TORUN, POLAND -- This medieval city in central Poland is a split-screen picture of the wider country. On one side of the city is Radio Maryja with its daily rants about the threat that Jews, gays and the liberals in the European Union pose for Poland. Across the Vistula River, less than 2 miles away from Radio Maryja, is the Higher School of Hebrew Philology founded by a Franciscan monk. Here Catholic students learn Hebrew and study about the Jewish origins of Christianity in the hope that this will bring both faiths closer.
The sharp contrasts between the nation’s progressive youth and the far-right Catholic radio station with millions of loyal listeners is evident in this city of 200,000, known as the birthplace of the astronomer Nicolaus Copernicus.