Since its very beginning, the life of the Mariavite community focused around parishes and churches. It was the parishes that satisfied the religious needs of their membersbut also performed social functions related to education, culture, and welfare issues. Before, as well as during. World War I, the Mariavite Church was one of the largestreligious communities in Łódź. Mariavite parishes in Łódź were established several years before World War I, in the period when Mariavite parishes, independent from theRoman Catholic Church, were organised. The first Mariavite church was built in December 1906, the next in September 1907, and the third and the last after a year, inSeptember 1908. Apart from churches and chapels erected with exceptional speed, institutions for adult parish members and their children were also established, such as libraries, readingrooms, classrooms for girls and boys, schools, shelters, and flats for poor families. They were supposed to serve Mariavite Church members. Directly after the outbreak of the World War I, Łódź Mariavite clergy joined aid campaigns organized in parishes. Food was provided for adults and children on a larger scale; meals were prepared and served in Mariavite parochial kitchens. In that period, care and education institutions for children continued to perform their tasks; however, they intensified their activities aimed at providing meals, clothes, and shoes. The overridingtask of Mariavite shelters included care, religious and moral education, and helping children of pre-school age (3–7). Aid was provided to children from poor families of factory workers and craftsmen.
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