Polish Church apologises after right-wing Mass in cathedral

Bialystok Cathedral

Church authorities in eastern Poland have denounced nationalist views and apologised after an extreme-right organisation held a Mass in a regional cathedral, reports AP in Crux.

Fr Andrzej Debski, a spokesman for Church authorities in Bialystok, said the apology came after believers complained that a Mass was held in Bialystok Cathedral for the extreme-right National-Radical Camp, or ONR, celebrating its 82nd anniversary on April 16.

Founded in 1934, the ONR was built on Italian fascism and has promoted anti-Semitic ideas.

The Bialystok Curia “apologises to all who feel hurt by the behaviour of ONR members in Bialystok Cathedral,” said a statement posted on its website. “The Curia assures that the Church in Bialystok region is non-party and nationalism is alien to it.”

Fr Debski said the cathedral rector consented to the ONR anniversary Mass there, led by a priest of their choice, but the rector had failed to seek the approval from his superiors.

The ceremony has also been criticised by human rights activists, lawmakers and Facebook users.

The priest, Fr Jacek Miedlar, known for his radical views, has been banned by the Church from making any public statements.

Prosecutors are also investigating the situation for possible violations of hate-speech laws.

Polish law bans public expression that insults a person or a group due to “national, ethnic, racial, or religious affiliation or the lack of a religious affiliation.”

Photo: Wikipedia commons

FULL STORY

Polish church apologises after Mass held for far-right group (AP/Crux)

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