Before get downing we would wish to take into account several things. As the history of Poland and peculiarly function of Church and faith in Polish political relations can be traced centuries back and are profoundly routed in history, we would wish to acknowledge that the period that is reviewed and analyzed in this essay is anyhow immense. Therefore, the chief disadvantage of this paper can be the fact that because of the length of service of the analyzed period essay may take more general characteristic and there will be no possibility to travel deeper into some of the issues. Consequently some parts will be more generalised so the other. But on the other manus the facts that we think is the most influential during this period would be analyzed deeper and in broader context, so to avoid excessively huge generalisation.
This paper is an effort to show the function of faith and peculiarly Church in Polish political relations and to see the really soul and spirit of Polish people as such through the function of Catholic Church and faith in their lives and the influence of it in political relations during post-soviet resurgence and democratisation of people ‘s heads up to presents. We will seek to analyse what portion Church plays in nowadays political relations and seek to happen out if it interferes or touches upon political issues. And if it does, in which domains and in what manner it is directed?
As we have already noted, the symbolism of Polish Church, its influence on and ties with people every bit good as with political relations is profoundly rooted in history and it is closely linked to the function that it played when Poland was occupied by different states.
We assume that really that what was maintaining people ‘s heads and souls together during divider period, or Soviet business was the Church and faith. ( Here we would wish to do comparing with the function of faith in Georgian history. Religion was ever the strongest keeper of spirit and individuality of Georgians. It was important during Ottomans ‘ business, who had terrible and barbarous methods of altering the faith in Georgia. Peoples were deceasing while protecting it. The faith and the Church was the chief factor for salvaging national individuality during communism and Soviet business, every bit good as it was in Poland ) .
From those times and onwards Church has played important function in Restoration of individuality and resurgence of democracy every bit good as it played really of import function in political relations after autumn of communism. The church, through Primate Jozef Cardinal Glemp and the other bishops, participates in the political procedure in order to progress the institutional involvements of the church itself ; “ to implant Catholic moral instruction into the cloth of Polish jurisprudence and public policy ; and to warn against the election of political campaigners whom the church deems antithetical to its ain involvements and to the involvements of the Polish state ” .
In this essay we will seek to touch upon such issues as the function of Poland in Reconstruction of individuality of people after the autumn of Soviet Union, what politic ties it had with authorities afterwards, what was its influence in transmutation period and how nowadays it is connected to political relations and what function it holds refering gender equality, peculiarly function and place of adult females in society.
The glimpse at the Church and its symbolism through history
As we underlined several times, the influence of Church ‘s place through history particularly throughout 19th century was huge. It was a symbol of stableness, the Centre of opposition against the encroachers. The expression “ Polish peers to Catholic ” was acquiring stronger and stronger. The Catholic Church appeared so as the lone national establishment typifying the free Poland prior to the divider ( Heinen and Matuchniak-Krasuska 1992 ; Heinen 2007 ) .
Another symbol of Polish opposition can be named “ Polish Mother ” intending female parent of God, Poland and of state ( Matka Polka, Matka Boska, Mater Polonia ) .
It had besides important function after the WWII, peculiarly in Pilsudki ‘s government. Universal right to vote and adult females ‘s right to vote was introduced back in 1918, but adult females were ne’er truly given important representation in Parliament ( non more than 5 % ) and the “ Torahs adopted with regard to work and pregnancy at that clip remained largely formal, with small impact on adult females ‘s existent lives ” .
Under the Communist government as we all are concerned the faith and all the spiritual positions were banned and improper. But in malice of all the efforts of the government to discredit the faith, it, on the contrary, enhanced its popularity and beef uping. Particularly the expressway of Church ‘s popularity came to 1970 when it took the place of the refinisher of civil autonomies and was really much influenced by the celebrated address of Cardinal WysziA„ski and his place.
It became even more obvious during the mass motion of free independent trade brotherhood SolidarnoA›A‡ which besides was closely linked to the Church during 1970 ‘s – 1980 ‘s. Both, the Church and the motion, held really traditional positions about function of adult females ( “ woman-mother ” ) and had strong conservative premises about moral values ( strongly symbolized by its president, Lech Walesa, have oning a image of the black Virgin of Czestochowa in his buttonhole-lauded by the Catholic Church ( Heinen, Porte 2009 ) .
