Honorary citizens of Częstochowa
JOHN PAUL II
John Paul II (lat. Ioannes Paulus II), born Karol Józef Wojtyła (May 18, 1920 in Wadowice), died April 2, 2005 in Vatican City) – a Polish Roman Catholic clergyman, The Archbishop of Krakow, a cardinal and a pope (from October 16, 1978 to April 2, 2005), recognized as a Servant of God by the Catholic Church (he will be canonized on April 27, 2014), Knight of the Order of the White Eagle.
He was a poet and a linguist, as well as an actor, a playwright and a teacher. A philosopher of history, a phenomenologist and a mystic, he was also a theorist of Christian personalism.
He is considered to be the greatest Pole of modern times and one of the most charismatic people of the 20th century.
As a Pope he visited Poland six times, and on the World Youth Day in 1991 he met with young people gathered by the Jasna Góra Monastery. It was attented by more than 1,5 billion pilgrims from over 60 countries.
On August 15, 1991, during the 4th World Youth Day, the Holy Father received the Honorary Citizenship of Czestochowa in the Knights' Hall of the Jasna Gora Monastery.
Częstochowa was the first city in the world to give the honorary citizenship to the Polish Pope. The city authorities were present during the ceremony as well as the twin town delegations from: Lourdes, Loreto, Altötting and Pforzheim. The key to the city and a copy of the Citizenship Certificate were placed in the Jasna Gora Monastery and the Czestochowa Museum.
Visits of The Holy Father John Paul II in Częstochowa:
June 4-6, 1979
June 18-21, 1983
June 12-13, 1987
August 14-16, 1991
June 4, 1997
June 17, 1999
August 19, 2002
Ryszard Kaczorowski of Jelita (born October 26, 1919 in Białystok, died April 10, 2010 in Smoleńsk) – a Polish politician, social social activist and scout, head of the Białystok banner of the Szare Szeregi in 1940, after 1945 in exile, member of the National Council of Poland, from 1989 to 1990 President of Poland in Exile.
He was arrested by NKVD and sentenced to death, which was later changed to 10 years in a concentration camp . Following the Sikorski-Mayski Agreement he was set free and enlisted in the General Władysław Anders' Army. He fought in many battles, like the Battle of Monte Cassino. After the war he was the Chief Scout, and, subsequently, President of the émigré Polish Scouting Union (ZHP), presided the Polish delegation for the International Jubilee Jamboree and the World Scout Jamboree on Monte Cassino and in Belgium. Died tragically on April 10, 2010,in a crash of Polish airplane Tu-154 in Smoleńsk, with the presidential couple - Maria and Lech Kaczyński - on the way to ceremony commemorating the 70th anniversary of the Katyn massacre.
MARIE and PIERRE CHAUBON
Lourdes was the first town in West Europe which the local government of Czestochowa decided to cooperate with after the local elections in 1989.
Pierre Chaubon, the then councilor of Lourdes, contacted the Citizen's Comittee „Solidarity” at request of the mayor of Lourdes. As a result a twin town agreement between two Marian centres, Czestochowa and Lourdes, was signed on August 5, 1990, a few months after the elections.
In the same year Marie-Thérèse Chaubon funded the „L'Etoile Bleue” society, which initial aim was to provide humanitarian aid to our town.
Yet, the society's activity had taken other forms, like support for restoring the local government in Poland, training for office workers, doctors, students of hotel management and treasurers of Czestochowa voivodeship.
Supported by Marie-Thérèse Chaubon, who worked as a spokesman for Częstochowa with the following mayors of Lourdes, and her society, the cooperation between the citizens of Lourdes and Częstochowa could develop in such fields as culture (art and photography exhibitions, plein air painting workshops for artists and young people), youth exchange, tourism, health and sports. Those relations resulted in many international congresses and seminars dedicated to medicine, tourism, pilgrimage and european integration issues, as well as in the implementation of common projects subsidized by the European Union.
The Chaubons promoted a favourable image of our town in France. Due to their actions, the agreement between the towns' authorities resulted in direct relations between the local communities: associations, cultural communities, schools and sport clubs. For this activity and her contribution to French-Polish relationship the leader of „L'Etoile Bleue”, Marie-Thérèse Chaubon was earlier decorated by the Polish President with the Order of Merit of the Republic of Poland and by the French Minister of Foreign Affairs with the National Order of Merit.
Zygmunt Rolat was born in Częstochowa in 1930. During the Second World War he was sent to the Czestochowa Ghetto, and after its destruction to a labor camp Hasag Pelcery (area of today's Wełnopol).
After the war Zygmunt Rolat emmigrated to the USA, graduated law school and started his own company, achieving economic success. He took up social and philantropic work. He is i.e. a president of the American comittee for support of The Museum of the History of Polish Jews in Warsaw, a board member of many institutions, like the Kościuszko Foundation or The Council of the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley, California. He is also a president of the World Association of Czestochowa Jews and Their Descendants