Founding and Early History

Located in the agricultural lands of east San Antonio is a beautiful church modeled in gothic traditional architecture. The Annunciation BVM church at St. Hedwig, Texas has a rich and vibrant past. Lineage can be traced as far back in time as 1795 in Poland during the tragic time when country after its glorious past lost independence. The political environment of that era gave rise to a number of Polish emigrants looking for something new and challenging.

Father Leopold Moczygemba, a missionary of the Franciscan Order, had written a letter inviting people from Poland to pack up their families and move 8,000 miles to a new, and very different land. He created community of Panna Maria, Texas in 1854 and was instrumental in founding other Polish communities in USA.

The community, which the first thirteen families from Poland built in 1855 with their hard work, they called St. Hedwig, after their beloved Patroness and placed their parish under the protection of the Blessed Virgin Mary. The two priests most frequent mentioned in the church building were Fr. Vincent Barzynski and Fr. Felix Zwiardowski of the Resurrection Society. From the year 1855 until the present, the original families and descendants, 40 Pastors, and a rich blend of other nationalities, have all contributed to maintaining the religious faith and customs of the Roman Catholic Church.



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