On July 1, 1871, Fr. Jerome Kajsiewicz, the Superior General of the Congregations of the Resurrection, a Polish religious order founded in France in the 1840s, entered a ninety-nine-year-long contract with Bishop Foley to staff St. Stanislaus Kostkawas and other Polish mission churches in Chicago. Between 1871 and 1900, Resurrectionist Fathers founded twenty parishes in Chicago. They also recruited secular (diocesan) priests in Europe to work as pastors and associate pastors in Chicago.
A second Superior General, Father Peter Semenenko, appointed Fr. Vincent Barzynski the Provincial Superior for the whole United States, with a headquarters in Chicago. He served as Provincial of the Resurrectionists and Pastor of St. Stanislaus Kostkawas until his death on May 2, 1899.
With the assistance of Ressurectionist Fathers and Brothers and secular priests who called themselves Tertiaries of the Resurrectionists, Fr. Barzynski directed the founding of Holy Trinity in 1872; St. Adalbert's in 1874; Immaculate Conception in 1882; Saints Cyril and Methodius in Lemont, Illinois in 1883; St. Josaphat's in 1886; St. Hedwig in 1888; St. John Cantius in 1893; St. Stanislaus Bishop and Martyr in 1893; St. Hyacinth in 1894; Sacred Heart in Melrose Park, Illinois in 1895; St. Michael's in South Chicago in 1897; St. Mary of Mount Carmel in 1897; St. Stanislaus Bishop and Martyr in Posen in 1898; Ascension in Harvey, Illinois in 1899; and St. Mary of the Angels in 1899. In 1887, Fr. Barzynski founded the Polish Publishing Company for the printing of Catholic books and periodicals. Three years later, he founded the Dziennilc Chicagoski (Polish Daily News), a Polish-language Catholic daily newspaper.
He founded Holy Family Orphanage and built the physical plant on Division Street and Holt Street and placed the orphans under the care of the School Sisters of Notre Dame in 1890. That same year, he founded St. Stanislaus Kostka College.
Further, he helped the Sisters of the Holy Family of Nazareth establish St. Mary of Nazareth Hospital in 1894. Polish Chicagoans raised money for a monument for him in St. Adalbert's Cemetery in northwest suburban Niles.
He tried to bring the Sisters of the Resurrection to Chicago in his final years. Polish women’s religions orders that have taught in Chicago included the Felician Sisters and the Sisters of the Holy Family of Nazareth. Fr. Barzynski invited the Sisters of the Holy Family of Nazareth to U.S. and brought them to their first American mission, St. Josaphat's School in 1885.
In 1894, Josephine Dudzik (Sister Theresa) founded a Polish-American order in Chicago, the Franciscan Sisters of Blessed Kunegunda, now known as the Franciscan Sisters of Chicago. Fr. Barzynski helped Mother M. Theresa Dudzik, O.S.F, and Anna Wisinska in the task of founding the Franciscan Sisters of Blessed Kunegunda to care for the aged and ill poor people.
With his support, they opened a home for the elderly in Avondale. In 1899, the Franciscan Sisters also assumed charge of the orphans from Holy Family Orphanage when St. Stanislaus Kostka could no longer support it.
These Polish parochial schools first taught classes exclusively in Polish, but the Archdiocese of Chicago forced them to teach in both Polish and English, Pacyga observed. On September 8, 1979, the formal process for the beatification of Mother M. Theresa Dudzik, O.S.F, founder of the Franciscan Sisters of Chicago, began.
In 1900, St. Stanislaus Kostka College moved to the former orphanage on Division Street. The school had classrooms, a library, music hall, gymnasium, and dormitory for out-of-town students.
While Fr. John Kosinski, CR, was rector from 1905 to 1908, St. Stanislaus Kostka College received accreditation from the State of Illinois. New York State and the Gregorian University of Rome granted charters to grant degrees after six years. The school gained physics and chemistry labs.
In 1911, a new rector, Fr. Ladislaus Zapala, CR, organized a two-year business college that had both day and evening classes. Students could study bookkeeping, stenography, typing, commercial geography, arithmetic, and English. The library had a collection of 5,000 volumes.
