A Polish children's choir stole the show at the Catenian annual Polish evening in Osterley, west London last night.
The youngsters from Schola Swiatlo, (The School of Light), at St Andrew's Bobola's Church in Hammersmith, gave a beautiful performance - singing praise songs with charm and gusto - before the delicious Polish dinner.
The principal guest was Bro David Rowley from Derby Circle, Grand Vice President of the Catenians and Bro Mariusz Twomey, President of Osterley Circle who organised the event.
Guest speaker, Mr Wlodek Mier-Jedrzejowicz, President of the Federation of Poles in Great Britain, said this year was particularly significant as it marked the 1,050th anniversary of the conversion of Poland to Christianity - an unusual number, perhaps - but he pointed out that in 1966 it had been difficult to celebrate the 1000th anniversary in Poland because at that time the country was under Communist rule. More than 25,000 Poles had attended an historic Polish Millennium Mass in White City stadium, he recalled.
Mr Mier-Jedrzejowicz said: "We are at home in Britain and feel at home with an organisation like the Catenians who have given us such a warm welcome."
Mr Twomey also spoke about the growing links between the Catenians and the Polish community. He said he and his wife had recently visited Poland and were very impressed at the number of young people actively involved in many church events.
The meal concluded with a special Karpatka cake - a desert which was a favourite of Saint Pope John Paul II - and a stirring rendition of Sto Lat (One Hundred Years) - the traditional song that expresses good wishes, good health and long life to a person and the Polish national anthem.
The Catenians are building strong links with the Polish community in Britain. This summer they will be supporting a stall at Krakow World Youth Day.
Formed in 1908, he Catenian Association, is a worldwide social organisation for Catholic professional men who support young people and encourage their involvement in voluntary projects. For more information see: www.thecatenians.com/
See also ICN 3 May 2016 - Cardinal Nichols leads Mass celebrating 1050th anniversary of arrival of Christianity in Poland www.indcatholicnews.com/news.php?viewStory=29981