Fr. Gural Remembered for Promoting Polish Culture

FrGuralA Mass of Christian burial for Father Marion A. Gural, a retired priest of the diocese, was celebrated June 9 at Our Lady of Poland Church, Southampton, L.I. He died June 5 at his home in Southampton. He was 86.

Born in Brooklyn, Father Gural was baptized in Our Lady of Consolation Church, Williamsburg. He attended St. Francis College and Cathedral College, both Brooklyn, and Immaculate Conception Seminary, Huntington, L.I. He was ordained June 2, 1956 by Archbishop Thomas E. Molloy at St. James Pro-Cathedral, Downtown Brooklyn.

He served as an assistant at St. Josaphat, Bayside, 1956-66; St. Camillus, Rockaway Beach, 1966-69; St. Nicholas, Williamsburg, 1969-72; and Holy Cross, Maspeth, 1972-83.

In 1984, he was named pastor of Our Lady of Consolation and served there until 1990. He also was pastor of St. Stanislaus, Bishop and Martyr, Ozone Park, 1990-94. In 1994, he took early retirement for health reasons.

Father Gural also served as coordinator of the Polish Apostolate, and he taught at Most Holy Trinity H.S., Williamsburg, 1969-71, and Cathedral Prep, Brooklyn, 1971-77.

He was a member of the Diocesan Priests’ Senate, 1975-77, and 1980-81; chaplain to the Don Bosco K. of C. Council, 1971-2003; chaplain to the Pulaski Assn. of the NYPD, and a member of the board of directors of POMPC, 1981-89.

In 1990, he received the Humanitarian Award from the Polish Gift of Life.

Bishop-elect Witold Morziewski was the main celebrant of the funeral Mass. Special concelebrants included Father Thomas Pettei, Andrzej Klocek, and James J. Meszaros, who preached the homily.

“He was a very pastorally oriented priest, very good with the people,” said Msgr. Peter Zendzian, pastor of St. Matthias Church, Ridgewood.

Father Gural was also an artist who made paintings and banners, especially with Polish themes, said Msgr. Zendzian. “He brought the best Catholic elements of Polish culture.”

Msgr. Zendzian – who knew Father Gural through the late Cardinal Anthony Bevilacqua, founding director of the Catholic Migration and Refugee Office, and through the Polish Apostolate ­– remembered him from his devoted work and involvement with the Polish community.

“He was a very kind, generous man. He was always helpful,” Msgr. Zendzian added. “We are going to miss him.”

Burial was in St. John’s Cemetery, Middle Village.

2 thoughts on “Fr. Gural Remembered for Promoting Polish Culture

  1. Father Gural will always be in the hearts of the members of the Pulaski Association New York City Police Department. He was always there for us both in good times and sad times. His counsel was of great value to the members. He made himself available at meetings and whenever someone was in special need. Father enjoyed our parties and helped us in times of sorrow. Me he rest in peace with God now.

  2. I was a child of 7 when I met Fr, Gural. I think it was love at first sight! He was in charge with of both my First Holy Communion and later my Confirmation classes. I believe that he loved all children because if there was something, anything, involving children he was there. He took us roller skating, into the city (to march in the Pulaski Day Parade and then onto Radio City Music Hall) , every Christmas Eve he was right there making sure the procession was perfect, the same thing with St. Josaphat’s 59th Anniversary and every bazaar. Dance or celebration. Living right next to the church he often had dinner with our family, as did Father Joe once he arrived.
    We moved away just as I was becoming a teenager but we stayed in touch, through the years, He always remembered my Birthday, and if he had my address, never failed to send Christmas and Birthday cards. To say that I loved him will never be enough. He is responsible for teaching me to love our LORD &a SAVIOR, JESUS and most especially The Holy Mother of us all. I’m no longer young but he is still close to my heart and I shall live him always.