INTRODUCTION: Poland was in official mourning on Friday (29 May) for Cardinal Stefan Wyscynski, the towering symbol of Roman Catholicism in communist Poland.
GV PAN Streets and Cardinal's palace
SV Flag and people outside gates (2 shots)
GV INT Flowers piled around coffin PAN mourners
SV Mourners carrying Solidarity banners
SV Nuns carrying wreaths and churchmen in procession
GV Processions with bishops
GV Coffin carried aloft by priests
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Background: INTRODUCTION: Poland was in official mourning on Friday (29 May) for Cardinal Stefan Wyscynski, the towering symbol of Roman Catholicism in communist Poland. The cardinal, who was primate and spiritual leader of the nation for 33 years, died the previous day.
SYNOPSIS: The sound of bells tolling for the death of Poland's spiritual leader dominated the life of Warsaw on Thursday (28 May). The nation, which had heard of the death of Cardinal Wyscynski earlier in the day, was in official mourning...and thousands of people stood in silent tribute outside the cardinal's palace in the city in silent tribute to the man who had consistently defied all attempts to undermine the authority of the church in Poland.
Inside the palace, mourners file past the flower-decked coffin containing the body of the cardinal.
In a unique gesture of solidarity between church and state, Poland's red and white flag was flown at half mast throughout the day, theatres and cinemas were closed and state radio and television programmes curtailed until the Cardinal's funeral, due to be held on Sunday. And leaders of Poland solidarity trade union, carrying Solidarity banners, paid their tribute to the churchman whose encouragement for union leaders had given such impetus to the union reform programme.
AND Cardinal Wyscynski, who was once imprisoned by the Communist regime in Poland, was officially described as "a great patriot" -- perhaps his ultimate accolade.