The Justice Fund is a multimillion government aid program overseen by the Minister of Justice. Its declared goal is to provide crime victims and their relatives and partners with the necessary post-release financial assistance. It’s partially funded from surplus resources seized from offenders in the course of criminal investigations. The Fund already has a record of supporting the business empire of the Redemptorist Tadeusz Rydzyk (often referred to as “Father Director”), subsidizing such initiatives as a campaign against legal highs with over PLN 1,5 mln. (some $400.000).
Although the entire Ministry of Justice already spent almost PLN 4 mln on Rydzyk’s projects, it’s still been one of the least generous government institutions in that regard.
A government-sponsored Nationalist-Catholic business empire
But the Justice Fund is only one among many governmental institutions providing the priest-turned-businessman with millions in grants and tax breaks. The long list of donors includes the Agricultural Property Agency, the Chancellery of the Sejm, regional Water Management Authorities, the Office of the Multiannual „Independent” Program, the Polish Financial Supervision Authority, the National Bank for Agriculture, several Special Economic Zones, the Material Reserves Agency, the Polish Waters National State Holding, the Polish Agency for Enterprise Development, the Communications Office, and many others.
So far, it’s been estimated that Rydzyk received nearly PLN 250 mln (some $66 mln) in direct and indirect public funds. In the fiscal year 2018/2019, the Lux Veritatis Foundation alone registered an income of PLN 48 mln. Another foundation run by the Reverend – “Our Future” – receives between 5 and PLN 10 mln in annual donations.
The biggest beneficiaries by far- the Memory and Identity Museum and the Remembrance Park (sometimes called the Polish Yad Vashem) located in the city of Toruń – received PLN 117 mln from the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage. Other noteworthy donations include:
* Over PLN 50 mln in government funds to build a geothermal plant (the main donor- National Environmental Protection Fund);
* Some PLN 4 mln from the National Research and Development Center to subsidize projects like the Father Director’s media school
* A series of donations ranging between 70.000 and PLN 500.000 (amounting to a total of PLN 1 mln) from the Ministry of Health to finance health-related TV programs aired on Rydzyk’s TV station;
* Over PLN 600.000 in donations from the Ministry of Education to support Rydzyk’s Higher School of Social and Media Culture
* Some PLN 400.000 in grants from the National Fund for Environmental Protection to a post-graduate study program concerned with thermal modernization research offered at Rydzyk’s school;
* PLN 250.000 from the Polish National Bank to launch a new (paid!) post-graduate study program at the Higher School of Social and Media Culture;
* Over PLN 1 mln donated by the Agency for Restructuring and Modernization of Agriculture to subsidize the production of a TV series about the life on the Polish countryside;
* PLN 1.7 mln from the Ministry of Education to sponsor trainee and apprenticeship programs in the city of Toruń;
* PLN 630.000 from the Ministry of Investment and Economic Development to promote the local Rural Housewives Associations on Rydzyk’s TV station;
* PLN 1.2 mln in donations from the National Fund for Environmental Protection to launch a post-graduate study program concerned with environmental politics and wildlife support.
Subsidizing faith and morality
As its mission statement, the Center for the Protection of Christian Rights declares “the protection of rights of Christians and combating the root causes of religious persecution”.
Its main goals:
* educating, informing and promoting knowledge with the help TV programs, social-awareness campaigns, publications, lectures, and workshops
* providing cost-free legal support and citizen advice
* researching the topic of the persecution of Christians in Poland and abroad
The Center’s website is dominated by articles discussing the threat represented by “LGBT ideology” and the alleged attacks on the catholic church and priests around the world. As an example, the Center mentions a recent campaign by Polish LGBT activists who hanged a rainbow flag on the Christ monument in Warsaw.
According to the Lux Veritas Foundation, the total cost of operating the Center over a three years period (2020-2023) is estimated at PLN 7 mln.
The Center for the Protection of Christian Rights will receive the funds under a Justice Fund grant-project concerned with the “prevention of crime” through “defending faith and morality”.
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