In the post-communist epoch, faith started to reenforce more power as the faith classs were introduced in schools and the priests were given stronger place in the educational system when gained position of instructors.
All these factors viewed through historical prism gives the Church strong stance in the political treatments and in civil society every bit good, particularly in the countries correlated to the private domain, which were the most delicate during those times.
Religion, Church and national individuality under Communist government
Here we must advert that despite Marxist political orientation of making the perfect socialistic society where all corporate individualities of the old societies supposed to vanish and give manner to “ development of category individuality and later its disintegration in the classless society ” , in pattern, the political orientation and political relations of Communist government constructed in the provinces the image of societal administration and the theoretical account of corporate individuality harmonizing to national standards.
Soviet orbiter provinces were organised after 1945 as nation-states, and a great attempt was made to do them ethnically homogeneous, or to construct them in such a manner that their cultural composing would be clear and would represent the chief footing of individuality formation. One may recognize that in the effort to construct the post-war Soviet imperium national and cultural factors were used as instruments of use and control. Each of the satellite Central and Eastern European states either had some internal cultural jobs, and existent or possible tensenesss and struggles with neighboring provinces based on cultural issues ( Mach, 2000 ) ; ( in Georgia: struggle with Abkhazia and South Ossetia ) .
These chauvinistic premises grew quickly. Such political organisation conformed to the prevailing chauvinistic position of societal organisation within Central and Eastern European societies at those times, nucleus thought of which held that each cultural group should hold its ain political organisation in order to protect its ain involvements, national individuality, civilization and resources from other “ different ” civilizations ( Mach, 2000 ) . Harmonizing to such position every state develops strong sense of distinction from “ others ” and is seeing itself as different and alone cultural unit, cultural group which develops its political individuality through modernisation, societal mobilisation, instruction, ought to make its ain crowned head province ( Gellner 1983, Smith, 1986 ) . In our sentiment this factor could be one of the important 1s lending in the diminishment of the Soviet Communist government and its eventual prostration. Therefore in this procedure of national individuality building the topographic point of Church is cardinal and indispensable.
In Eastern Europe during communist period Roman Catholic Church was perceived as anti-state force, which was viewed as the mechanism opposing the Communist transmutation of society. In Poland in the early old ages of communism Church enjoyed a comparative liberty. The Roman Catholic Church was viewed as supreme leader of “ anti-communist resistance and the leader of state ” ; Church had a great trade of support and strengthened by being the lone establishment independent from province and by its “ designation with Polish national involvements ” . Thus the Church was making integrity among the society members by designation with The Polish, Roman Catholic state with its Church opposed to that of unbelieving, communist province. This rule of integrity had an tremendous importance in building Polish national individuality as Roman Catholic Church pictured its nexus with the thought that “ Catholicism for centuries had been the kernel of Polishness and hence the Church became the national establishment, the nucleus component of the state ‘s individuality ” ( Mach, 2000 ) . And in this sense the moral monopoly of the Church would non be the effort of the striping people of their right to take, but the logical effect of the historical development of integrity of the state and its religion ( Mach, 2000 ) .
If we stick to the historically political context of the procedure we can detect how the Church was working during the government. As we have already noted, during the first two post-war old ages, Church enjoyed comparative liberty. However, during Stalin ‘s regulation the repressions of the Church began by shuting the spiritual seminaries and arrogation of church ‘s private belongings in the name of the province. And in 1948 province abolished the covenant and took legal domination over all spiritual organisations. However, in the undermentioned old ages the Church adopted new scheme of non-confrontation ( intending no unfastened confrontation ) and via media with the province over most issues. Between 1948 and 1981, the church was led by Cardinal Stefan Wyszynski, an expert on Catholic societal philosophy “ whose dominating personality augmented the power of the church hierarchy as a direct conduit from the Vatican to the people of Poland. As a general policy in the early Communist decennaries, Wyszynski avoided bootless direct candidacy against communist subjugation. Alternatively, he stressed the church ‘s function as advocator of Christian morality. Nevertheless, the cardinal ‘s unfavorable judgment of PZPR party leader Boleslaw Bierut earned Wyszynski three old ages under house apprehension ( 1953-56 ) , every bit good as international stature as a spokesman against communism. During this period, a sum of 1,000 priests and eight bishops were imprisoned, and convents were raided by the constabulary in the Communist thrust to destruct wholly the authorization of the church in Polish society ” .
