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"Faithful in trials and afterwards"

"Faithful in trials and afterwards"

On Saturday, September 26, 2009, members of the Association for Former Prisoners of Conscience enjoyed the hospitality of the Adventist Church in Ploiesti. This was already the 17th annual meeting of those persecuted for their faith during the previous r

October 13, 2009 | AARC

On Saturday, September 26, 2009, members of the Association for Former Prisoners of Conscience enjoyed the hospitality of the Adventist Church in Ploiesti. This was already the 17th annual meeting of those persecuted for their faith during the previous regime.

Organized under the motto "Faithful in trials and afterwards" (Luke 22:28), the meeting was attended by Nelu Burcea, Public Affairs and Religious Liberty Director of the Seventh-day Adventist church in Romania, Valeriu Petrescu, Adventist Media Center Director, Virgil Peicu, Director of Retirement Fund and Gabriel Vasilescu, President of the Retired Ministers’ Association of the Adventist church, showing the church’s appreciation to those who suffered under the communist persecution.

Former Adventist prisoners, aged between 52 and 82, recalled their experiences of faithfulness to God during the communist persecution, especially between the years 1950 and 1980.

Those were hard days. Days of forced labor at the Danube - Black Sea Canal. Days of suffering reducing humanity dignity - in prison cells, in dark solitary confinements, in chains and handcuffs. Days of hunger and beatings...

Why did something like this happen in the 20th century in one of the European countries?

According to Titu Ghejan, President of the Association of Former Prisoners of Conscience and organizer of the event: “It is the same spirit that drove Cain to kill his brother, Saul to hate David, and religious leaders to kill the Savior of the world, which generated centuries of hatred against the followers of Jesus Christ.”

According to a conservative estimate some one thousand Adventists suffered from communist persecution because they stood for their faith, wanting to be faithful to God’s Law, and desiring to observe the Seventh-day Sabbath. Sometimes it was just because they dare to talk about faith in divine inspiration of the Bible and the need for the only Savior and Mediator between man and God, or even because they simply requested the non-combatancy status.

The participants shared these things with the visitors with a spirit of, "not what we have done, but what God did for us.” As one of the Association members said: “We praise and give thanks to our God and Savior who has sustained us and used us as a testimony of the fact that we can be and remain ‘believers throughout any challenge’ and at any time.”

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