Edith Stein connects

Ceremony in honour of the Patroness of Europe
at the invitation of
Bishop Roman Pindel, Ordinary of the Diocese of Bielsko-Żywiecka
 in cooperation with the Centre for Dialogue and Prayer in Oświęcim

9 August 2019 in Oświęcim

“I trust that the wall will never be so high,
that we would not be able to shake hands over it. “
From Edith Stein’s letter to a Polish friend Roman Ingarden
May 31, 1917, written during the war.

Edith Stein, Sister Teresa Benedicta of the Cross, was proclaimed the Co-Patron of Europe in 1999.

She was born into a Jewish family in Wroclaw (now Poland; before WWII it was Breslau, Germany). She studied primarily Philosophy in various cities in Germany. During her studies she joined the Catholic Church. She became a famous lecturer. After the Nazis came to power she entered a Carmelite convent. In 1942 she was  murdered by the German state in Auschwitz because of her Jewish origin.

Two key themes will accompany us: The image of man and belonging to a nation. Throughout her life Edith wanted to understand the human being. One cannot understand the human being except in relationship to other persons and to God.In the time of rising Nazi nationalism and racism in which she lived, these were themes of life and death. Finally she became a victim of this insane ideology. The meaning of man and the meaning of national identity – these topics are still current today.


10:00 The Way of Prayer
along the Ramp in the former Auschwitz-Birkenau camp to the monument between the ruins of the gas chambers and crematoria. We are symbolically accompanying Edith Stein on her last way together with the Jewish people. We pray for all the victims and for peace in the world.

14:00 Opening of an exhibition about Edith Stein
at the Centre for Dialogue and Prayer in Oświęcim.

14:30 Conversations in small groups
with selected texts of Edith Stein.

17.00 Celebration of Holy Mass
in the convent of the Carmelite Sisters.
Presiding celebrant: Bishop Clemens Pickel, Saratov, Russia
Sermon: Archbishop Grzegorz Ryś, Łódź

Joining us on the 9th August will be a pilgrimage from Russia: about 100 young people from all 4 dioceses of the Roman Catholic Church.

If you are interested in participating in the full program, please contact:
Centre for Dialogue and Prayer in Oświęcim
32-602 Oświęcim,
ul. Kolbego 1
+48 33 843 1000