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Wszystkich Świętych (All Saints Day) // Dzien Zaduszny (All Souls day)


Zgubiony 15 | 1,554
1 Nov 2007  #1
All Saints' Day is a festival which has been celebrated in Poland and the rest of the Catholic world for many centuries. All Saints Day is a national holiday, and a day when people all over Poland visit the graves of loved ones and to place candles and flowers on graves. The special candles, which can burn for many hours, are placed there so that departed souls can find their way through the darkness. Cemeteries are lit by many hundreds of these candles and at night the cemeteries can often be seen glowing from long distances. Many Poles travel long distances to visit family graves and to remember the dead. The holiday is also sometimes known as the Day of the Dead.

The 2nd of November called the Day of All Souls (Zaduszki) is the special occasions to pray for our family members and for these that died but are still in purgatory waiting their time to be able to enter heaven. The masses are held in the churches just like the day before. Additionally, the names of the descendants are read by priests during the services and all pray together for these souls. This day is usually gloomier and more hazy and rainy than the November 1st in Poland.
sapphire 22 | 1,241
1 Nov 2007  #2
Thank you for this post. My partner has gone to Poland this week to visit his departed and non-departed loved ones. This has helped me to understand more about the significance of this time. I have seem similar things in other countries.. In Mexico Day of the Dead is very popular, but I wasnt sure if it was the same as in Poland.
krysia 23 | 3,059
1 Nov 2007  #3
I lived next to a cemetary in Poland and during this holiday there was a mass in the evening in the cemetary and everyone would light candles and place them on the graves. You could see the glowing cemetary from far away giving it an eirie feeling. It is a big holiday in Poland.
Wroclaw 44 | 5,388
1 Nov 2007  #4
The special candles, which can burn for many hours, are placed there so that departed souls can find their way through the darkness.

Owing to commercialism these candles can be battery powered copies.
jareck8
1 Nov 2007  #5
we shuold say a prayer for those people no longer with us.. may god bless their dear souls
OP Zgubiony 15 | 1,554
1 Nov 2007  #6
You could see the glowing cemetary from far away giving it an eirie feeling. It is a big holiday in Poland.

yes. For those of you who have never visited a PL cemetary, here are a couple of visuals. It's amazing to see all of these candles.
sapphire 22 | 1,241
1 Nov 2007  #7
is there ever any problem with them falling over and causing fires?
OP Zgubiony 15 | 1,554
1 Nov 2007  #8
Most are in glass so unless someone intentionally lights the cemetary on fire...prob not. It's cool, they sell tons of candles/flowers right outside of the cemetary.
sapphire 22 | 1,241
1 Nov 2007  #9
it looks nice. wish I could have gone too :(
OP Zgubiony 15 | 1,554
1 Nov 2007  #10
Ours aren't nearly as nice looking any time of the year. I love the fact that most PL families still pay respect and visit frequently adding flowers and candles. I've seen teh cemetaries lit up on other days as well and not just all saints day.
Krzysztof 2 | 973
1 Nov 2007  #11
any problem with them falling over and causing fires?

things like that don't fall over easily:
pl.wikipedia.org/wiki/Znicz
images.google.com/images?client=opera&rls=en&q=znicz&sourceid=opera&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8&um=1&sa=N&tab=wi

unfortunatelly, the older types (thick glass or ceramic, open at the top) are replaced with modern ones (thin glass or even plastic all over, instead of glass and metal),

I really loved the old type, when I was a kid - we were all putting our fingers in it, so the stearin was sticking to the fingers and when it cooled down we had colourful artificial "fingernails")
Ursus 1 | 3
1 Nov 2007  #12
With Halloween preceding these two very important days (All Saints & All Souls) - it is important not to get caught up with the ever growing commercialism (candy, gore, horror etc.) and forget to pray for our dearly departed friends and family. Also, asking for the intercession of Saints is especially important during this time as well.

I think that in N. America Halloween has overshadowed these two important days - I'm proud that Poland pays proper homage to our beloved Saints and the souls of the dead - not to ghouls and goblins.
_Sofi_
1 Nov 2007  #13
I lived next to a cemetary in Poland and during this holiday there was a mass in the evening in the cemetary and everyone would light candles and place them on the graves. You could see the glowing cemetary from far away giving it an eirie feeling. It is a big holiday in Poland.

That sounds really nice.
krysia 23 | 3,059
1 Nov 2007  #14
Iy was really nice when we took our tents and slept by the cemetary at night... that was spooky!
_Sofi_
1 Nov 2007  #15
wow hehe, I'd love to have done that - but none of my family/friends would have the guts to join me if I asked. Or maybe they would class it more as having sense than lacking guts.
Wroclaw 44 | 5,388
1 Nov 2007  #16
With Halloween preceding these two very important days (All Saints & All Souls) - it is important not to get caught up with the ever growing commercialism

It will be a few years yet before we see Halloween in Poland.

