On April 22, we returned to Prague from Luton, UK. The flight went without incident and we soon settled in at our third-floor nest for a couple of quiet days of rest and preparation for the next leg of our trip.
On Thursday, April 25, we left Prague in the company of Roman and Martina and their youngest son, Christian, being driven in their car for the 3 ½ hour drive east to Sumperk in the Moravia district of Czech. It was a beautiful day, dry and without rain as it has been for some time now in this country. We arrived in the late afternoon and were registered into the Pension G, the same as last year, while the Oulickys went on the stay with Libor and Lenka. Our evening meeting was a few hours later, only a block away at the Grand Hotel. I spoke to a very good crowd, of about 20 adults, on the subject of the Fullness of Maturity as Sons of God. After the meeting, much finger food was laid out on a table that made for an excellent evening meal.
The next day, we were taken to the house where Lenka made us an excellent traditional Czech meal. The afternoon gave us a little time to walk about for awhile and then to pray for the deliverance and healing of a certain sister of the fellowship. The evening meeting was again held at the same hotel where I spoke on Our Calling to be a Peculiar People. There was good liberty in the word and the people expressed a genuine appreciation for our coming, asking us to plan to come again next year.
On Saturday morning, the Oulickys then drove us further east and north to Cesky Tesin, right on the Polish border. Our first stop was at Bro. Kamil and Sis. Teresa’s house for another excellent traditional Czech meal and good fellowship. Bro. Kamil is a young energetic farmer who has also been praying for rain for the spring planting. It has been quite dry. When we left home in upstate NY, there was no grass (the ground has just thawed from the winter frost) and there were no leaves on the trees; here in Czech, everything is very green and the trees are shooting forth their leaves and blossoms. After this, we were taken to our “new” pension, in the beautiful forested mountain foothills near Reka, where we will spend the next three nights.
By late afternoon, we were taken the short distance (about 10 minutes) to the home of Tomas and Magda Brchan for the meeting and for a later evening meal. There was a goodly crowd with many new faces present, packed into their large living room. One of the attendees was a young man from a neighboring home fellowship. I spoke on the Manifestation of the Sons of God.
On Sunday morning, we were taken again to the Brchan home for the regular meeting. It was a smaller crowd and I spoke on Being Baptized into Christ. We were informed that we also had an invitation to speak at the home fellowship in the nearby village of Nydek, where the yesterday visitor’s father-in-law was the senior elder (perhaps pastor). After a time of praise, I was given liberty to share. I spoke on, I Will Give Power…to His called and chosen ones and I also shared some of my own testimony. Rita also helped teach them the song, I Submit Myself to You Lord. It seemed to be a very anointed environment; some of the people were saying that they wanted to hear more again and also asking us to pray for them as a fellowship. Magda did a very good job of interpreting, as she has for all of these meetings.
Auschwitz – Birkenau
On Monday, April 29, Tomas and Magda took the day off to fellowship with us and drove us a little over an hour’s drive north into Poland to the village of the twin Nazi Concentration Camp Museums. When we arrived, we faced an unexpected crowd of tourists waiting to gain entrance into Auschwitz. There appeared to be hundreds of tour buses and thousands of people. After some inquiry we were able to obtain four free tickets, which would not permit entry until late afternoon. We ate a small lunch in the car and then began to inquire what we might do for several more hours. I might also mention that several days of steady light drizzle fell, soaking everything around us, in answer to the prayers of the many farmers. So, the region was also filled with hundreds and hundreds of umbrellas over the heads of tourists making it difficult to maneuver through the crowds of people.
Then we discovered that the Birkenau Camp was only a few minutes away by bus, and the ride was free. When we exited the bus, we found a large place of unorganized crowds and many buildings (we could walk wherever we wished); many were restored to look exactly like they would have appeared 75 years ago. I can only estimate that the expansive grounds must have taken up 300-500 acres. There must have been scores of buildings with only the original smokestacks remaining of many, all grounds surrounded by high voltage electric fences. I found Birkenau quite realistic and I was not shocked; it was much as I had expected.
Then we caught the bus and returned back to Auschwitz, where after a little more waiting we were able to gain access to the actual camp/museum. We had to show our ID and pass through security as stringent as any of the best airports. This camp definitely provided more documentation and display of articles and photographs than the other one; but I thought it was too sanitized to give the impact that I had expected; perhaps the thousands of milling tourists and special guided groups had something to do with it. Lastly, we visited the “death shower” room (gas chamber) and the burning ovens; it was quite small as only a small portion of the original death chambers had been preserved as a sample. I was able to take many photographs. When we left the actual “museum”, I asked how many visitors they had today; they said 9000.
I am no longer sure that it is really possible to comprehend the real horror of what went on in those terrible places. And then, I am continuing to enquire, “Lord, what is the thing that is worse than this that is coming on the whole world?” My mind still cannot fathom it, nor can I imagine how it will all play out. All I can say is that we need to be prepared for great tribulation; and coming into the fullness of Christ and under the shadow of the Almighty is our only hope.
On Tuesday morning, we began the 5-hour ride with Oulickys back to Prague. This brings us to a few days of fellowship with families, prayer meetings and counseling. We are still in our apartment and all of our meals are being prepared by brethren at their various homes. For the midweek fellowship meeting, we also met at the Klusons.
Saturday, May 4th is a much busier day. In the afternoon we held two teaching sessions at the “Patmos” fellowship room. We were organized like last year, most of us around several joined tables. My teaching was on the spiritual meanings of biblical words, such as: sun, moon, stars, trees, grass, sea, earth, etc. I found the discussion quite enjoyable. The ladies prepared a variety of delicious snacks to enjoy between the two meetings.
On Sunday, the fellowship met for the regular full group meeting. The praise, with the sound of the piano and the guitars, was beautiful, especially when blending and harmonizing with their heavenly voices, singing the song about the city of God and the Lamb being the light thereof. I found myself carried away to a beautiful spiritual place for a few minutes. Oh, they are so fortunate to have such a blessed fellowship! I then spoke on the Maturity of the Harvest, the Lord bringing in both the harvest of righteous sonship and also the harvest judgment on unrighteousness (the vine of the earth being cast into the great final winepress).
On Sunday afternoon, at the request of the older youth, Rita met with eight young sisters who are coming into the maturity of womanhood, for an open discussion about whatever was on their hearts. I heard that the sisters very much appreciated the time with Rita.
We have now come to the end of our three week visit in Europe. It has been very rewarding for us and the brethren tell me that they were likewise blessed. Our flight will be leaving Prague very early on Tuesday morning (May 7) and by early evening we should return to our home in New York. We have clearly seen the hand of the Lord on these travels and your prayers have been evident. Again, our thanks go to all who share spiritually with us.
Mark and Rita Jantzi