I must begin this post with some sad news because my heart is heavy today. We learned this morning that Beata Kołak lost her battle with cancer and went to be with Jesus. Beata was about my age, and although I didn’t know her very well I just thought she was an amazing lady. I first met her in 2013 when she was one of the primary organizers of my talk in the city of Ostróda on infant loss. Two years ago she and her husband Zbigniew were the deans of the Ukrainian Children’s Camp. They came each evening and helped with the final session of the day as well as our big “Olympic” event. She was just overflowing with a joyful spirit that I admired, and it breaks my heart to hear of her passing. The funeral is Thursday. We just changed our train tickets to go to Ostróda a day early to be able to attend. Will you please pray for her family? She leaves behind a husband and son, who I think is in his early twenties.
The second stop on our church tour is the one I have been particularly looking forward to visiting – Kołobrzeg. Ben has been here twice and Rockville Christian has had a long relationship with this church, supporting them in prayer and financially. I’ve been told that Pastor Piotr Karel used to write letters to RCC which were read before the congregation, a tradition I encouraged him to bring back! Piotr sat down next to me the first night we were here and said, “Rac-hel-a, (the Polish pronunciation of my name – I love it), tell me how Rockville Christian Church is doing.” So I filled him in on some recent changes and asked him to be praying for us in our transitions. Yesterday, we were privileged to worship with the congregation. Ben stood at the start of the service and gave greetings on behalf of the brothers and sisters at Rockville Christian. There were several baptisms and the church is facing the good problem of finding themselves in need of more space. There was standing room only this week and they had to set up an overflow room with the service broadcasted to a large TV. We are actually living at the church for several days, as they have quite a few rooms with beds and baths for housing guests.
Ben and the other PCM board members met with the leaders at Kołobrzeg, and then did the same yesterday evening at church #3 – the Christian Church in Koszalin (a different church than the Messianic Jewish congregation mentioned before). This morning, Piotr Karel took us on a tour of his city, then the kids and I got to spend a little time on the Baltic Sea with the Korytkowski family while the men visited church #4 in Białogard.