This article first appeared in the ITMI Monthly February 2015 Edition.
The quaint square of Poland’s oldest and very steeped-in-traditions city, Kalisz, was aglow with warmth and activity. Passers-by were drawn to the merriment, as delicious, warm food soothed their shivering, while contributing to a worthy cause warmed their hearts.
The square was lined with booths displaying gorgeous, homemade Christmas decorations sold to benefit several children of the community who were facing serious medical issues.
And the end result?
Over $7000 raised to help the families of these precious children!
Two-hundred fifty audio versions of Piotr Zaremba’s new Polish Bible Translation were distributed.
Many heard about and participated with the local chapter of Bread of Life, which offers counseling, Bible studies, clothing closets and David’s Club – a martial arts class for street kids – to the poorest of the poor families in Kalisz.
Over 1500 families were served through Bread of Life Kalisz last year!
All this is the fruit of Tomek Jezyk’s work, who himself found Jesus through volunteering with Bread of Life and translating the gospel to homeless men in the train station for ITMI’s Richard Nungesser years ago. Tomek is now the Director of Bread of Life, Kalisz.
Tomek says, “We help their children fight for their lives. And then, when their patents ask us why—why we care? Why we help…we are able to share the unbelievable love of God with them—and their lives, hearts, and families are eternally changed.”
Tomek at Christmas at the Square.
ITMI Director, Steve Evers describes Tomek this way, “Tomek’s nothing’s-too-big, little-by-little, bulldog attitude lets him pull things off that are unbelievable. He has become respected and very influential in Kalisz, and he’s using that influence to help sick children.”
Like the birth of a king some 2,000 years ago that it commemorates, Christmas in the Square has become a life changing and life giving event that blesses the people of Kalisz in so many ways.
Children of Kalisz enjoy bubbles at Christmas at the Square.
Christmas in the Square is a great example of Tomek’s commitment to Kalisz and his ability to bless the city. It’s also a testament to what can happen when many people come together to serve, just as ITMI’s supporters come together month after month to accomplish so many great things!