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The Papal Chapel in the Rusnakowa Clearing

Approximately 25 minutes from the hostel on Turbacz, on the yellow trail in the Rusnakowa clearing, there is the Chapel of Our Lady Queen of Gorce, generally known as the Papal Chapel or the Pastoral Chapel. It was built in 1979 on the site of the previous chapel (now moved to the northern edge of the clearing). Its construction had been hurried, so that it could be finished before the first pilgrimage of John Paul II to Poland. It was hoped that he could dedicate the chapel personally, unfortunately, there was not enough time to do it.

The second time the Holy Father was expected to be there was in 1983, however, the papal helicopter landed in the Chochołowska Valley. When in 1998 photos of the chapel were shown to him, he said, "Yes, it's there that they were waiting for me then...". As is well known, Polish mountains were close to the heart of the Pope, and before he was elected to take the Santa Sede, he frequently walked in Gorce, e.g. on Turbacz.

Every weekend from the end of April until the end of September, Father Kazimierz Krakowczyk, who takes care of the Chapel, celebrates mass there. The masses are frequented by members of GOPR (Mountain Volunteer Rescue Service), hunters, scouts and safe heaven groups. Crowds of tourists and local residents, who appreciate their special atmosphere, also come to the field masses.
The mass celebrated on the second Sunday of August is of most solemn character. Originally, it was associated with the anniversary of the Warsaw Uprising. However, since 1982, the Feast of the Mountain People has  been celebrated on this day - under the auspices of the Association of the Podhalans.
It is worth noting that for many years Father Józef Tischner participated in and preached during the ceremonies.