St. Barbara Parish celebrates a Polish Saint - 19 Action News|Cleveland, OH|News, Weather, Sports

St. Barbara Parish celebrates a Polish Saint

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The Polish Mass was conducted in the dark. The Polish Mass was conducted in the dark.
Then, the lights miraculously came back on; much to the delight of the priest and parishioners. Then, the lights miraculously came back on; much to the delight of the priest and parishioners.
CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) -

To celebrate in Cleveland the newly canonized Pope John Paul II at the Vatican there was an appropriate and celebratory mass predominantly in Polish at St. Barbara Parish.

"Since he was our Polish Pope I can totally remember the day they ordained him. It was a big celebration for us," recalled Phyllis Cielec.

Saint John Paul II was Pope from 1978 until he died in 2005.

Friar Jerry Keller cemented his significance to the church, "Someone from our own age listened to his teaching followed his direction is now canonized!"

Carol Molek and Mary Jane Farren actually met Saint John Paul II in Rome. Mary Jane has a picture to prove it and to this day carries his image.

"Everywhere I go. My whole family has this picture. Not because of me; but because, someday he would become a Saint and today is the day," Farren offered.

Sunday, April 27 was a precedent setting day. Pope John XXIII was also canonized a Saint; making the blessing the Catholic Church's first dual canonization in history. 

Another unprecedented first from Rome this day: Retired Pope Benedict XVI was in attendance with the current Pope Francis. This marks the first time a reigning Pope and retired Pope celebrated mass together in public.

At St. Barbara the first part of mass was conducted unexpectedly without power. Then the lights came on one-by-one from the front.

Once power was restored, the priest joked that Saint John Paul II may have sent two angels that looked a lot like Cleveland Public Power workers.

At this parish, the parishioners are used to dealing with the unexpected.

St. Barbara Parish was one of the churches Bishop Richard Lennon slated to close before the Vatican intervened to keep the doors open.

"I know! Can you imagine my grandchildren when they get older say their grandma met a Saint? It's unreal!" exclaimed Carol Molek.

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