Order. Discipline. Brotherhood. Greatness.

On John Paul II’s 75th Anniversary

By any worldly measure, 1946 was an
annus horribilis
in Poland. With the exceptions of Cracow and Lodz, every Polish city lay in ruins. The homeless and displaced numbered in the millions. As a ruthless Stalinism tightened its grip on a country that had been doubly decimated during World War II, losing 20 percent of its pre-war population, heroes of the anti-Nazi resistance were executed on spurious charges by Poland’s new communist overlords. Yet in the oft-puzzling ways of providence, that Polish
annus horribilis
was also an
annus mirabilis
in which the seeds of a far brighter future were planted. 

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