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Save St. Casimir's Church

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Hello! I'd like to introduce myself. My name is Cecelia Pascucci and I am a member of St. Casimir's Church. I have started this GoFundMe to raise funds to keep this awe inspiring church open. All funds raised will be given directly to St. Casimir's to cover the monies needed to keep the Church open and allow them the time needed to return to being self-sufficient.Since St. Casimir's in unable to run a GoFundMe, I requested, and was grated, permission by Linda the financial committee leader to withdraw on their behalf and put all the donations towards the needs of St. Casimir's Church. This ensures your money is going directy to the bills that need to be covered to save this church. St. Casimir's, a Buffalo NY church that in 1976 hosted Cardinal Karol Wojtyla-who became globe-trotting Pope John Paul II and Saint John Paul II after his death-is the latest Catholic church in danger of being shut down because it can’t pay its bills.
This church is a Buffalo, NY landmark conceived by Fr. Anthony Majewski, with Buffalo architects Chester Oakley and Stanley Fronczak. This church is a multi-domed (7) architectural gem built in 1929 and is the first church in the United States with a Byzantine Romanesque design. Bishop Edward Kmieć named Saint Casimir’s the only free-standing church in the Diocese of Buffalo in 2011. It is not a parish and does not operate like one. It does not have parishioners. It has a core member group and friends that help contribute to its needs. It is all run by volunteers. No one is paid for services except the rector, Father Czesław Krysa. It is truly a one-of-a-kind structure. People come here for the weekly “five senses” worship experience that regularly features burning of incense, a true Gospel procession, bell ringing, and singing, ignored by most parishes. As a free-standing church, we are allowed one Mass per week, which hinders our opportunity for collections. Fundraisers help, but our building insurance is now $55,000 per year, plus maintenance needs. We could generate more revenue from “event worship”- special liturgies and other gatherings featuring processions, chanting, and other traditional rites offered nowhere else in the diocese, if more people knew about the offerings and experienced them firsthand.
Rev. Bryan Zielenieski, the diocese’s vicar for renewal, wrote in a letter that St. Casimir’s had a year to get its finances in order. It said that any financial obligations needed to be met by the end of August. We need to have at least $55,000 to pay the building insurance.
Aside from all that, this architectural wonder in itself, needs to be preserved. It is inspired by the early Byzantine basilicas, like the famed Hagia Sophia in Turkey. The church features a main dome, four smaller domes, and a half dome all shielded in ornamental terra cotta. It has extensive exterior terra cotta adornment, and interior murals by Marion Rezeznik. The stained glass windows throughout are designed by Franz Mayer of Germany. You could not build this today. It would be tens of millions of dollars. When Cardinal Wojtyla said Mass here in 1976 and spent the night, he was awestruck about this church. He loved it, even presenting the church with a beautiful oil painting of Our Lady of Częstochowa. He became pope in 1976 and was canonized a saint in 2014. That same year, St. Casimir Church opened the rectory bedroom suite where Wojtyla had stayed in 1976 and invites visitors inside for a glimpse. The diocese is not forgiving debt anymore. Either pay your bills or you’re going to get closed. To close this architectural treasure and sell it to perhaps another religion would be tragic. Please help us. Any amount will help!


  • Albert James
    • $70 
    • 13 hrs
  • Anonymous
    • $2,500 
    • 1 d
  • Anonymous
    • $50 
    • 10 d
  • Anonymous
    • $2,500 
    • 10 d
  • Eugenia Kania
    • $100 
    • 12 d

Fundraising team (2)

Cecelia Pascucci
Buffalo, NY
David Newman
Team member

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