- January 23, 2013
Vilnius commemoration of the January Uprising – finished in the police station!
Quite an unexpected ending of the only commemoration in Vilnius of 150th anniversary of the outbreak of the January Uprising, which were organized by WHM (Mary Troop of Vilnius). It’s a rather big happening – after ceremonies on “Łukaszki” area, and marching along Giedymin Av – the happening aroused the interest of the police, which took its part during the Mass on the Hill of Three Crosses. Participants managed to convince the officers to wait until the Mass is over, and then Reverend Dariusz Stańczyk was transported to the police station…
The official date of the outbreak is said to be 22 January 1863, when the provisional government announced its manifesto. Therefore, origins of a common in Poland term: the January Uprising- not used in Lithuania – perhaps because the uprising took place about a week later here. The Provincial Committee of the Lithuania governed by Konstanty Kalinowski and Zygmund Sierakowski joined the fellow men on 1 February, announcing the establishment of the provisional government of Lithuania and Ruthenia. Nevertheless 2013 is the official year of the Uprising of 1863 in both Poland and Lithuania, but when the whole Poland was focused on the commemoration of the Uprising on 22 January, in Lithuania, barely anything happened.
There, however, were, on this day – January 22 – two glorious exceptions that saved the honor of Lithuania.
Firstly, the Bank of Lithuania put into monetary circulation a commemorative coin to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the uprising, on which- besides symbolic for the Lithuania for that period one sabre and a few scythes (obverse) – probably for the first time in the history of coins of the Republic of Lithuania one can find the White Eagle next to the Pagonia and Michael archangel. Enthusiasts of historical disputes may argue whether the eagle should have a crown or not – Lithuanian province stamps from that period, especially those connected to the uprising, are usually indistinct, but on lots of them one may spot that there’s something that may resemble a crown at the top of the eagle.
Secondly, the another glorious exception was the commemoration organized by WHM. Young patriots of Vilnius region weren’t scared off by biting cold and the weekend before the anniversary they went on a pilgrimage around the Lithuania following the trail of the uprising. 75 young people during two-day adventure, travelled almost 600 km, visited 7 places of battles, laying wreathes and placing over 200 candles. The memory of the uprising is especially vivid in the central Lithuania, where the only on Lithuania, Museum of the January Uprising is located.
Twice as many people (age 15-50) gathered on 22 January at the second part of commemoration in Vilnius. Scouts paid tribute to the deceased on Łuski square, which 150 years ago was full of gallows, together carrying torches and flagues of Lithuania, Poland and Europe they went, heading toward the Old Town. Even though they blocked one side of the street, no one complained, they peacefully walked down the Giedymin Av. approaching the cathedral and the Gediminas’ Tower, where the ashes of the deceased during the uprising, are located. After short prayers and singing, the headed towards the final place of the ceremony – the Hill of Three Crosses, where the police took their part asking for showing the permission for organization of mass happenings.
Reverend Dariusz Stańczyk after a short conversation convinced the officers to wait until the mass is over. Nevertheless the police called in the reinforcements, and police cars started to gather under the hill, meanwhile the field mass with the beautiful winter scenery of Vilnius took its place.
The police acted after the mass, thanks to Reverend they waited until the liturgy was over. The officers watched the mass, capturing with the video camera “faces of juvenile delinquents”. Attempts to persuade the officers to say the lord’s prayers together, for the sake of Lithuania, unfortunately failed – shortly after the liturgy, the head officer started negotiations with the main “violator” of the public order.
Apparently “Antonni Mackiewicz of the 20th century” – Rev. Dariusz Stańczyk organized a wonderful celebration of a truly patriotic tradition – against the law. Rev. Stańczyk said for “Wilnoteka”, that he did not turn to authorities for the permission on purpose, as he didn’t want it to be decided by the same person, who allowed “the equality parade” in Vilnius, for which the homosexual community applied. The conversation with the police officer, in sharp frost, was in fact short, but also concrete. Consequently Reverend was asked to come to the police station, to which he was transported by a police car. It turned out that, 7 police cars, including 2 police buses were waiting for the participant under the hill.
