I would like to introduce a priest friend of mine to you – a priest from a far distant land. Fr Alosza Miciński lives and works in Kazakhstan.
How did we come to meet? I would say our first meeting was entirely due to the Providence of God. In 2010 Fr Alosza first came as a young brother accompanying an older confrere. This older confrere – Fr Biernasz – was a friend of one of the local GP’s – DR Irena Karwowska – in my last parish. It was suggested that Alosza make an appeal in the parish for funds for his mission in Kazakhstan. As PP in Bury I agreed to such a request and we struck up a friendship that lasts till today.
I say that our meeting was Providential because Alosza doesn’t speak a word of English so it meant communication would be difficult at times. He preached his missionary appeal for the first time in my parish in Polish and I was able to read a translation for the parishioners. When we spoke with each other we communicated in Italian.
From our first meeting our friendship has grown and he has been able to share with me and the parishioners of my last parish some of the joys and difficulties of being a missionary in far flung country as Kazakhstan.
Like us in England it is winter in Kazakhstan. However, we may be tempted to moan when there’s a few flakes of snow on the ground and a bit of a wind. Fancy trying to live and work in temperatures of -35 degrees. Not an easy situation to be in especially when the living accommodation is not really fir for purpose.
During the time that I known Fr Alosza I have seen the improvements that he has made to his missionary station. This has all been possible due to the kindness of parishioners in the parishes in which I have served and through me they have got to know Alosza.
In 2017 I was fortunate enough to make a visit to Kazakhstan and see for myself the many places and project that Father has spoken about. The first thing that struck me was the sheer size of the country. Our trip from Astana – the capital – where the airport is located is a short trip of 9 hours by car to the mission station. In winter these roads become full of snow and ice, thus making travel even more dangerous.
Unfortunately, due to the Coronavirus a lot of our activities have had to be curtailed or even stopped completely. This has meant that Alosza has not been able to visit me in my new appointment in this parish. Hopefully that will happen one day in the future.
If you would like to know a little more about Fr Alosza and his mission in Kazakhstan then please visit his website: www.holyfamily.marianie.com
A bit of frost and snow gathers around the presbytery door
The frost even attacks the internal doors!!!
The roads are not much better!
Some of the parishioners walk 5km each way to attend Mass!