Important Message from Polish Falcons of America

Fr. Joe at the 2014 Mass in honor of Our Lady of Czestochowa.

Fr. Joe at the 2014 Mass in honor of Our Lady of Czestochowa.

We are deeply saddened to inform you of the passing of Rev. Canon Joseph Sredzinski, our PFA National Chaplain of 34 years. We received notification this past weekend from his family stating Fr. Joe passed away while on a trip to Poland with classmates. We do not know any details of his passing at this time. The family is making arrangements to bring his body back to the U. S. for burial. We will send funeral arrangements as soon as we receive them from the family. We ask that you keep Fr. Joe in your prayers.

Rev. Canon Joseph Sredzinski of Uniontown, Pa. was ordained in 1970 following the completion of his priestly studies at Saints Cyril and Methodius Seminary in Orchard Lake, Mich. One who in his own words was committed to “holding fast to the heritage and culture bequeathed to Polish Americans by those who had great faith and hope in crossing the ocean to hurdle the obstacles they faced,” Rev. Sredzinski was named National Chaplain of the Polish Falcons of America in 1981. He was appointed by the Board of Directors to be the eleventh National Chaplain of the Falcons since the office was created in 1912.

In 2009, Rev. Sredzinski played a key role in working with Bishop David Zubik of Pittsburgh to establish the special Mass to honor Our Lady of Czestochowa at St. Paul Cathedral in Pittsburgh. The Mass has become an annual event, occurring each August and attracting more than 700 hundred parishioners.

Updates will be posted to the PFA website at http://polishfalcons.org.

May he rest in peace. Niech spoczywa w pokoju. Czolem.

Remembering Poland’s Wojciech Kilar (1932-2013)

Remembering Poland’s outstanding pianist & composer Wojciech Kilar (1932-2013)

From the Consulate General of the Republic of Poland in Chicago

Wojciech Kilar, Poland’s renowned pianist and composer of classical music and scores for many films, e.g. Roman Polanski’s Oscar-winning “The Pianist” and Francis Ford Coppola’s “Bram Stoker’s Dracula,” died on Sunday, Dec. 29, 2013 in Katowice.

Wojciech Kilar is considered one of the co-founders of the highly regarded Polish Composers’ School. He cooperated with many Polish and foreign film directors, including: Roman Polanski, Krzysztof Kieslowski, Andrzej Wajda, Kazimierz Kutz, Krzysztof Zanussi, Jane Campion and Francis Ford Coppola.

Kilar composed scores for more than 100 masterpieces of the world cinema. His music for “Dracula” won him the Best Score Composer award from the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers. He also received the French national film award César for Roman Polanski Oscar-winning “The Pianist.”

For his outstanding contributions to the Polish culture he was awarded, among others, Poland’s highest decoration, The Order of the White Eagle from Polish President Bronislaw Komorowski.

Wojciech Kilar was born in 1932 in Lvov, a then-Polish city, now in Ukraine. He spent his childhood in Rzeszow and Krakow in southern Poland before moving to Katowice in Poland’s region of Upper Silesia, where he lived most of his life and which he considered his “little homeland.” He was also deeply attached to Czestochowa where he often celebrated his birthdays.

Wojciech Kilar graduated with top honors from the State Music Academy in Katowice in 1955. He launched his career in the late 1950s. From the early 1960s he co-founded, together the renowned Krzysztof Penderecki and Henryk Mikolaj Gorecki, the Polish avant-garde school and a new approach to musical composition in contemporary music called sonorism.

“Over the past half a century Wojciech Kilar’s symphonic, sacral and film music accompanied us nearly every day. Sometimes we are not aware that a well-known motif or theme was written by Wojciech Kilar. He was a widely admired artist,” said Polish President Bronislaw Komorowski.

“Wojciech Kilar was a leading world-class composer. His works are characterized by quality, diversity and perfection,” said Bogdan Zdrojewski, Poland’s Minister for Culture and National Heritage.

“Poland has lost one of the most individual voices in 20th and 21st-century music,” said Jerzy Kornowicz, Chairman of the Polish Composers’ Union.

Wojciech Kilar will be buried in Katowice on Saturday, Jan. 4, 2014.

More at the Consulate’s website: www.chicago.mfa.gov.pl
Facebook: Consulate General of the Republic of Poland in Chicago
Twitter: @PLinChicago