Reverend, after a short search was taken to the Police station, where he continued the commemoration, for almost three hours talking with police officers about the importance of the January Uprising for both Poland and Lithuania, and about its weight for Polish-Lithuanian sake, each of officers received a commemorative sticker. Additionally he explained, in a written form (enclosed below), motives of his behavior. Rev. Dariusz Stańczyk was charged with organizing over 50-man not sanctioned public event, then he was released.
The commemoration events will end on 20 February – when the Court of Vilnius will announce a fine for Reverend. Rev. Dariusz Stańczyk Said that “regardless of the fine, I will ask the president of Vilnius for an amnesty, the president publicly encourage the citizens to commemorate the uprising. “Antonni Mackiewicz of the 20th century” admits that, he will pray for the appropriate sentence, for example an exile to Siberia- where he’s going anyway in the summer, following the history of the exiled.
Considering the perfidy of the Lithuanian justice, I’m afraid it could be public works, such as the protection of public order during “the equality parade”…
Clarification of Rev. Dariusz Stańczyk
Police station no. 3 in Vilnius
On the day of commemoration in Vilnius of 150th anniversary of the outbreak of the January Uprising, “In the name of god, and for the sake of our and your freedom”, me and scouts deliberately laid wreaths and lit candles, we conducted the service on the Hill of Three Crosses, thanking for the freedom of Lithuania from Russia.
Taking in account that 2013 – is a year of the January Uprising, scouts bravely visit graves of the deceased. No one helps us. Nothing is being done at this special time, to pay tribute to the heroes of Poland and Lithuania.
I was preparing an official letter, to ask for permission, to the authorities of Vilnius, as I had been doing for the 18 years of the IndependenceRelay, I respect the law and the authorities. However, when I heard that “Equality Parade” has been confirmed, my heart cried over Lithuania – where is this nation heading to. God’s law is violated, as well as the culture of Christian nation- Lithuania! That is why I decided not to hand in any written motion, but I went to ask for the permission in person. The march lasted few minutes anyway, with prayers and singing, and in a quiet atmosphere.
I protest that “fathers” of the Divine Mercy city agree to the demoralization of the families and the youth. Toleration- yes, but not the destruction of fundamental values of the nation of Lithuania.
In God we trust!
Saint Rafał Kalinowski, pray for Lithuania and Poland!
Rev. Dariusz Stańczyk
On 20 February at 8:30, administrative court will hear the case of the March of Freedom organizer – Rev. Dariusz Stańczyk. Obviously, I’m not intending to evade my “punishment”.
I it hadn’t been for the phone call of „someone import ant”,” the March of Freedom” could be conducted in a quiet atmosphere, as the sound equipment didn’t work due to a big freeze. Reverend is sympathetic about the police work. He thinks that they are great people and is happy that, they were interested in listening about what he had to say about the uprising from 1863, about a common cause for independence. He could talk so much, about saint Rafal Kalinowski, Zygmund Sierakowski, and Rev. Antonii Maćkiewicz, that he understood this as the reason for being there, on 22 January 2013. Three hours on police station were not wasted. When I remind myself the Soviet years, it was terrible “to be” among them. Lithuania police nowadays made impression of being very nice. Obviously, at the beginning they assumed that we are “troublemakers from Poland” in white-red clothes, carrying also Lithuanian, papal and European flagues. A prayer for the deceased in the Uprising in Lithuanian, the Lord’s Prayer, and the Hail Mary – during the liturgy on the Hill of Three Crosses – positively changed their attitude about this March”. Well I reminded myself “worse interrogations at stations of MO (Civic Militia) in Wadowice in 1978, in Grodno in 1988, or in Moscow in 1989 (…). It’s important that we prayed for the deceased, for the nation, for the Lithuanian and for the Poles.”
Rev. Dariusz Stańczyk
Camerawork: Valentin Ryčkov
Montage: Paweł Dąbrowski
Tłumaczenie Jacek Malatyński w ramach praktyk w Europejskiej Fundacji Praw Człowieka, www.efhr.eu. Translated by Jacek Malatyński the framework of a traineeship programme of the European Foundation of Human Rights, www.efhr.eu.