The text to “Droga Chwały” is a quote from St. Maksymilian Maria Kolbe (1894–1941), a Polish Roman Catholic priest who was imprisoned in the Auschwitz concentration camp during World War II. When the Nazis sentenced ten men to be starved to death in an underground bunker, Kolbe volunteered to take the place of one of them. On August 14, 1941, after two weeks of starvation, he was executed by lethal injection. He was canonized in 1982 by Pope John Paul II. The English translation of the text is:
So everything is finished and suffering is at an end. The path of glory is the way of the Cross. Our Blessed Mother, She always helps us.
The harmony is rich and tonal, with all four parts divisi in two most of the time (the tenor momentarily divides into three). The piece begins in a restless minor tonality but modulates to a joyous and hopeful major key on the words “Matka Najświętsza z nami” (Our Blessed Mother).
A supplementary PDF pronunciation guide for the Polish is available separately — see below.
This piece has never been performed, so the only available audio sample is a MIDI recording in a string patch.