In the summer of 2008 I traveled to Poland, while traveling by bus from the beautiful city of Krakow/Cracow to Warsaw, we made a brief stop in the small city of Wadowice, Poland. The town of Wadowice received a lot of exposure this past weekend, because Pope John Paul II was canonized into sainthood by Pope Francis.
Karol J. Wojtyla, known as John Paul II was born in Wadowice, a small city 50 kilometres from Krakow/Cracow, on May 18, 1920. He lived around the corner from the Basilica of St. Mary's where he was baptised, confirmed, served as an altar boy and attended daily mass.
The Basilica of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Wadowice, Poland.
The original brick church was built in 1440, a fire in 1726 destroyed a large part of the building. It was rebuilt from 1792-1798 the neo-baroque facade and tower were built by architect Tomasz Prylinski who was from Krakow/Crakow.
Pope John Paul II visited the church several times during his papacy, he granted the church the title of a minor basilica.
The clock tower of the basilica has an onion domed cupola with clocks visible from every direction.
It's a large church with columns and arches, painted ceilings, statues, and photographs of Pope John Paul II visits to the church. The church has one wide nave and two side aisles with beautiful side altars.
On the left aisle of the church sits the baptismal fount that was used on June 20, 1920 for Karol Josef Wojtyla baptism aka Pope John Paul II now Saint Pope John Paul II.
The chapel of Our Lady of Perpetual Help is behind black railings, This painting was blessed by John Paul II during his visit in 1999. The original painting is housed in Rome.
Rosaries left in thanksgiving for prayers answered cascaded down from the surrounding wall of Our Lady of Perpetual Help chapel.
This statue of Pope John Paul II stands right next to the church it is known as 'The Cream Cake Statue.'
During John Paul's visit to Wadowice in 1992, he sat very near to this spot and reminisced about his early life in the town. He mentioned how, he enjoyed kremowki, cream cake which they bought from a certain shop which he pointed to. What a horrid photo of me, but such a wonderful memory.
This is the shop that he pointed to during that visit. Since my visit in 2008 I was told this shop has been torn down.
In 2008, the cost of one square of kremowki was 2.50 zloty.
That was before they converted to the Euro.
Many other places in the area sell this delicious cream cake.
Located at 7 Koscielna Street, right next door to the church is the childhood home of John Paul II, which is now a museum.
We had such a limited time in Wadowice, that I was unable to visit the inside of the museum.
This morning I am going over to a friends and we are going to attempt to make a kremowki, cream cake. It will either be a triumph or an epic failure, either way visit me tomorrow for the results and the recipe.