Krakow, Poland: Basilica of Saint Florian (patron saint of firefighters)
About Saint Florian:
He was Third century officer in Roman army stationed in what is today Austria. Tradition says that he stopped a town from burning by praying and throwing a single bucket of water on the blaze.
He was secretly a Christian but when he was ordered to execute a group of Christians during the persecutions of Diocletian he professed his faith and was himself put to death. After being tortured, he was thrown in a river with a stone around his neck.
Later other Christians retrieved his body and he was buried in an Augustinian monastery near Storch. In 1138 his relics were transfered to Rome, but part of them were given to King Casimir of Poland by Pope Lucius III.
About the Basilica of Saint Florian in Krakow:
Over the centuries this Church has been built, destroyed by fire, re-built, again destroyed by fire, so it is fitting that it houses the remains of the Patron Saint of Firefighters: Saint Florian.
An interesting note: Karol Wojtyła, who of course later became Pope John Paul II, was associate pastor of this parish from 1949-1951.
The church is open daily and several Masses are held each weekday with 8 Masses on Sundays. The full schedule is on their website.
Address: Warszawska 1b, 31-155 Kraków, Poland
GPS coordinates: 50° 4′ 26.6376” N, 19° 56′ 24.4212” E
Tel: +48 (12) 422-48-42
e-mail: [email protected]
Click here for the official website of the Basilica of Saint Florian in Krakow (in Polish).
And check out the life-size statue of Saint Florian in the Catholic Memorial at Ground Zero in New York City.