75th Anniversary of the Martyrdom of St. Maximilian Kolbe
Week 14. November 13-20
Perhaps the second greatest dream of Maximilian after consecrating every person to the Immaculata for the reign of the Sacred Heart of Jesus in the world, was to have a Niepekalanow, a City of the Immaculate in every country of the world.
His first one was in Niepekalanow Poland and is the Mother House of all Cities of the Immaculate. As Niepekalanow grew It consisted of a chapel, a friary to live in, several buildings for printing and publishing, even a fire department.
Dreams without hard work and sacrifice however rarely come true.
In the early days, since there were no tables, the friars would take wooden planks and place them across their suitcases and sat on the bare ground for dinner. They used cheap tin plates and cups and a few loaves of bread for food. The winter of 1928-29 was especially hard as the Friars were still in their wooden shacks covered with cardboard or tarpaper
Eventually by 1938 it became the world’s largest friary with almost 700 friars.
Maximilian’s dream had come true, only to see it destroyed by the Nazis
On September 5, 1939 almost all of the 622 friars, 137 seminarians, and 13 priests left for what was thought to be safer places. For those few who remained behind, at every morning mediation Kolbe reminded them that it might be the last day of their life and to prepare for a holy death.
Maximilian realized that Niepekalanows, Cities of the Immaculate were not locations on a map but ultimately a place in the heart and that even if Niepekalanow was destroyed and the Friars were dispersed like leaves in the wind, as long as the Immaculata was in their hearts, Niepekalanow would continue.
Prayer : O Immaculata, make your dwelling not in buildings of wood and stone but in my heart.
Meditations and Questions :
1. What are the characteristics of a City of the Immaculate
2. How did Maximilian’s dream of the City of the Immaculate continue in spite of the War and the Nazi invasion?
3. How can an MI Village be smaller version of Niepekalanow, a City of the Immaculate?
4. What can I build for the Immaculata?