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In connection with the upcoming 100th anniversary of the birth of John Paul II, the Institute of National Remembrance would like to present a portal on the pastoral visits of Polish Pope John Paul II to his homeland during the Polish People’s Republic.

The main page : pielgrzymki.ipn.gov.pl will lead you to information on all three pilgrimages of Pope John Paul II to Poland in 1979, 1983 and 1987.

On the IPN’s portal devoted to Papal pilgrimages to the homeland, we present digital copies of documents constituting the archival legacy of the activities of the communist Security Services, descriptions of the various stages of the pilgrimages, photographs (taken both by the Security Services as part of official activities, as well as photos from private collections), links to historical and educational articles, leaflets, copies of the Polish community press and many other archival memorabilia of John Paul II's visits.

The collected materials constitute not only a unique testimony of those times, the social moods and details of the activities of the communist services, but also proof of the high hopes and expectations Poles placed in the Pope, who was always supported his compatriots in difficult times. We have prepared a special section for English-language readers, in which all three pilgrimages have been described.




Portals regarding the first and third pastoral visits were made available to the public in 2017 and 2019. Apart from updating and developing them further, we have also added materials on the Pope’s visit of 1983 (the second pilgrimage).

The arrival of John Paul II to Poland in 1983 was particularly important for Polish society experiencing the repression of Martial Law. The Pope gave Poles faith and hope. He always emphasized that evil should be overcome with good. The Security Services and the authorities of communist Poland, having experience of the visit of John Paul II in 1979, knew that the Holy Father’s meetings greatly exceeded their religious dimension. We recommend reading the introduction to the portal authored by Rafał Łatka Ph.D. : "Do not lose hope", a collection of photos from the IPN Archive, descriptions of the various stages of the pilgrimage, namely Warsaw, Niepokalanów, Częstochowa, Poznań, Katowice, Wrocław, Góra św. Anny and Cracow.

The pielgrzymki.ipn.gov.pl portal is one of many initiatives regarding the anniversary of the birth of John Paul II which you will be able to view online. On Monday, 18 May  2020, we invite you to a press conference with the participation of the President of the Institute of National Remembrance Jarosław Szarek Ph.D, on the presentation of the „W Wadowicach wszystko się zaczęło…” [It all began in Wadowice…] portal prepared by the IPN, Cracow Branch in cooperation with "Gość Niedzielny".






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