Hello to all of our loyal supporters, faithful update-followers, prayer warriors, and anyone else who might just happen to be reading this! Hope Singers 2014 is definitely on the roll…with our fourth program now tucked carefully under our belts. Today’s program was a very unique one though! We were privileged to be allowed to sing in a Polish prison in Wronki, thanks …to the pastor of a Pentecostal church in Poznan who arranged it for us. He said he goes to that prison once every week and spends most of the day there. It was obvious, by the reactions of the inmates, that he has established good relationships with them and has quite a ministry there.
We had about an hour’s drive from our hostel to the prison, and upon arriving there were greeted by the pastor. After turning in our passports and a few introductory words from the pastor, we entered the prison as they called our names. (Good practice understanding our names pronounced Polish-style.) We were led thru several metal doors and a lovely courtyard to where we would be singing. We only sang about half of our program repertoire, but, to borrow words from our director, the program “seemed to be a strong connection”. Beings this was a new thing for the mission and Hope Singers, we didn’t really know what to expect. As usual, there seemed to be a definite interest and connection when we tried out our Polish tongues. After our songs, the pastor suggested that the inmates sing several songs for us, which they did…followed by his request that we ALL sing “Amazing Grace” together (in Polish, of course). Previous years of singing that song are definitely helpful in times like that! It was a lovely time of worship though…even if we couldn’t always understand everything that was sung.
After leaving the prison, we traveled about another hour to Poznan, where someone had prepared quite a spread for lunch. Pierogis being the main course was cause for excitement! This was served in the pastor’s church. Interestingly, it and several surrounding buildings were built during WWII for recovering German soldiers.
Following lunch, the bus dropped us off near the town square. We only had about 2 hours to tour around the town of Poznan, but we got glimpses of its history and beauty. (And many of us found souvenirs to buy also.) It was lovely to walk down the cobblestone streets and gaze at all the unique European-style buildings including a few communist-looking ones here and there as well.
Once we were loaded on the bus again, we headed the 1+ hour(s) back to our hostel for the evening. The evening consisted of floats and a time of sharing and overall getting to know each other better. We appreciate your interest; please keep praying for us!