Wyszynski was released in 1956 as a consequence of terrible societal agitation that forced a alteration in party leading. After this release, the undermentioned church-state understanding significantly smoothening limitation in countries of spiritual instruction and legal power over church belongings marked a general softening of the hardline Stalinism spiritual policy at the last old ages of its bing. Ten old ages subsequently we can see church ‘s jubilation of the millenary of Polish Christianity which strengthened the designation of Polish “ national consciousness ” with the church.
During 1970ies the new “ reform ” government of Edward Gierek took pacifying steps for church support. Church these times was going more and more cognizant of its leading place during this clip of societal agitation. Between 1971 and 1974, the church demanded the constitutional right to form spiritual life and civilization in Poland, utilizing instruction establishments, spiritual groups, and the mass media ( Glenn E. Curtis, 1992 ) . Then followed the Church ‘s support of worker ‘s public violences on nutrient monetary values ( by and large meat ) and what is most of import in our position the the choice of Cardinal Karol Wojtyla of Krakow as Catholic Pope in 1978.
The part of the Roman Catholic Church to the devastation of communism is immense and can non be overestimated. The election of the Bishop of Krakow as Pope merely added to this function of the Church. The Pope became a symbol of anti-communist Church. He besides was a life cogent evidence that even under communist domination a society led by the Church could bring forth a personality whose independency, unity, mind and moral strength made him a suited campaigner for pontificate – the highest office in the Church and one of the taking places in the western, Latin, non-communist universe ( Mach, 2000 ) . So the Pope was a symbol of national independency and strength. He besides symbolised the nexus between Eastern Europe and the West, the relation which the Communist province tried difficult to do their societies to bury ( Kubik, 1994: 130-146 ) . In 1979 the triumphal visit of Pope John Paul II to Poland boosted the Polish cultural self-image and turned international attending to Poland ‘s political and religious battles ( Glenn E. Curtis, 1992 ) . John Paul II ‘s primary function in the historic transmutation of European political relations was to incarnate the failure of communism to enforce itself on the Black Marias of Poles and other Central Europeans ( T.A.Byrnes, 1996 ) . His pontificate period symbolized the endurance of culturally and socially independent Poland despite more than three decennaries of Soviet-imposed communist regulation ( Byrnes, 1996 ) .
As we can detect apart from cardinal parts to smooth individuality building, the Church was actively involved in political discourse. Furthermore, it was closely linked to the Solidarity motion and had the most influential moral support for its members. In 1981 the authorities requested that the church aid it to set up a duologue with worker cabals. Necessitating church blessing to derive support among the people, the authorities revived the Joint Episcopal and Government Commission, through which the church bit by bit regained legal position in the early 1980s.
Through the whole scope of Church ‘s activity during the abovementioned period we can see the graphic line through the rule of conveying integrity to the Polish society, which was constructed in the bipolar manner of opposing the communism and the Communists as non-believers on one side by Polish Catholic Church state from the other. But we should non go forth aside the fact that this rule of integrity alienated all those who were non Catholic. The few staying cultural minorities felt pushed outside the constructed image of the Polish state, as were the non-believers, the atheists who were often identified with Communists ( Mach, 2000 ) .
But to look from political affair, in our sentiment, 1980-81 was the important minute, peculiarly the activism of the Church in mediation between the Soviet authorities and the Solidarity motion leaders. We have in position the missive from the Episcopate to the parish clergy of Poland in 1981. It was issued on 11th of March, 1981, and was sent to every priest in Poland, in order for them to go through the massage to their fold. Of class, non every priest has taken a missive dependably, but some has openly defined and passed on the message. This papers provides a point of entry into the controversial issue of the Church ‘s stance in 1980 and 1981. The purpose of the missive was simple: to maintain Solidarity motion from any aggressive actions which could endanger the societal order and public peace. Particularly critical minutes were during work stoppages in 1980 ‘s, so bishops were concerned about the possibility of Soviet invasion if Solidarity would do a move towards use of force, which would take to tremendous mass casualties. “ At the same clip, they understood that the Church enjoyed tremendous regard in Poland in the early 1980s exactly because it constituted the one public infinite independent of Communist control, and that people looked to the Church for protection and safety ” .
