Polish Adventist history preserved

From left, Dr Darius Jankiewicz, Pastor Jan Jankiewicz, South Pacific Division heritage director David Jones, and Dr John Skrzypaszek, former director of the Ellen G White Research Centre. (Credit: Pastor Mark Pearce)

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A momentous occasion has occurred for Polish Adventists in Australia, whose unique spiritual and ethnic history is now being preserved for future generations.

As of June 22, Polish Adventists can view the history and publications of the Polish Church in Australia, and be continually inspired by stories from their heritage.

The Adventist Heritage Centre was pleased to welcome three important figures of Polish Adventism in Australia to achieve this handover. Pastor Jan Jankiewicz, on behalf of Pastor Eugeniusz Majchrowski (historian and author), presented the Heritage Centre archives with these rich historical records which represent a lifetime of passionate work.

Since his arrival to Australia in the 1960s, Pastor Majchrowski has been chronicling the details of the Australian Adventist Polish community. In retirement, he compiled his book which records more than 50 years of Polish Adventist history in Australia, from the establishment of churches to more recent events such as the community during the COVID-19 pandemic.

This book, and other resources given to the Heritage Centre, are valuable records of the spiritual life of Polish migrants.

“Polish Adventists in Australia significantly contributed to the life of the Church,” said Dr Darius Jankiewicz, field secretary at the South Pacific Division. “We hope that other ethnic Adventist communities will be inspired to share their history and publications with the Adventist Heritage Centre, so that future generations can appreciate their cultural history.”

Information of interest includes records of the first Polish church in Australia established in Wallsend on May 2, 1960. The church’s history can be traced to the current vibrant congregation still attending. Important ethnic events for the Adventist Church such as the first Polish Youth Congress held at Eraring in December 1970 can be researched thanks to this generous handover.

There is great hope embedded in this venture, as the stories of important figures like Pastor Jerzy Lipski and Pastor Jan Skrzypaszek, father of Dr John Skrzypaszek, historical documents and inspiring photographs will now be preserved for countless generations. All who were involved in this significant event sincerely hope that this handover inspires an appreciation of cultural identity and encourages Polish Adventists in their spiritual walk.

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