Archive Links

Consumer Archive
CU System Archive
Market Archive
Products Archive
Washington Archive

News Now

CU System
Polands CU pioneer nominated for sainthood
SOPOT, Poland (1/18/12)--Franciszek Stefczyk, a former country school teacher and political organizer, soon may make Poland the first country to have a credit union saint, according to the World Council of Credit Unions (WOCCU). Stefczyk is credited with starting Poland's first credit unions in the early 20th century.

"Dr. Stefczyk, who has been referred to as the 'Polish Raiffeisen,' was an ardent Christian, a great Polish patriot and a pioneer of rural cooperative credit unions," said Janusz Ossowski, president of Poland's Cooperative Research Institute. "He was a person of wonderful qualities of spirit and mind whose entire life bears testimony to the belief that the rules of business can be reconciled by the Gospel if those rules are based on true values and the idea of helping one's neighbor."

Beatification, often years in the making, is based on specific criteria established by the Roman Catholic Church. In December, World Council First Vice Chair Grzegorz Bierecki, president/ CEO of the National Association of Cooperative Savings & Credit Unions (NACSCU) and a senator in Poland's parliament, nominated Stefczyk for beatification to the Most Rev. Mieczysław Mokrzycki, archbishop of Lvov. Mokrzycki accepted the request, expressed his support and pledged to take further action based on the church's canonization laws.

"Franciszek Stefczyk was an eminent personality, setting the example for Poles," Bierecki said. "He was a man who, through his personal example, showed how the Gospel can be put into practice, and he deserves canonization."

The credit unions Stefczyk created flourished until 1939, when Nazi forces shuttered them during the invasion and occupation of Poland. The credit union movement was further suppressed under the communist rule that followed World War II. Credit unions remained virtually dormant until the Solidarity movement helped the country earn its freedom in 1989.

With some early assistance from WOCCU, Poland's credit unions have blossomed since that time, and the country has become home to one of the world's fastest growing and most progressive credit union systems, said WOCCU.

In 2012, SKOK will celebrate its 20th anniversary, which will include hosting WOCCU's World Credit Union Conference. The event will be held July 15–18 in Gdańsk, birthplace of Solidarity and adjacent to Sopot, where Poland's credit union trade group and World Council member NACSCU is headquartered.

For more information on the conference, use the link.
Other Resources

RSS print
News Now LiveWire
.@BelvoirFederal revamped the checking acct. it offers to active duty military members and achieved 23% growth on the product in 1 mo.
8 hours ago
.@FinancialCmte markup of Reg D Study Act set for Tuesday. CUNA will submit support letter. http://t.co/cDWkZ0Q0x1
12 hours ago
The 54th Western CUNA Management School graduated 89 students on July 25.
12 hours ago
.@CUNA Bank Secrecy Act training to reach 38 Mich. state examiners #NewsNow http://t.co/7HDPgwih8G
14 hours ago
St. Louis treasurer taps #creditunion to serve unbanked #NewsNow http://t.co/lWtcezJOej
7 25 ago