Warsaw cardinal laments ‘desecration’ of Christ statue with rainbow flag
A Polish cardinal has urged protesters to respect religious sensibilities after they attached a rainbow flag to a historic statue of Christ in Warsaw, which depicts Christ carrying the cross and pointing to the sky, sits on a plinth inscribed with the words “Sursum corda” (Lift up your hearts) - a message that has encouraged Poles during some of the darkest times in their history.
In a statement published on the Polish bishops’ conference website July 29, Cardinal Kazimierz Nycz deplored the protesters’ decision to target the statue outside Holy Cross Church on Krakowskie Przedmieście, one of the city’s best-known streets.
Placed outside the church in 1858, the statue, which depicts Christ carrying the cross and pointing to the sky remained standing during the Warsaw Uprising in 1944. The Nazis, who destroyed up to 90% of the city’s buildings in response to the Uprising, eventually toppled the statue.
A photograph from the time shows the broken statue lying amid rubble with its finger pointed to the “Sursum Corda” inscription above, which was seen as a sign of God’s providence amid the Nazi occupation.
Nycz, the Metropolitan Archbishop of Warsaw, said: “The desecration of the historic statue of Christ ‘Sursum corda’ at Krakowskie Przedmieście in Warsaw caused pain to believers, parishioners of the Holy Cross Church and many residents of the capital, for whom the statue of the Savior carrying the cross became a symbol of hope in the most difficult days of the Uprising.”
Featured picture shows Poland’s Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki praying at the foot of the statue on July 29.
In a statement on his Twitter account, he wrote: “There is no consent to profaning national and religious symbols in the name of any ideology. The values they symbolize, important to millions of Poles, are a heritage that is subject to special protection”
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