RIP: 18/03/2021 - Bielsko-Biała
Fr. Józef (Izydor) Zmełty was born on 1 August 1936 at Bronów near Bielsko-Biała. Due to the turbulence caused by the Second World War, his family was displaced, and he had to his elementary school in different places. After completing primary school, he enrolled in the State Technical School of Horticulture in Bielsko-Biała. He did his novitiate in Bagno, where he also professed his first vows on 8 September 1959. Due to the fact he had to finish still his secondary education, after his profession, he was sent to Krakow. From 1961 until 1968 he studied Philosophy and Theology at the Salvatorian Major Seminary of Bagno. He was ordained a priest in the cathedral of Wrocław on 22 June 1968. Fr. Józef was pastorally very active in the parish, in different places of his home country, Poland. He served as a catechist, a vicar, a parish priest. But for a certain time, he was asked to take over the task of a chaplain of the Tuberculosis Hospital in Kraków. An interesting detail to be mentioned is for sure that Fr. Józef at a certain stage served as an informal guardian and confessors of seminarians who had to accomplish their military service while Poland was under the Communist regime. The last years of his life were characterized by health difficulties and increasingly he suffered under the limitations that became bigger and bigger. At a certain point, his condition deteriorated so much that it became necessary to transfer Fr. Józef to a hospice in Bielsko, run by the Salvatorians, to provide him with comfortable conditions and professional medical care. Fr. Józef died on 18 March 2021 in Bielsko-Biała at the age of 85. He had been for 62 years Salvatorian.