The terminal of communism, to which the Roman Catholic Church and the Polish Catholic Church accordingly contributed so much, brought a dramatic alteration for this powerful establishment, which we will analyse farther in this paper.
The Church in Poland after the autumn of Soviet Union and Communism
As we have already underlined above the Polish Catholic Church deserves to hold great trade of attending when speaking about Polish political relations of any period of Poland ‘s history. It has ever enjoyed an tremendous acknowledgment “ for supplying rational dissenters a topographic point to run into with each other and with unsated workers. The Solidarity motion, born in the aftermath of John Paul II ‘s first visit to his fatherland, brought to the history of dissent against communism a new and decisive quality ” .A
And as we have already stressed, the methods of Communist system to contend the faith were more or less the same throughout the provinces, the tactics of Church varied from state to state ; “ A decisive factor was the type of socialization of religion in the society, an facet of long-run historical development. ” Particular attending deserves Polish Catholic Church as it symbolized the carrier of the national individuality of Polish society. Cardinal WyszynskiA is seen as moral leader at the clip when the state had no legitimate political leader ( Halik, 1996 ) . “ The Polish Church managed to associate the popular faith of the multitudes with the advanced idea of the Catholic rational elites, influenced by Gallic personalism, Thomism, and phenomenology: this was the environment that produced Karol Wojtyla. Poland has ever been drawn to its Church at times of national menace. The rise of Stalinism reawakened this inherent aptitude and the Church became a power that even the Polish Communist government had to esteem ” ( Thomas Halik, 1996 ) .
So the old ages after the autumn of Soviet Union and communism, the Polish Catholic Church continues to play a really active function in Polish political relations. But its tactics and attack to the Polish province in this period changed drastically ; it greatly redefined its function after 1989.
In post-communist system Church got strong political power due to shut ties with Solidarity motion, its function in advancing resistance positions, and its mediation between cabals in 1980 ‘s.
In 1989 the Church was seen by many public organisations as its strongest ally and spouse in doing determinations. “ One consequence of this designation was that when the Sejm began deliberations on a new fundamental law in 1990, the Episcopate requested that the papers virtually get rid of the separation of church and province Such a alteration of constitutional doctrine would set the authorization of the province behind such spiritual warrants as the right to spiritual instruction and the right to life get downing at construct ( hence a prohibition on abortion ) ” ( Glenn E. Curtis, 1992 ) .
To compare, during communist government, such separation of church and the province was the footing of church ‘s refusal to acknowledge the authorization of atheist political government over religious life and ecclesiastical activities. Now, in warranting its new stances towards separation, the Church claimed that “ that the Communist governments had discredited the philosophy as a constitutional foundation for post-communist administration by utilizing the separation of church and province to support their totalitarian control of society against church intervention ” ( Glenn E. Curtis, 1992 ) .
Again as a political affair, such growing of Church ‘s power started to distribute fright among population ; an influence of the Church in public life during the period while go throughing the measure on the Restoration of freedom of faith, made some parts of population highly alienated. Catholic intellectuals have opposed the bossy regulation of Cardinal Wyszynski. Peoples had a fright that the official province church would be established in effect of such via medias between communist province and the church. And after the Communist system collapsed in1989, such frights revived and spread to different parts of Polish society.
In the undermentioned old ages church introduced faith instructions in public schools and what is more of import about straight after the alteration of government, the Church started to press for abrogation of the abortion jurisprudence of 1956. It stood wholly against abortion and insisted on legalisation of its prohibition. “ Between 1990 and 1992, church force per unit area brought three increasingly tighter limitations on birth control and abortion, although studies showed that about 60 per centum of Poles backed freedom of single pick on that issue ” ( Glenn E. Curtis, 1992 ) .
Poland ‘s return to Europe
We think that this is the part- the Europeanisation of Poland- where we should above all underline the function of Church in this March of Poland towards Europe, particularly the function of Pope John Paul II and other Catholic leaders of that clip.
