Holy Synod of the Polish Catholic Church

On 18 June 2013, delegates of the Polish Catholic Church gathered in Konstancin near Warsaw for their Holy Synod meeting, which is held every five years. Dirk Jan Schoon, Bishop of Haarlem (The Netherlands) and Georg Blase, priest in Dettighofen (Germany) attended the synod as representatives of the International Bishop’s Conference of the Union of Utrecht.

The meeting opened with a brief service of prayer and song, followed by words of welcome to the guests. Prime Bishop Anthony Mikovsky, Bishop of the Eastern Diocese Paul Sobiechowski and Gregory Mludzik, priest in Wallington (NY) were in attendance on behalf of the Polish National Catholic Church (PNCC) in the United States and Canada. Bishop Mikovsky assured the Synod that the PNCC would undertake no activities to separate and take over parishes from the Polish church, as it regards the Polish Catholic Church as its sister church in Poland. Instead it aims to promote unity within the church and to maintain the links between the Polish Catholic Church and the PNCC, which left the Union of Utrecht in 2003.

Bishop Schoon conveyed greetings from the churches of the Union of Utrecht and from Joris Vercammen, Archbishop of Utrecht. He emphasised that synodality is an expression of catholicity as understood in the old Catholic tradition, and expressed his wish that the synod be guided by the Holy Spirit.

Following the reports of activities in the three dioceses, the Synod chair Bishop Wiktor Wysoczansky introduced two candidates for vacant bishop’s seats: Stanislaw Bosy, priest in Szczecin, for the diocese of Wroclaw, and Antoni Norman, priest in Czestochowa, for the diocese of Krakow. Neither achieved the necessary two-thirds majority to be appointed. However, Bishop Wysoczanski was re-elected as Prime Bishop and received flowers and applause. After the remaining items on the agenda had been dealt with, the meeting concluded with prayers and song.

+Dirk Jan Schoon, Bishop of Haarlem

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