Pope Francis greeted Polish pilgrims during his November 7, 2018, General Audience, remarking particularly on the 100th anniversary of Polish Independence, which will be celebrated Sunday, November 11, 2018. The Pope said:
“I cordially greet Polish pilgrims. Dear brothers and sisters, next Sunday will be the 100th anniversary of the independence of Poland. On this occasion I join you and all your countrymen in the prayer of thanksgiving. I hope the Polish people may live the gift of freedom in peace and prosperity, building a happy future for their country, in the union based on the spiritual heritage of their ancestors and fraternal love. May you always be accompanied by the protection of Mary Queen of Poland and by God’s blessing! “
November 11 is a national holiday in Poland to commemorate the anniversary of the restoration of Poland’s sovereignty as the Second Polish Republic in 1918 from the German, Austrian and Russian Empires. Following the partitions in the late 18th century, Poland ceased to exist for 123 years until the end of World War I, when the defeat of the neighboring powers allowed the country to reemerge.