The kids can't go Trick or Treating because most people live in flats and if they can't gain entry to the block it will be a waste of time.

Many people leave town in the days before November 1st. This will also cause problems for children.
_Sofi_
1 Nov 2007  #17
The kids can't go Trick or Treating because most people live in flats and if they can't gain entry to the block it will be a waste of time.

Yes living on even third floor of a block of flats deters kids from knocking at the door - it's more fun living in a house in that way.
Polanglik 11 | 303
2 Nov 2007  #18
Living in London , Poles will be attending to the graves of their loved ones on November 1st & 2nd; in Poland Nov 1st is a national holiday, although most do not go to work on 2nd November either.

Most of the cemetaries with Polish graves in England will have special prayers held by the local parish priest this coming Sunday.

Gunnersbury Cemetary in West London has many Polish graves, including my grandparents, and also Katyn Memorial to remember all those Polish officers murdered by the Russians in WWII
BubbaWoo 33 | 3,512
2 Nov 2007  #19
if you look closely with squinty half closed eyes you can just make out the ghostly flickering figure of PJPII in the third candle from the bottom left... or is it QEII... cant be sure...
Grzegorz_ 51 | 6,163
2 Nov 2007  #20
You've got any problem with that, infidel ?
ShelleyS 14 | 2,893
2 Nov 2007  #21
if you look closely with squinty half closed eyes you can just make out the ghostly flickering figure of PJPII in the third candle from the bottom left... or is it QEII... cant be sure...

or maybe a dolphin? :)

You've got any problem with that, infidel ?

C'on doggie, where is your sense of humour.....
Polonius3 1,000 | 12,448
31 Oct 2009  #22
Oct 31, 09, 23:15 - Thread attached on merging:
Non-Poles on Polish All Saint/All Souls observances?

What do the non-Poles on PF think of Polish All Saints/All Souls observances?
Have you ever seen a Polish cemetery on those feast days at night?
Is this occasion celebrated in your home countries?
MareGaea 29 | 2,752
31 Oct 2009  #23
I personally have no opinion about Hallowe'en, however I can only speak for Dutch society and I have observed that it's been promoted pretty much lately, even though it's never been a Dutch tradition. I guess the biggest drive behind the introduction of Hallowe'en is just a commercial one...

>^..^<

M-G (thinks one can count the number of ppl who actually know what Hallowe'en is all about on one hand - to most it's just a party where you dress up and talk about scary things)
SzwedwPolsce 11 | 1,595
1 Nov 2009  #24
Have you ever seen a Polish cemetery on those feast days at night?

It's beautiful, and it's a special feeling that is hard to describe.
I recommend to go and see it, especially to a big cemetery, it's a touching feeling.
Babinich 1 | 455
1 Nov 2009  #25
What do the non-Poles on PF think of Polish All Saints/All Souls observances?

I think it is a beautiful & moving tribute to the dearly departed.
wildrover 98 | 4,452
1 Nov 2009  #26
I would like to light a candle in memory of many lost friends,,,but they are all lost so far away...do Poles have a way of remembering those whose graves they cannot visit for various reasons...
Pinching Pete - | 558
1 Nov 2009  #27
It's beautiful, and it's a special feeling that is hard to describe

Not kidding around, (uhh for once) I really would like to experience this for myself in Poland. I'm going to Mass tomorrow even and I hardly ever go. This is one of the most important days for Catholics. Anyone actually if you'd like to participate.

Death isn't the end at all. Don't live your life thinking that way.
wildrover 98 | 4,452
1 Nov 2009  #28
I really would like to experience this for myself in Poland.

I am not a follower of religeon...but i got dragged to this ceremony by a Polish ladyfriend who was putting on a play with her children , she is a teacher....You would have to be pretty hard not to be moved by all this....I am going to go to one this year...just for the atmosphere...
Pinching Pete - | 558
1 Nov 2009  #29
You would have to be pretty hard not to be moved by all this....I am going to go to one this year...just for the atmosphere...

Yes man, I believe it, you're lucky. You don't have to be religious to get that feeling. I like that pic that Greg guy put on here.. I hope to see more like that. This is huge thing around the world. It's when you really remember those who aren't here anymore. The Old World had all kind of feast days for this and the Catholics have continued the tradition. It's an ancient vibe though.
Bzibzioh
1 Nov 2009  #30
do Poles have a way of remembering those whose graves they cannot visit for various reasons...

You can go to any cemetery and lit the candle around the cross like on that Greg's picture. And say a prayer for the souls you'd like to celebrate.


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