When World War I broke out, the Ressurectionists abandoned their dream of founding a Polish-American University in Chicago. They sold the property and offered the money to the Polish National Council to help re-establish an independent Poland.
In 1919, enrollment increased to over 300 students. On Saturdays, the school was used for the teacher training of over 150 sisters.
Named in honor of one of Fr. Barzynski’s successors as Provincial, Very Rev. Francis Gordon, C.R., Gordon Hall, located on Haddon Avenue, was acquired in 1928. It was remodeled to hold a large gymnasium, a science room, chemistry and physics laboratories, and a cafeteria. This technical branch would in 1952 become an important part of the newly established Gordon Technical High School.
On March 3, 1930, Father Thaddeus Ligman, C.R., the principal, announced the school was being re-named Archbishop Weber High School in honor of another Resurrectionist Provincial, Most Rev. Archbishop Joseph Weber (1846-1918), C.R., Auxiliary Bishop of Lviv, Ukraine. Seventy-eight students were in the first graduating class of Archbishop Weber High School.
During the Great Depression, the number of students decreased and correspondingly so did the faculty (from eight priests and ten lay teachers to nine priests and one layman). In the 1940s, the Archbishop Weber Red Horde athletic teams did well in the Chicago Catholic League. In September of 1950 the new school building and gymnasium opened on Palmer Avenue.
The same year Archbishop Weber High School celebrated its centennial, the U.S. Department of Education recognized it as an Exemplary School. The school incorporated.
Fr. Francis Rog, C.R., the principal, became the first president. Finally, in June of 1999, while Fr. Steven Bartczyszyn, C.R., was principal, Archbishop Weber High School closed due to low student enrollment. The Weber Alumni Association allows alumni to stay in contact, get together, and raise money for scholarships.
The Congregation of the Resurrection founded Gordon Technical High School as a separate high school in 1952. This school is now known as Gordon Tech College Prep (“In Academic Partnership With DePaul University”).
In 2013, Gordon Tech went from having 434 students to 540 students. “DePaul believes that strong Catholic education benefits an entire community,” said the Rev. Dennis H. Holtschneider, C.M., DePaul University President. “We welcome the opportunity to support a Catholic institution with a rising academic profile like Gordon Tech.”
Kelly Jones, President of Gordon Tech, said, “In recent years, the Gordon Tech community has worked hard to revitalize its programs to meet the needs of today’s college-bound students. A partnership with DePaul University will ensure access to educational opportunities for young men and women seeking a high-quality, faith-based, college preparatory experience. We are thrilled to be a part of such an exciting initiative that will allow us to better serve students and families on the North Side of Chicago.”
The Rev. Gene Szarek, C.R., Provincial Superior of the Congregation of the Resurrection, remarked, "The collaboration of the largest Catholic university in the country with Gordon Tech is an unprecedented blessing to our students and faculty and for the mission of Catholic education. This is great news for all involved."
The two schools stated, “DePaul is well-suited to play a role in assisting Gordon Tech with its revitalization. The university will provide its expertise in understanding market needs and building high-quality academic programs to help Gordon Tech realize its vision of becoming one of Chicago’s first choice college preparatory high schools and able to compete with the city’s selective enrollment and top-tier Catholic high schools.”
“This partnership will ensure the long-term viability of a high-quality Catholic institution on the North Side, giving parents a first-rate educational option for all students in the family,” said Dia S. Weil, Chair of the Gordon Tech Board. Weil, a retired business executive, is a trustee at DePaul. Mary Dempsey, a DePaul trustee and former Chair of the DePaul University Board, was added to the Gordon Tech Board in September of this year.
Robert Karpinski, DePaul’s Director of Catholic School Initiatives, stated, “Having the largest Catholic university as a partner allows Gordon Tech to build on their recent success in ways they could not have been able to do on their own. Partnering with a university provides opportunities to students and families that are simply not available at other area Catholic high schools.”