John Paul II ‘s primary function in the historic transmutation of European political relations was to incarnate the failure of communism to enforce itself on the Black Marias of Poles and other Central Europeans.
Equally early as his first pilgrim’s journey to Poland in 1979, Pope John Paul II was already naming for the re-establishment of a “ Christian Europe ” and already stressing the cardinal function that the Polish people could play in that undertaking ( Timothy A.Byrnes, 1996 ) .
And since the autumn of the Soviet government, the Pope has even more strongly emphasized his vision of the “ new epoch in Christian Europe ” and had smartly defended the right of Poland to come in this brotherhood:
“ We [ Poles ] have a right to be in and to develop among other states, harmonizing to our ain individuality, standing on the land of what we ourselves worked out during this hard phase of history. We have the right particularly because others look at the Polish manner, sometimes critically, but frequently with hope ” .
In fact, the right of Poland to take part in “ Europe ” on its ain footings was a major subject of the Pope ‘s first visit to post-communist Poland ( Timothy A.Byrnes, 1996 ) .A
But the Pope was non the lone Catholic Church leader to talk up for the manner towards Europe.
Besides Cardinal Jozef Glemp ( the replacement of Cardinal Wyszinski ) and other leaders frequently spoke against the secular tendencies in Poland and the right of Poland to populate and fall in the Europe on its ain footings. All of them were stressing cultural and religious peculiarity of Poland. They were cautious in their addresss and against hotfooting excessively fast into the Europe. For case, Glemp argued that come ining the European Union should be seen non merely from economic angle but most significantly must be seen as “ moral issue ” and that Poles should be cognizant of the possible menace of for their national individuality that can be brought by the fusion ( Byrnes, 1996 ) . But it does n’t intend that Cardinal Glemp and other leaders were recommending a sort of isolation from Western European states. In fact, they thought, like most Poles, that Poland is the cultural and historical portion of the West. What they really argued was that “ Poland should voyage its manner back to the European community without releasing either its Catholic individuality or its soi-disant evangelical mission. These spokesmen for the church position the period following the autumn of communism as an historic chance both to confirm Catholicism ‘s function in Polish society, and to confirm Catholic Poland ‘s proper function in European political relations and society. They do non desire to float toward Western secularism ; they want to construct a Catholic Poland that can in the long term service as a theoretical account for other states on both sides of the old Cold War boundary line ” :
“ Do non allow yourself acquire caught up by the civilisation of desire and ingestion. Is it civilisation or anti-civilization, a civilization or an anti-culture & lt ; aˆ¦ & gt ; ? We do non hold to come in Europe, because we helped to make it, and we did so with greater attempt than those who claim a monopoly on Europeanness. ”
Church and Europeanized Poland
Further progress of the Church ‘s activity is vividly seen in modern Poland. In late 90 ‘s and millenary we can see how Church is seeking to progress and protect its ain institutional involvement in Poland. Cardinal Glemp and other bishops are cognizant of the battle and the portion that Church took in it throughout the history to safe its establishment. Now they are seeking with new forces to do Church a dependable independent entity which can be a protection of Poland ‘s national life.
The leaders of the Church had actively taken portion in the dialogues with the authorities over the linguistic communication of the Polish fundamental law: “ At the centre of the difference has been the church ‘s expostulation to a constitutional preparation puting out a “ separation ” of church and province. The job for the bishops is that the old Communist Fundamental law of 1952 included the word “ separate ” in this context ” ( T. Byrnes, 1996 ) . So they were take a firm standing of the paraphrasing of the sentence.
Due to the fundamental law it appeared that church and the province are independent and independent from each other. It besides was mentioned before even confirmation of the Constitution that the relationship between the province and the church would be regulated due to the covenant by the Vatican- it was a formal nexus between the province and the church. This covenant ensured liberty of the Polish church and all its activities, besides care of dealingss and communications between Polish episcopate and the Vatican, spiritual categories at public schools, every bit good as commissariats regulating Christian matrimony and church building. For Cardinal Glemp and others this portion was the most important component, as it was seen to be legal protection of the Church ‘s function in the new, revived Poland.
