Miracle on the Vistula

The Assumption of the Virgin Mary is commonly celebrated on August 15. In Poland, the same day also marks the Day of the Polish Armed Forces, which commemorates the anniversary of Poland's victory in the Battle of Warsaw, a decisive victory during the Polish-Soviet War of 1920.

4405449527_6745912fd7_o.jpg The Assumption of the Virgin Mary, also known in Poland as the Feast of Our Lady of Herbs, is celebrated on August 15 by Catholics all over the world. In Poland, it is usually connected with the custom of offering and blessing herbs, grain, vegetables and flowers as blessed harvest is believed to secure peace and harmony to those who offer it. It is a public holiday and churches hold solemn masses. On this day, pilgrimages from all corners of Poland reach the sanctuary at Jasna Góra in Częstochowa. 

August 15 also marks the Day of the Polish Armed Forces commemorating the Battle of Warsaw, Poland's decisive victory during the Polish-Soviet War of 1920, often referred to as the "miracle on the Vistula". The battle, fought between August 12 and 25 between the Polish Army under the command of Marshal Józef Piłsudski and the Red Army, is considered a major milestone in Polish history as it saved Poland's newly regained independence, but also one of the most important battles in history since the Polish victory over the Soviets stopped the spread of communism to Europe.

The Day of the Polish Armed Forces is marked by military parades, equipment reviews and rememberances across Poland. In Warsaw, state authorities attend an Honorary Change of the Guard held in front of the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at the Piłsudski Square.