38 mln people, 95% roman catholic, birthplace of solidarity (the beginning of the end for communist rule in eastern Europe), and after a little research via Google I just found out Poland is in the top five countries in the world for growth in alcohol sales! With staunch Catholicism together with post-communist, post-world war 2, attitudes you can start to understand and appreciate the vast work layed out in a country with one oppression after another. Its no wonder walking down the streets in Warsaw I noticed a certain look of almost hopelessness in the eyes of the people. A people used to fighting and standing there ground, a people used to working for what’s theirs. And a people I found, to my pleasant surprise, the most hospitable I have ever met.
So this is where the Lord has sent brother Bogdan and myself(Louis Formaz). As Caleb said “Let us go up and occupy it, for we are able to overcome it.” The Goliaths in a darkened Europe make us feel like grasshoppers and I have heard of the growing wickedness in Europe, but I come with a different report. “Lift up your eyes and see the field is white for the harvest.” So here is a quick layout of our trip and some of the highlights.
Bogdan and I spend five weeks mostly in Poland however we spend some time in Holland which we flew in and out of as well as through Germany on our drive to Poland from Holland.
So we flew into Amsterdam and I have to say it is the wickedest place I have ever been in my life. So Bogdan and myself got to preaching right away, it was amazing how fast you can draw a crowd just talking about Jesus outside of a sex museum, or on a street where women are selling themselves from every store. Praise God what a place to share the gospel, we spent the afternoon witnessing to people from all over, Germany, America France, it was a great time and both Bogdan and myself felt a powerful move in our Spirit as the Lord shared with us His desire to reach the people and how ready they were for someone to simply point them the way to the savior. Halleluiah I hope to go back again soon.
While still in Holland we bought a Volks wagon van which became our main source of traveling and we did well putting in about 5000 klm. Then we were off to Poland via Germany. After a stop in Berlin to see the sights and do some more witnessing on a street where Hitler had given speeches and Nazis marched it was off to Poland! First was a visit to Bogdans family who were some of the most wonderful people I have met we were to meet our contact in Poland, Henric Dedo, president of “Gospel for Poland”, an organization broadcasting evangelical programs through the radio all over Poland. We met Henric at a Christian camp being hosted for about 120 young people from all over Poland, some who were orphans and from difficult situations at home, and some were Christian youth who look forward to a time being around other Christians. Bogdan and I spoke regularly at the nightly and morning meetings held in the main hall along with a wide variety of interesting Polish preachers…and I mean interesting, rappers, bikers, and gangsters who now love Jesus. Many young poele accepted the Lord. Also Bogdan and I together with an ex-gangster who has a very powerful testimony did a trip to a nearby “Teen Challenge”. Where “the gangster” gave his testimony and Bogdan preached, four people at least coming foreward to receive Jesus.
After nine days at the camp it was back to Warsaw. So with the youth group in the church here in Poland we organized an outreach involving a very powerful drama and allot of tracks. so what happened was that they did the drama then i spoke and henric interpreted. There were some great conversations and one of the people who heard the gospel came to church the next day and ended up going for a couple days with some people from the church so he now has Christian friends…which is not easy to come by in Poland. Other than that many tracks, but I believe the most important thing that happened was that some of these people from the youth group caught a glimse of what it means to stand for Jesus in your own city where your friends may see you making a fool of yourself for Jesus. So they ot a chance to see what it means to reach out to a dying world…and how simple it really is.
Following Warsaw was a road trip that would take us through some beautiful sights and also some of the worst. Four prisons in three days with both Bogdan and I speaking at each one. Now this was amazing and was quite an experience I am sure I will never forget. Watching the faces of these men as the Holy Spirit began to touch and soften them was to me worth living for. A highlight for me an Bogdan both was the last prison where we were surrounded by murderers and some of the hardest people your likely to find(I really felt like a grasshopper here). Some of these men who were saved from unspeakable crimes now have a choir that travels to other prisons! These men began to praise God and sing songs about Jerusalem and when they did I’m telling you the presence of the Lord showed up, Halleluiah, Praise God, shout a Amen!!! So we preached Jesus, glory to God!
After the last prison we drove to Auschwitz where we stayed with a family that we had met at the Christian camp who happened to live in the town attached to Auschwitz. Just another example of Polish hospitality. The way we traveled in Poland was house to house even as Christ and gave me a feel and a sense of Polish life and attitudes.
Ok so let me give you the straight goods. Poland is a land waiting and crying out for the simple gospel, for the touch of the Holy Spirit, for something to hold onto that is not a shame and wont fall apart. Bogdan and myself planted many seeds and saw some fruit but the greatest harvest is waiting there. Many in the small population of Christians there feel discouraged. There is a real need for grass roots Christianity, crying out in prayer and going out sharing the word. The story of Caleb and Joshua just rings in my Spirit. I heard of how hard it is to reach people in Poland and how dark Europe is right now. But I’m telling you our report is that we can overcome the obstacles.
A personal thanks you from Bogdan and I for everyone who supported us financially and in prayer your sacrifice will soon be rewarded by the Lord Himself. On a personal level I can say I was deeply impacted and changed on this trip.
Thank you and God Bless each of you who have read this.
Lets dream with God for Poland.