Furthermore, even if due to the Constitution Poland stays as secular state, covenant declares that Catholicism is de facto faith of the province. The Concordat provides the Church with a set of ordinances aimed at protecting its place in society and above all among the immature coevals. Therefore, harmonizing to the Concordat the province commits to give every school kid in Poland the right to spiritual instruction at school every bit good as spiritual activities through young person cantonments and other such events.
1. Acknowledging parental rights with respect to the spiritual instruction of their kids, every bit good as the rules of tolerance, the State shall vouch that public simple and secondary schools, and besides nursery schools, shall be managed by civil administrative organisations or independent organic structures, shall set up, in conformance with the desire of interested parties, the instruction of faith within the model of an appropriate school or pre-school course of study.
2. The course of study for learning the Catholic faith, every bit good as the text editions used, shall be determined by ecclesiastical authorization and shall be made known to the relevant civil governments.
3. Teachers of faith must hold mandate ( missio canonica ) from their diocesan bishop. Withdrawal of this mandate signifies the loss of the right to learn faith.
aˆ¦For Catholic kids and immature people who take portion in summer vacation cantonments, immature people ‘s cantonments and other signifiers of corporate vacationing, spiritual pattern shall be guaranteed and, in peculiar, take parting in Holy Mass on Sundays and other holy yearss. ( aˆ¦ )
Besides Church appears to hold extremely influential function in the country of generative rights ; it exercises the control over the content of the sex instruction at schools. And we must stress that precisely the issue of generative rights, exactly the right for an abortion is the most heatedly debated and debatable issue within the relation of the Church, State and the EU, approximately which we will speak more elaborate subsequently.
Church is involved on, so called, “ European ” political relations as good, i.e. it plays a major function in enrolling seminarists at European degree and represents an indispensable bridging for the Vatican within the European diplomatic negotiations ( Heinen, 2009 ) . As the faith took an obligatory position, priest became ordinary instructors at schools. These issues were besides argued during the argument on the preamble of the Polish Constitution, since Polish representatives wanted European fundamental law to be similar to Polish. Here we have to emphasize several interrelated issues. Polish fundamental law recognizes “ freedom of scruples ” , but at the same clip it mentions God twice in the preamble ( Heinen, 2009 ) : “ Freedom of scruples and faith shall be ensured to everyone ” . In preamble we can see such definition of the society: “ those who believe in God as the beginning of truth, justness, good and beauty, every bit good as those non sharing such religions but esteeming those cosmopolitan values as originating from other beginnings ” . And about the relationship of the Church and State the Constitution references in the Article 25:
1. Churchs and other spiritual organisations shall hold equal rights.
2. Public governments in the Republic of Poland shall be impartial in affairs of personal strong belief, whether spiritual or philosophical, or in relation to outlooks on life, and shall guarantee their freedom of look within public life.
3. The relationship between the State and churches and other spiritual organisations shall be based on the rule of regard for their liberty and the common independency of each in its ain sphere, every bit good as on the rule of cooperation for the person and the common good.
4. The dealingss between the Republic of Poland and the Roman Catholic Church shall be determined by international pact concluded with the Holy See, and by legislative act.
5. The dealingss between the Republic of Poland and other churches and spiritual organisations shall be determined by legislative acts adopted pursuant to understandings concluded between their appropriate representatives and the Council of Ministers.
But despite all these “ respectful ” relationship between the State and the Church, covenant remains the footing of the more active function of the church in political relations ( particularly, as was mentioned, generative rights, which transformed into hot argument over adult females ‘s rights and gender equality issue in Poland ) .
To return to the issue of abortion we must underscore that in Poland it is both moral issue every bit good as index of tough societal struggles. During communist epoch abortion was wholly legal, but after the jurisprudence passed with the church ‘s verbal indorsement in 1993, it became harder to do it. Abortions were allowed merely in response to colza, incest, and foetal malformation or in the rare instances where transporting the gestation to term would endanger the life or physical wellness of the pregnant adult female itself ( Byrnes, 1996 ) . Abortions for “ hard personal fortunes ” or hardship though supported by a bulk of the population were made illegal. Harmonizing to a public sentiment canvass conducted in June, 1995 by the Center of Public Opinion Research, in instances of colza or incest 83 % of Poles support legal abortions ; 86 % if the gestation endangers the adult female ‘s wellness. Fifty-three per centum supported legal abortion if the adult female is in hard conditions or adversity, and 33 % support abortion as it is.
