His Excellency Archbishop of Melbourne


His Excellency Archbishop of Melbourne

Peter Comensoli DD

St Patrick’s Centre

486 Albert Street

East Melbourne VIC 3002

17 August 2021

Your Grace,

We, the undersigned, are Polish immigrants – loyal, hardworking, loving this country, dedicated to serve Australian community and in a large proportion strongly attached to the Catholic Church. Many of us have experienced how it is to be oppressed because in great numbers we were living under the communist rule in Poland. We came to Australia longing for life in a democracy and driven by the hope that this wonderful country will give us an opportunity to be free.

Over the years, Polish people who have settled in this country have created strong communities involved in building the great society of happy multicultural Australians. Many of us are highly educated. We have brought from Poland a tradition of strong families based on our Catholic faith and we don’t treat lightly our obligations and our rights to practice our religion.

 We are people of faith suffering greatly at present because our religious practices are not treated seriously by the authorities, and because our government considers religious ministry to be “non-essential”.

During this pandemic we are seeing an erosion of democratic values which do not seem to be respected anymore by the secular authorities in Australia. Their decisions are clearly displaying the tendency towards totalitarianism that we had experienced in the communist-ruled Poland. Disproportionate restrictions imposed on millions of Australians, constant pressure and fear created by the media are resulting in agonising situations in our society. The adverse effects of repeatedly imposed lockdowns include not only economic devastation of businesses but also the tragic effects on the mental state of majority of us. The best illustration of this is the record numbers of calls to Lifeline Australia. On Monday 9/08/21 this helpline received 3345 calls – the highest daily volume in its 58 – year history.

We are coming to Your Grace looking for rescue in this tragic situation that is forcing us to cry for your attention. We desperately need your protection and help.

It is well documented in scientific research that adherence to religious practices offers immeasurable mental and physical health benefits. For our community it is much more than that, because we are faithful children of God longing for the real presence of Jesus, and for the real contact with Him in the Eucharistic adoration and in the Holy Communion received during the Mass. For us, Jesus is truly present in every church. No digital experience can replace this sense of Our Lord’s real presence. Images streamed live on the screens of our electronic devices are not equivalent to participation in the Eucharistic liturgy.

Holy Mass is not a movie. We need to be in touch with transcendence, with the real presence of our Lord Jesus Christ. The longing for this is getting unbearable for many of us. Jesus’ body in the Holy Eucharist is really our bread of life and we cannot be deprived of His presence and of the spiritual nourishment flowing from it.

Additionally, our priests provide us with something nobody can replace. We need to confess our sins; the Sacrament of Confession provides healing no less valuable to the believer than a visit to a doctor. We come to Your Grace as our spiritual leader hoping that you can use your authority and influence to alleviate the suffering of the faithful children of God entrusted to your care.

Yours sincerely;

Editor and publisher of naszepismo.pl


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