PILGRIM’S GUIDE With Saint John Paul the Great in Poland

Dear friends

We want to share with you the news about an upcoming publication by our Religious Family: a pilgrim’s guide to Poland following the footsteps of John Paul II in his native land.

We began with this project due to the particular relationship that our Religious Family has with St. John Paul II, and aiming at further making known his extraordinary person, following the footprints of the Saint prior His papacy.

Apart from including historic, geographic and cultural information, the guide offers in particular John Paul II’s words and actions related to each of the suggested places of visit. In this way, our guide can be useful not only in order to prepare a pilgrimage, but as an actual source of deeper knowledge of the life and teachings of the Saint, and especially for the pastoral with young people.

The next World Youth Day in Krakow 2016 is indeed a lovely chance to use the guide. Therefore, we are almost finishing its publication, bearing in mind the spiritual aspect that a pilgrimage of this kind should be marked by.

Here you will find a presentation of the guide where it is further explained what inspired us to create the guide and the guide’s uses. The text is available in Spanish, Italian and English and it includes photos in colour, maps, useful information, etc.

We would like to ask you to spread this piece of news as much as you can and to promote its purchase in those places where you perform pastoral activities: dioceses, churches, youth groups, schools.

To make an order or for any questions regarding the guide you can contact us at:

-Sister Maria del Pilar:

cel: +39 327 874 5319 (what’s app)

email: m.pilar@servidoras.org

-Sister Maria de Montserrat:

cel:+39 338 897 8569 (what’s app/viber)

email: sec.generalicia@servidoras.org


Dear Pilgrim,

You are about to start your journey following in the footsteps of Saint John Paul the Great in his homeland, Poland. We hope that these pages will be an instrument to thank the Lord for the gift granted to His Church and the world through the person of this great saint. You will travel to the places related to his life, a life that had the Holy Spirit and the Blessed Virgin Mary as its principal characters. We hope that through contact with the places you will visit, they will become a stimulus so that you also decide to be completely guided in your life for the love of God, to become a saint.

Presentation of the Pilgrim’s Guide

The present guide is born during a pilgrimage in Poland, in 2013, following the footprints of John Paul II, whose life gave us an eloquent testimony of the extraordinary richness with which is imbued his homeland. After visiting this great nation, its vast cultural and spiritual heritage, but chiefly the places related to the great leading figure of the Polish Pope, we though it important to create a guide to benefit others. Due to the trouble that non-Slav speaking pilgrims have to understand Polish, we considered it necessary to provide information in other languages. We worked with dedication to publish  simultaneously the guide in Spanish, Italian, and English.

The main goal of this work, as stated in the Introduction, is “helping pilgrims find in each place the spiritual legacy of Pope John Paul the Great”. A vast number of his quotes, highlighted for easy reading, connect each place with John Paul II and gather his valuable teaching.

Undoubtedly, Saint John Paul II is the more emblematic Polish leading figure of our times. Poland is proud to have given the Church a Saint Pope that was face with harsh historical times for his country. Indeed, this profoundly catholic land particularly suffered persecution, but managed to hold tight to its ideals when faced with ideologies that sought to make Poland give up its most genuine Christian roots, its culture and faith. From his place, Karol Wojtiła knew how to help in the defence of these values. The aim of the guide is making known those places connected to his vast work (as a student and worker) in favour of these principles, but above all his work as a shepherd of the souls, as a priest and afterwards Archbishop of Krakow.

To this end, the guide includes information of the cities in which he lived, studied, worked, taught and practised his fertile priestly and episcopal ministry. It also includes many references to the visits made to his country while being a Pope. This way, the guide provides a description of the main places related to this great national and universal leading figure, John Paul the Great of our times.

In addition, to complete this spiritual journey, in each of the places the most important figures and saints are mentioned, telling a brief story of their lives. There is also information about some of the cities the pilgrims might visit because of the relevance they have for the Polish people and that are also connected to Saint John Paul II. The footnotes provide information that complete the main text, with references sites that can be consulted.

An itinerary of visits is suggested, following a chronology according to John Paul II’s life. Pilgrims can easily use the guide for the itinerary they consider proper. To this end, the most important cities are highlighted in different colours.

In order to show pilgrims their way in the city, a civic reference is included under each of the places suggested. Maps of the places are available, which can come in very handy. Also, some of the cities and monuments described are illustrated with pictures.

Finally, we would like to point out the relevance of the guide in view of the next Krakow 2016 – World Youth Day. We think it will be of great use for those willing to combine the World Youth Day with a pilgrimage, within the framework of Saint John Paul II’s spirit, who loved young people so dearly and from Heaven still intercedes for them.


The content of this pilgrim guide is organized according to the cities in Poland which were most related to the life of John Paul II.

