Wednesday, March 21, 2012

The Priest Who Married Us is a Saint.. my opinion, and maybe  that of the diocese of Allentown, PA, which  just sent 1000 pages of preliminary testimony on the life of Father Walter Ciszek to Rome. 

Father Ciszek was an American Jesuit who spent 20 years in the Soviet gulag--accused as a "Vatican Spy". He continued to pursue his priestly ministry both in the labor camp, and after he was freed and living in Siberia. After his return to the United States in 1963 he wrote two best selling books, With God in Russia and He Leadeth Me . Until the end of his life in 1984 he lived a hidden life in the Bronx, counselling and directing all who came to him, from priests to the Bronx homeless to an engaged couple named Daria and Bill. We were incredibly honored when Fr. Ciszek agreed to officiate at our wedding in 1980.

One of these days I'll scan those old wedding photos and put them up here.


  1. You're the second person I've known who has a connection with Father Ciszek! An older couple in our parish (now both deceased) told me about him one day when we were making pierogi for a parish event. (I go to St. Casimir Church, need I say more?) One of them was related to him. His story is amazing! I think it's time for me to get my hands on one of his books.

    1. He's a Polish American hero, so with a name like yours--even if its by marriage--you really ought to get to know Fr.Ciszek. Of the two books, he preferred the second one--He Leadeth Me, because it's more about the spirituality he learned while immprisoned, rather than just a straight biography as in With God in Russia.

  2. WHOA!! I can't believe that you were married by Fr. Ciszek! I can't wait to see the photos. I read his books last year and really enjoyed them (I did a lot of underlining. :-). I think it was the first time that I contemplated that God's will for me is what is happening to me right now -- not in a Russian prison, but in a traffic jam, cleaning a toilet, late for an appointment or schooling the kids. I still struggle -- time to reread that book! (I also really loved "He Leadeth Me.") God bless, Michele

  3. Daria, I remember reading " With God in Russia", last year and having to put it down several times because it was so overwhelming to read all he went through. I can still picture the Russian prison guards. It deeply impacted me..I look forward to reading about his spiritual lessons in 'He Leadeth Me' .

    I may have to read that before the book I won...which finally arrived yesterday! : ) Thanks again.

    Blessings and +