St. Casimir

Tucked into Youngstown's Brier Hill - a neighborhood and home for multiple ethnicities over the generations - sits St. Casimir's Parish from 1907.

St. Casimir Church & Outdoor Shrine
145 Jefferson Street
P.O. Box 2209
Youngstown, Ohio 44505

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145 Jefferson St

The Black Madonna Project
St. Columba Cathedral Welcomes Polish Madonna Shrine

 “You'll find quiet in her arms and you'll find shelter from the evil, 'Cause she has a tender heart for all of her children.”
                                                                    --Czarna Madonna

In every Polish church there is a reproduction of the Black Madonna. When Poles emigrated, they brought their devotion to the Mother of God with them, creating home altars and innumerable churches, chapels, and shrines in her honor. A special place is always reserved for her.

PolishYoungstown now is embarking on an effort to do the same.  In this time of change and consolidation, Bishop George Murry has generously offered to allow us to renovate the St. Columba Cathedral baptistery into a shrine to Our Lady of Częstochowa.

How can you help?

The cathedral parish has assumed the cost of repairing the plaster and painting the shrine. The Polish community will be responsible for acquiring the artwork, kneelers, candleholders and explanatory plaques.  Cost estimates are in the thousands of dollars. Donations from the Polish Day mass offertory collection and other donations have given us an $800 start, but we need your help to raise the estimated $8,000 necessary to reach our goal.

Contributions are being accepted as direct offerings to the “Madonna Project” as well as memorial and gift donations in honor of friends and family. All contributors will be acknowledged at the dedication ceremony. Significant donations will be recognized on a plaque at the shrine.

To honor and implore the Blessed Mother’s assistance in these efforts, PolishYoungstown, in conjunction with its umbrella parishes, are offering up a Novena to Our Lady of Częstochowa in October. Part of its Polish American Heritage Month activities and with the various priests’ help, the group has created a celebration that can be done independently or in organized groups. The novena booklet will be available in the church vestibules and for downloading here. 

The organized group novena will begin October 19th at Sts. Peter and Paul and then move to related parishes all over the region. A complete schedule is available here.

The devotion will conclude with a mass and service with several of our Polish and related priests as well as the St. Stanislaus Polish Choir at St. Columba Cathedral on October 27th. A seasonally inspired reception will follow.

If you are not able or interested in the actual novena, PolishYoungstown team members ask that you join in saying just the short novena prayer daily during this nine-day period as a way to join with the entire Youngstown community in prayer and thanksgiving to Mary this month.

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