Further struggle over abortion can be seen throughout 90s. Cancelation of this 1993 abortion jurisprudence was strongly supported by Kwasniewski ‘s Democratic Left Alliance and subsequently in 1994 was vetoed by Walesa. But Polish Sejm was insistent of the cancelation of this jurisprudence and the abrogation was passed once more. The Church from its portion is contending with liberalisation with all the possible ways and resources it has. As we can see the abortion issue in this argument represents much more so merely an abortion ; it is besides about the ability of the Catholic Church to act upon public policy more by and large, and it is most basically about the hereafter of Polish society itself ( Byrnes, 1996 ) .A Legal and available abortion would run counter non merely to such place of Church but besides with the Pope ‘s undertaking of progressing the cause of European Christianity by and large through the consolidation of Polish Catholicism specifically ; this issue is an of import to the leaders of Polish Catholicism, non merely because those leaders believe such policies are morally right, but besides because “ they believe such policies are indispensable requirements to Poland ‘s playing its proper function in the European community of states ” ( Byrnes,1996 ) .
We hope that this paper at least by and large gave the model to understand what function Church has played throughout the analyzed old ages in Polish political relations and life of the society.
As we have observed, the Church has ever been actively or passively involved in political relations. Furthermore it was a “ moral shelter ” during adversities of the tough Polish history. Some scientists argue that nowadays it transformed more into cardinal establishment. . For Joanna Senyszyn, “ Poland is a state of Catholic fundamentalism. Bishops interfere in all life spheres and politicians give in most of the times under the force per unit area of the Church ” .
Despite of everything we can non disregard the fact that Polish Catholicism has no equality in other European societies if we take into history deepness of beliefs, the power of Church intercession into public, societal life and its wont to straight step in into political life of the province every bit good.
Chief Editor of Gazeta Wyborcza, Piotr Pacewicz, underlines the dramatic influence of the John Paul II ‘s figure. He says: “ The Catholic Pope was perceived as the inheritor of the tradition of independency against communism and as a personality of tolerance and of gap to other faiths. Although his thoughts on abortion were a affair of contention his authorization in the other Fieldss tended to barricade any unfastened difference on that ” ( 14.1.2008 ) .
After holding played a cardinal function in the argument over abortion, the Church in recent old ages become more cautious and milder with the intercession in political every bit good as societal resort area, and concentrated chiefly on moral inquiries. However, it remains one of the major histrions in the populace domain: in 2008, 93 % of the Poles declared themselves to be Catholics and trusters. Merely 6 % of Poles ne’er go to Church ; 52 % attend Church services at least one time a hebdomad ; 64 % say that the Church plays an indispensable function in the definition of their ain values. Pope John Paul II exercised a direct influence on the life of 80 % of the Poles ( CBOS 2005a ; CBOS 2005b ; CBOS 2008 ) ( Heinen, 2009 ) .
But despite these figures there is a graphic contradiction between what people say in sentiment polls and what influence really church has on their mundane life in pattern. Some studies has shown that 80 % of population, particularly immature population did non hold with the Church ‘s limitation in the sexual domain, and holding strictly individualistic attack to this issue, they think that Catholic priests should non order the sexual behaviour ( Szlendak, 2004 ) . The same contradiction can be seen refering abortion, as illustrated by the 10s of 1000 instances of belowground abortion.
Despite this, the Church remains the chief establishment for moral stances of the society with the dominant moral authorization ; as we have already mentioned above, although Poland is considered as secular province, the covenant has immense moral authorization over the society. To set last words, we would wish to show the sentiment of the sociologist Miroslawa Grabowska on Church ‘s power in Polish political relations and by and large in mundane life of ordinary people: “ ” The Catholic Church in Poland does non hold any political power but has a immense influence on power. This consequences from a really simple ground. As 90 % of Poles define themselves as Catholic, and about half of them are on a regular basis go toing mass, politicians would hold a short position if they did non think with the Church, as an establishment, and the legion trusters. The job is that there are different ways to think with the Church, and the Concordat is so general that different theoretical accounts of cooperation can be built on its footing ” ( Grabowska, 2008 ) .