St. Florian’s Basilica, Krakow
Pope John Paul II raised the most significant church of Kleparz (once a separate town, today a district of Krakow) to the rank of Lesser Basilica.
The first church was erected in the 12th century, but the current Baroque building dates back to the years 1657–84. The later beatified pope served here as a curate in the years 1949–51 and resided in the parish building behind the church. He soon became famous in Krakow as a priest administering to the needs of academic community, excellent preacher, and confessor. He organized services for the sick, Passion plays, Christmas carol meetings, and finally, numerous hiking trips during which he said the mass in the open air. He visited his former parish as Pope only once, during his last pilgrimage to his fatherland in 2002. The Pope is commemorated by plaques – one inside the church, the second one in the curate residence, underneath the window of his former room.