Henryk Hoser, archbishop of Warsaw-Praga, faulted Lemanski for "a lack of respect and disobedience" and said his outburst "caused great damage to and confusion in the heart of the Church community".An influential figure in the Polish church, Hoser is a physician and president of the episcopate's committee on bioethics, which looks at controversial advances in medicine and biology."This is a new stage in the confrontation between an open church and a closed one," said Stanislaw Obirek, a Warsaw-based Catholic theologian and former Jesuit.‘Language of hate’After his dismissal, Lemanski initially stood his ground before deciding on Monday to leave the parish.
He said Lemanski was symbolic of the Church under the new pope: one more attentive to the everyday concerns of its flock and less of a hierarchical, authoritarian institution with little or no tolerance for dissent."Father Lemanski spoke out against language used by the Polish Church that is hurtful to people who think differently, notably on the subject of in-vitro fertilisation, abortion, or homosexuality - a language of hate," he said.
Adam Szostkiewicz, a commentator on Church affairs at the leftwing Polityka weekly, stressed that "Father Lemanski is not calling into question Church doctrine itself". He just spoke according to his conscience, against statements that stigmatise people and whose dignity has been violated." Exceptional achievements Lemanski recently defended 26-year-old Agnieszka Ziolkowska, Poland's first test-tube baby, who decided to leave the Catholic Church.
He apologised to parishioners - who had thrown their full support behind him - and asked them to obey the church hierarchy.
But rather than capitulate, Lemanski went higher and asked the Vatican to rule on his dismissal in the hope that Pope Francis himself would review his case."There's hope in the Vatican and the possible reaction of Pope Francis," Obirek told AFP.
A collection of images of church books containing baptisms, births, marriages, burials, and deaths for Evangelical congregations around Poland can be found on For these later records, see Poland Civil Registration- Vital Records In general, church records in Poland have been kept since the mid-1600s, although a few parishes have records dating from about 1548.
The efficient recording of baptisms, marriages, and deaths developed slowly.
Warsaw - A high-profile row between a charismatic rebel priest and the bishop who fired him has sparked controversy in heavily Catholic Poland, a sign of the tension within its changing church.
Father Wojciech Lemanski, aged 53, was sacked as parish priest in the eastern village of Jasienica after speaking out on his blog against the Polish episcopate's censure of test-tube babies, abortion, euthanasia and contraception.
Church records (Księgi metrykalne) are excellent sources for accurate information on names; dates; and places of births, marriages, and deaths.