Its main purpose is to help the pilgrim encounter the Spiritual Legacy of this great Pope at each of the places. There are text boxes throughout the entire guide containing quotes to accompany each place with memories that the saint has left us, especially in his works Memory and Identity, Gift and Mystery, and Rise, Let Us Be On Our Way as well as some of his homilies, which contain a heritage of teaching and truth that enlighten future generations.

The guide also contains biographical information about numerous Polish saints. Many of these saints played an important role in the life and formation of Saint John Paul II. Some of them were beatified or canonized by the Polish Pope.

In addition, historical and artistic information is provided regarding the places to visit, which are closely linked to the profound faith of the great Polish people.



Historical Context of Wadowice 15
1 – Municipal Museum – Historic Dairy Farm 16
2 – Family Home of John Paul II 16
3 – Basilica of the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary 17
4 – Town Hall and Boys School 20
5 – Historic Bakery of Karol Hugenhuber 20
6 – Market Square – John Paul II Plaza 21
7 – Sanctuary of Saint Joseph – Monastery of the Carmelite Fathers 21
8 – Church of Saint Peter the Apostle 26
9 – Headquarters of the Infanty Regiment 27
10 – Cultural House 27
1 – Debniki Neighborhood – House of John Paul II in Kraków 30
2 – Salesian Church of Saint Stanislaus Kostka 31
3 – House of Jan Tyranowski 33
4 – House on Szwedzka Street 35
5 – House on Komorowskiego Street 35
6 – The Rhapsodic Theater 36
7 – Pod Lipkami House 37
8 – Church of Saint Michael the Archangel and Saint Stanislaus, Bishop and Martyr 37
9 – Cathedral Basilica of Saint Stanislaus and Saint Wenceslaus 39
10 – Seminary in Kraków 54
11 – Dean’s House and Museum 55
12 – Pontifical University of John Paul II 56
13 – Church of Saints Peter and Paul 57
14 – Church of Saint Joseph and Monastery of the Bernadine Nuns 57
15 – Basilica of the Holy Trinity of the Dominican Fathers 58
16 – Basilica of Saint Francis and Monastery of the Conventual Franciscans 60
17 – Archbishop’s Palace of Kraków 62
18 – Kraków Philharmonic Hall – Catholic House 71
19 – Błonia and Jordan Parks 71
20 – Jagiellonian University – Collegium Novum 72
21 – Saint Anne’s Collegiate Church – Remains of Saint John Cantius 74
22 – Basilica of the Visitation of the Virgin Mary 75
23 – Market Plaza – Rynek Głowny 76
24 – Church of Saint Adalbert 77
25 – Saint Mary’s Basilica – Kosciól Mariacki 77
26 – Basilica of Saint Florian 80
27 – Monastery of the Carmelite Fathers 84
28 – Rakowicki Cemetery 87
29 – Sanctuary of Saint Brother Albert – Ecce Homo Church 88
30 – Church of Saint Joseph in Podgórze 91
31 – Sanctuary of Divine Mercy in Kraków – Łagiewniki 92
32 – John Paul II Church and the “Do not be afraid” Center 95
33 – Old Bicarbonate Factory “Sołvay” 101
34 – Zakrzówek 102
35 – Nowa Huta 104
36 – Cistercian Abbey of Mogila 107
37 – Salt Mines of Wieliczka 107
38 – Benedictine Abbey of Tyniec 108
39 – John Paul II International Airport 110
1 – Church of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary 112
1 – Sanctuary of the Mother of God of Jasna Góra 124
2 – Stations of the Cross at Jasna Góra of Jerzy Duda Gracz 134
1 – His Ministry with the Youth and Formation of the Laity 138
2 – Shrine of Our Lady of Fatima in Zakopane 141
X – LUBLIN 143
1 – The Cathedral of Lublin 144
2 – Trinity Tower 146
3 – Market Square 147
4 – The Dominican Monastery 147
5 – The Royal Castle and the Chapel of the Holy Trinity 148
6 – Kraków Gate 149
7 – Catholic University of Lublin (KUL) 149
8 – Majdanek Extermination Camp 153
1 – Saint Stanisław Kostka Church – Blessed Jerzy Popiełuszko 163
2 – Cathedral of Warsaw 171
3 – Royal Castle 178
4 – Archbishop’s Palace of Warsaw – Borch Palace 178
5 – Church of Saint Anne 179
6 – Convent of the Uruline Sisters 181
7 – Library of the University of Warsaw 181
8 – Presidential Palace 182
9 – Piłsudskiego Square or Square of Victory 182
10 – Museum –Collection of John Paul II 186
11 – Convent of the Congregation of Sisters of Our Lady of Mercy 186
12 –Pawiak Prison Museum 187
13 – All Saints’ Church 188
14 – National Temple of Divine Providence 189
Shrine of Our Lady of Licheń 191
Shrine of Our Lady of Warmia 198
Stations of the Cross of Cardenal Wojtyła 203
Useful Sites for Preparing the Pilgrimage 212
Apostolic Journey to Poland, Tuesday, June 15, 1999 215


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