt raised him. At age 10, he went off as a cadet to school in St. Petersburg. Later, he would pursue his education in a polytechnic school near

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