Sunday morning starts early for the Father Dawid Kwiatkowski.
By 5 a.m., Kwiatkowski is into the thick of his responsibilities as parochial vicar at St. Joseph Catholic Church in Macon.
For the 29-year-old Kwiatkowski, one of the most important parts of his Sunday routine, apart from leading worship, is checking in on the children of the parish as they learn the ways of the faith.
“I, like a little elf, go from one classroom to another, one church to another in the building and just try to see and oversee what’s going on in all those classes,” Kwiatkowski said.
When he drops in, he quizzes children on a bit of church knowledge or tradition.
“What do we call the people who leave the Mass early? Who was the one who left the Last Supper early?” Kwiatkowski joked with one class.
“Judas!” the children responded.
“Right! Because they leave the Mass early. Plus, they miss most of the announcements, right?” he said.
For Kwiatkowski, simply being there is an important part of educating young Catholics.
“I just want to make sure that they see the priest, that he actually cares,” he said.
Originally from Poland, Kwiatkowski is still finding how his calling fits in with the people he serves.
“I am still trying to observe. Sometimes I know its weird, ‘cause I will just stand there and stare.”
The staring serves a higher purpose, he said.
“I’m observing people, trying to see how they think about meaning of life, about God, in the South, in Georgia.”
His day ends at 9 p.m. after finishing duties that include Sunday School, celebrating five Masses, saying his silent prayers and overseeing an evening youth group.
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