PROSPECT HEIGHTS — Diana Tasior, 19, defines herself by her Polish heritage.
The traditions, the culture and the faith have made her who she is today. That’s why the annual Polish Heritage Mass at Co-Cathedral of St. Joseph, Prospect Heights, is so important to her.
“Just seeing all of the parishes coming together and everyone unite,” Tasior said. “You just feel everyone coming together and the power of what our faith really means.”
The Diocese of Brooklyn Polish Apostolate held its 27th annual Polish Heritage Mass on Oct. 20. The theme: “Youth in the Church United in the Holy Spirit.”
The community welcomed Bishop Henryk Tomasik of Radom, Poland, president of the Polish Bishops’ Conference Council for the Pastoral Care of Youth, to celebrate the Mass, along with Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio, Auxiliary Bishop Witold Mroziewski and many Polish priests from the Diocese of Brooklyn.
Bishop Tomasik spoke about the importance of keeping Polish heritage alive.
“We have to ask the young people today to continue to grow up with the tradition and the culture for the next generations to come,” Bishop Tomasik said through a translator before Mass.
“I want to remind our young people about the wonderful teachings of St. John Paul II,” the bishop said.
The Mass was replete with Polish culture from Polish hymns to the traditional Polish dress worn by some of the faithful in attendance.
Tasior said she sees young Polish-Americans struggling to keep their faith, and so a day where tradition meets religion is special.
She said letting young people take an active role will help others stay interested in the Catholic faith.
Bishop DiMarzio agreed that the church must have programs to keep youth involved and to address the challenges they face in the modern world.