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St. Stanislaus B & M Parish - West Warren MA

A parish history from the 1963 Jubilee Book

The Polish people came to Warren and West Warren during the latter part of the 19th century. Seeing the need of unity and looking to the future, the still existing society, under the patronage of St. Stanislaus B. M., was organized in 1910. This society served as a nucleus of future efforts to organize and found a parish.

During the first few years the small group of Poles attended St. Paul's churchin Warren and St. Thomas Aquinas church in West Warren. Polishspeaking priests from nearby towns occasionally visited to administer to the spiritual needs of the Polish community. As with other immigrants language was a barrier.

First Clergy

Among the first priests who visited the two towns were missionary priests. The list includes the Reverends F. Chalupka, W. Lenc, Q. Fuks, Oswald Loretan, and others.

In 1913, the late Rev. Valerian Fligier, who just arrived from West Virginia, came to West Warren. Young, capable, and ambitious, Father Fligier immediately set himself to the task of visiting the Polish people.

A special committee was organized. Peter Trzepacz rendered valuable assistance to the young priest, Fr. Fligier.

The newlyorganized committee and Father Fligier requested the late Bishop Beayen's permission to organize a parish. Members of the committee included Andrew Jamorski, Frank Szczygiel, Martin Misiaszzek, Peter Trzepacz, and Fr. Fligier.

Permission was granted by Bishop Beayen and Fr. Fligier was assigned as the first pastor of St. Stanislaus B. M. parish, which was to serve the Polishspeaking people in West Warren and Warren. The year was 1913.

Father Fligier rented the first floor of the present rectory as his home.

Encouraging Results

Father Fligier immediately visited every home of the new settlers, seeking financial assistance and cooperation to found the parish and to prepare for construction of a parish church. Results of his efforts were encouraging. When Fr. Fligier assumed new duties as pastor of St. John Cantius' parish in Northampton, the Rev. Joseph Lekston continued his work. Father Lekston bought the present rectory building. Immediate steps were taken by him to collect money for construction of the new church. However, his stayhere was brief because Bishop Beaven needed him for a well established parish of St. Stanislaus B. M., South Deerfield.

The third pastor of St. Stanislaus B. M. parish in West Warren was the Rev. John Zaszczezynski. After two agonizing setbacks, with numerous and varied difficulties to overcome, Father Zaszczezynski succeeded and his efforts and those of the Polish people were crowned with the construction of the present church edifice. The Bruno Wozny architectural firm of Springfield drew plans. Within a few weeks the general contract was granted to S. Roy & Son Co. of Springfield.

Blessed in 1917

The new church was blessed in 1917 and the first Mass was celebrated by Fr. Zaszczezynski on Christmas Day. After eight years of hard work, Father Zaszczezynski took his first vacation and visited his homeland in Europe.

During his absence the parish was under the guidance of the LaSallette Fathers. Fathers Zener and Sajek administered the parish.

Pastor Injured

The return of Fr. Zaszczezynski to the parish was also the end of his devoted service to the people of Warren and West Warren. Shortly after returning to the parish he was on his way to a funeral in Northampton. Severely and permanently injured in an automobile accident, he had to resign. Again visiting priests administered to the needs of the people.

New Pastor

In 1925 the late Bishop Thomas M. O'Leary appointed Rev. Stanislaus Feresz as pastor. The latter served the parish until 1929 when he was named pastor of Holy Rosary parish in Hadley.

On July 6, 1929 the late Rev. Julius Jaworek was named pastor of St. Stanislaus B. M. parish in West Warren and remained here until his death, Sept. 1, 1952.

On October 8, 1952, Rev. Charles J.Chwalek, then curate of St. Joseph's parishin Webster, was appointed pastor of the parish. From the time of the death of Fr.Jaworek, the Rev. Joseph Niedzwiecki, assistant to Father Taworek, served as administrator.

Parish Hall Built

During the pastorate of Father Chwalek, repairs and improvements were made in the church building and a parish hall was built. Many of the materials were donated. Most of the labor was furnished by the parishioners. Father Chwalek had plans for otherprojects and improvements when he was appointed pastor of Our Lady of Czestochowa parish in Worcester.

His successor was the Rev. Alexander Struczko, who died in the rectory less than three years after becoming pastor. He was succeeded by the Rev. Peter J. Samorajski, who in turn was succeeded by the Rev. Casimir A. Swiacki.

During 1962 the church and rectory were covered with aluminum siding. The present pastor, the Rev. John P. Kochanowski, came to the parish January 15, 1963.

Well Established

The parish in West Warren is now well established. After 50 years of existence, this parish just as others founded by immigrants, faces a normal period of transition, making necessary improvements to theneeds of its members.

Immediately after the Golden Jubilee celebrations work started on necessary improvements. The church interior will be completely renovated and decorated; Other work, recommended by heating and lighting engineers, will be carried out.

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Last Updated on October 20, 2011