Pearl dress for the Icon of Our Lady of Jasna Góra

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This is translated from Polish that appeared on under Press Office of Jasna Góra and titled ‘Sukienka perłowa na Obraz Matki Bożej Jasnogórskiej and published 08-12-2018.

Jasna Góra. Work on preparing a new pearl dress for the Miraculous Picture of Our Lady of Jasna Gora, October 2018. Andrzej Majewski, a painter and embroiderer, has made another dress for the Miraculous Image of Our Lady of Czestochowa. The pearl dress, modelled on the one stolen in 1909 from the Miraculous Image, will be consecrated at Jasna Góra on 8 December, the feast of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

Pearl dress of Our Lady of Jasna Góra
Pearl dress of Our Lady of Jasna Góra

It was the idea of Andrzej Majewski, a painter and embroiderer from Gorzów Wielkopolski and currently living in Sweden, to make and donate a new dress adorning the Miraculous Image of Our Lady at Jasna Góra. He is the author of more than 700 paintings of Our Lady, most of which are in Sweden. The Pauline Fathers have already awarded the artist the medal of the Confederation of Friends of Jasna Gora for his contribution to the development of the Marian sanctuary. He has also been awarded, among others, the Knight’s Cross of the Order of the Rebirth of Poland in 2015.

Andrzej Majewski, the creator and donor of the replica pearl dress for the Miraculous Picture of Our Lady, points out that the images of Mary that he paints and embroiders are an expression of his prayer. And the dress for the Jasna Gora Picture is a votive offering of his life.

“I found out about 15 years ago from Fr Jan Golonka, the long-time custodian of the Votive Art Collection at Jasna Gora, that there was a fact in the history of Jasna Gora a dress that was stolen, a pearl dress. So I learnt a bit about the history and suggested to Father Jan, asking if it would be possible to make a replica of this dress. Fr Jan was pleased. He was even delighted that there was someone who wanted to make it”. – talks about the idea of making the dress Andrew Majewski.

“Experts say it is similar,” says the author proudly, “Some say it is the same, that I succeeded. I am quietly pleased that it has worked out. There has already been a fitting, and it has also been successful; everything fits. On 8 December, the feast of Our Lady Immaculate will be placed on the image.”

‘When I received the pattern from Fr Stanislaw Rudzinski last year in July, actually three patterns to follow, when I came back home to Stockholm, I found myself a specialist shop where they embroider. I told them what I needed the material for, so they gave me the best material, special thread for embroidery, the best,” says Andrzej Majewski. Of course, nobody dives into the oceans now, so these are cultured pearls of the best quality. I strung the pearls on wire because the holes in the pearls are small, and the needle does not go through with the thread. I threaded on a silver wire and sewed each pearl on myself with the strongest, best threads. When I had sewn them out, I brought them back in May to establish if everything fitted. When Father Stanisław Rudziński saw it, he liked it and said: ‘You’ve hit the jackpot. It’s very similar’.

When the artist arrived at Jasna Góra in September this year with the dress already prepared, the decoration of the work with jewellery from the Jasna Góra collection began. This went on for several weeks. “Every ring people brought to Jasna Góra out of love, no one ordered them, no one called them, no one collected them. It would be such a dress of love. So much of it went in, it’s hard to tell, but the dress is pleasing. It came out as it should. There was already a fitting of the Miraculous Picture. The Pauline Fathers watched it, said that everything fits, and I think they like it,” says the artist.

Andrzej Majewski was born in 1953 in Gorzów Wielkopolski in 1983. He was forced to leave the country for his opposition activity in the NSZZ “Solidarność” trade union. Educated as a polygraphist, he worked in the Gorzów Commercial Printing House. He left with his family for Sweden. There he began his artistic activity. He does not sell his works but gives them away, claiming that this would be a more acceptable offering to God than selling them. He has made more than 700 images of the Virgin Mary. Majewski paints on boards, but due to asthma, he had to limit his use of paints and then started embroidering. After some time, the illness subsided. He claims to have suffered from many illnesses but was miraculously cured. Most of his paintings are in Sweden, including Stockholm. In addition to sacred works, the artist also paints flowers and landscapes. In 2008, his paintings were printed on the cover of the ‘Knights of the Immaculate’.

Fr. Stanislaw Tomon
2018-12-08, Saturday, 3.00 pm
/information used: wm / Gorzów Wlkp.; Radio Jasna Góra/.