... and I'm trying to learn as much as I can about my wife & my responsibilities as the parents of the groom.
I live in Washington State and my son, his future bride and her parents live in Florida. They just announced their engagement a few weeks ago and the bride's parents seem to be taking charge of everything and I'm feeling very guilty that I should be doing or paying for something. I'm expecting this to be a traditional Polish church wedding with many friends and relatives coming from Poland.
Anybody that can enlighten me? What should my wife and I be preparing or paying for?
I don't know how the wedding will look like, if it will be more Polish or rather American style, and what her family thinks of it (how they want it to be).
First rule: talk, discuss things, even in Poland the traditions differ from region to region, so you are not expected to know it all, you have to ask the other part and agree things (the sooner the better, it allows a better planning). If you don't feel comfortable asking her parents what you should be responsable for, ask your son to do it in your name.
In your case (the distance between Florida and Washington) noone would be expecting you to actively be in Florida to help (unless you're a retired/unoccupied person with lots of time on your hands :)
In case of a "home-made" wedding the general rules in my area (central Poland) are that the groom (or his parents) pay for:
1/ minister/priest + other church expenses
2/ the band at the wedding
3/ alcohol and soft drinks
(normally for all the guests, but if there's a strong disproportion in the number of guests from both sides, let's say there are only 40 relatives and friends of the groom and about 100 of the bride, in that case you'd pay the double of "your" guests, i.e. for 80 persons, leaving the remaining 60 at the bride's (and her family's) expenses)
If the wedding is organized by a restaurant and you don't have to take care of foods and drinks, just to pay the bills (with a fixed amount per guest) then usually you pay for groom's side guests and they for bride's side guests.