The Friends of the John Paul II Foundation in New York each year honor Polish priests for the service and dedication extended to the foundation and Polonia. This year the honor was bestowed upon Fr. Marek Sobczak. This took place during the Banquet held on Sunday, June 5, 2011 at the Princess Manor in Greenpoint. In this manner we showed appreciation to St. Stanislaus Kostka Parish which is celebrating its 115th Anniversary and Fr. Marek, who is celebrating his 30th anniversary in priesthood. The banquet was attended by representatives of many Polish institutions, as well as priests from Polish parishes. The guests were greeted by Mr. Michael Pajak, President who offered a brief history and causes of the John Paul II Foundation. The invocation was given by Fr. Prelat and Canon of Holy Cross Parish, Fr. Peter Zendzian. The emcee of the event was George Czastkiewicz.
In the artistic part of the program, the very talented vocalist, Ms. Ewa Lewandowska performed two amazing songs, and one written especially for her by Mr. Peter Rubik. She is well known for her participation in the Polish version of the television program "I’ve got talent", a graduate of The Music Academy in Bydgoszcz and Katowice. Next, the older members of the Krakowianki and Gorale from St. Stanislaus Kostka Parish performed some traditional folk dances. Also in attendance were Polish Scouts and children from the Polish Saturday School of Maria Konopnicka in Greenpoint.
A special surprise guest was Mr. Jerzy Majcherczyk, known traveller, who discovered the Colca canyon in Peru. On the 30th anniversary of the founding, he was able to get the waterfall in the canyon to be officially named in honor of our great Pope, The John Paul II Waterfalls and commemorative plaques installed there were unveiled. One of the commemorative plaques was donated by St. Stanislaus Kostka Parish located at Blessed Pope John Paul II Square in Greenpoint.
The John Paul II Foundation is a religious and charitable organization. It was established by the Holy Father under a decree on October 16, 1981. It actions are connected to the pontificate of the Polish Pope and carries out charitable works, as instructed by the founder. The members of the organization concern themselves with the development of the spiritual heritage of John Paul II, among others, through documenting his pontificate, collecting memorabilia and publications about the Pope, funding scholarships for Catholic Educational Institutions, as well as the spreading of Christian culture, values and ethics in the modern world. The John Paul II Foundation in New York, which was established in 1997, plays an active part in the realization of these causes,