Saturday, November 1, 2008

All Saints Day

November 1st is All Saints Day around the world, and this is how it's celebrated in Bielsko Biala, Poland. For several weeks now, families locally have gone to the cemetery to clean up their loved ones' grave site. They've organized and planned with relatives who live in other cities as to how to spend the holiday - who's house, who will cook the main meal, who will bring what kind of cake. This week they've grocery shopped, purchased fresh flowers and candles, made their travel plans. And today, they visit the cemeteries of their loved ones, pay respects, and attend mass. Click here for more reading about this.

I've taken a few pictures from our neighborhood Catholic church and cemetery - they are quite beautiful during the day and into the evening.

We remembered Grandpa, Greg's dad, today. He died in February and Jillian has especially missed her "only" grandpa.

As I write this Greg finishes week 2 of his 4 weeks in the States. Josiah Venture is hosting an event in 11 cities, celebrating 15 ministry years in Central and Eastern Europe (see earlier post for details). Along with him are 80 of our team mates and many nationals we minister together with. I have heard the evenings have been just wonderful and inspiring as friends and family and supporters like you have listened to testimonies of God's work here in Eastern and Central Europe.

Poland's population is near 40 million, barely 40 thousand are evangelicals; there are over 6 million youth in Poland.
Recently I heard that there about 50 missionaries in Poland (9 serving with Josiah Venture), that's just under 2 million people per missionary. Now that's something to keep one busy with the Lord's work.

As the weekend closes, remembering those who have passed away, please pray with us for those 6 million youth who are still living.

Because Jesus is the resurrection and the life we have hope each day to offer to others.


Missy said...

This was really interesting and informative. We are feeling it too, with less than .01% evangelicals here in Quebec. SO glad to have you working for Him!

Connie said...

That was a beautiful post Heidi. Are you girls holding up okay over there without Greg? We're at the end of week 3 here but leave on Wednesday to go to Chicago for the last vision night so get a break in the middle of our 5 week time without Dave here. Thankful for that!