A monumental basilica and a monastery of the Franciscan order located near Warsaw are a fruit of great faith and a visionary idea of St. Maksymilian Kolbe. The seminary, the Niepokalanów Radio, the Niepokalanów TV, the publishing house, numerous pilgrimages – all these elements make this place teem with life. The first prior initiated construction works in the twenties of the 20th century, but did not accomplish them; he died a martyr in the Auschwitz concentration camp in 1941 sacrificing his life for another prisoner. He was canonised in 1987 by the Pope John Paul II who paid tribute to his life and death. Niepokalanów is entrusted under the protection of the Immaculate Holy Mother. Her figure, standing above a massive doorway, welcomes the believers with her wide open arms. The door is decorated with 24 copper low relieves depicting various images of the Holy Mother from the most renown sanctuaries in the world. It leads to a three-aisle shrine seating 5 000 believers. At the central altar there is another sculpture of the Immaculate Mother. The temple is adorned by the extraordinary pulpit made from Carrarian marble as well as by stained-glass windows presenting scenes from the Immaculate Mary’s life. A chapel of St. Maximilian Kolbe is located in one of the aisles. A group of wooden statues which illustrate the history of the Church and the mystery of Christ’s Passion can be found in the vaults of the basilica. An old chapel has been preserved on the premises of the sanctuary where brother Maximilian held services and Mementos to his memory can be seen in a reconstruction of a prison cell in which he died in Oświęcim.