Testimonies

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I was invited to the Forum by God and I’m happy to have answered His call. The time spent with the Emmanuel Community and with the people from all around the world was full of the fruits of the Holy Spirit. That was my first meeting with a Christian community, but surely not the last one. I praise the Lord for all the miracles he has done and for the signs of Him working in our lives.

Joanna
So… I was sitting on my bed in the middle of the night, writing these strange things in my notebook. I can’t say how weird I am feeling right now. Exactly a year ago, in July, I was just a step away from depression, they had to pull me out of my bed by force (with different outcomes, of course), I was trying to self-harm myself, I had suicidal thoughts and was generally far from being well. I won’t get into the details, because I don’t want to immerse you all in black despair, that’s not the point. Long story short – I came here with a shattered heart, deeply wounded by people who used to be close to me, with a teeny-tiny flame of hope in me: maybe this is the time, maybe this is the place. Well, it was the time and it was the place. Don’t get me wrong – it didn’t happen at the drop of a hat. The whole YEAR was a giant, gradual change, but this Forum was the cherry on top and a closure to a certain stage. One day, completely accidentally (yeah…) I came across some info about the Forum. I honestly didn’t understand much, I had no-one to go with… so I hopped on a train and came. Częstochowa welcomed me with heavy rain and I couldn’t find my bus. When I found it, I accidentally got off a couple of stops too early. When I came to terms with the fact that – well – I will just go by foot, the departing bus completely soaked me with lovely puddle water. That was a great beginning of my hour-long hike, with everything wet and with moments of despair, when I just wanted to go home or curl in the middle of the sidewalk and cry. Mysteriously I got lost even with a GPS on in my phone, I was walking in circles with a heavy suitcase and I said to myself – well, the more good is going to happen, the more *someone* is going to try to stop me from getting there. Apparently, he forgot what women are made of… I felt like I had just run a marathon through Niagara Falls. I finally got there, and… It wasn’t any better! The weather sucked, the room was terrible, I got nothing from the homily… A bit shook up with a vision of a couple of days of such terrors I was preparing to run back home; I am glad it never happened! Every day was a breakthrough for me. Every evening I went to sleep happy, smiling, with a thought that it is surely impossible to be more blessed. And God showed me every day that He can do 2, 3, 10 times more and is capable of creating situations I would never be able to even imagine. It was on fire! I would write down some sentences from the homilies, whole texts from the praise, nice words from people I didn’t even know, intercessional prayer, adoration, mission, mercy evening on Jasna Góra… it all came together, started to make sense. To a human, who felt very mediocre, came God. With the whole greatness of His love and promises of healing; telling me I am very important and that I am capable of sharing this joy with others. At the beginning I was often alone, sitting on the side, without strength to speak, looking at all these crazy people during praise and morning warmups (that looked more like some ritual dances than something I would do…) Funnily enough, during intercessional prayer I was specifically told to focus on the fragment of the Bible when a man is healed and goes to the temple JUMPING and praising God. The next day I was determined not to take it literally and to further sit and look from the side; I thought it would be crazy to think I was meant to do what the healed man did. Well, a couple of hours later this introvert danced the whole evening through and saw it as a shame, that it didn’t last till the morning. Well, today is the last day of the Forum and I think I should be preparing myself for what can still come... I finish the Forum with great joy and peace in my heart, sure of a new life beginning. I will miss all those wonderful people I’ve been allowed to meet, and who let me not feel alone anymore. I haven’t managed to describe 1/10 of what’s in my head. I am not saying that everyone who will come to the forum will experience a life-changing 180-degree turn in their lives, but they will CERTAINLY experience something important. 100 % sure. But still – my example shows, that a 180-degree change IS possible, and that God has perfect timing and a perfect scenario. My timing was now. How do you know God will not answer your prayers HERE? Sometimes a shy feeling is enough. Thanks for reading; I hope you didn’t fall asleep on the way…! Praise the Lord!

K.
For me the Forum was incredible under many aspects. Above all, it was a time of incredible meetings. Meetings with God, whom I felt here more than anywhere else, and meetings with incredible people. With incredible married couples, who have shown me how to love conjugally and how to respect each other; with incredible priests who have shown me Jesus and with people, who had this immense joy about them and through that created an incredible atmosphere. Praise the Lord!

Piotrek
Na Forum zaprosił mnie Bóg, i jestem szczęśliwa, że odpowiedziałam na Jego zaproszenie. Czas spędzony wraz ze Wspólnotą Emmanuel i młodymi z całego świata pełen był owoców Ducha Świętego. To pierwsze moje spotkanie ze wspólnotą chrześcijan, lecz na pewno nie ostatnie.  Chwała Panu, za wszystkie cuda, których dokonał i za świadectwa Jego działania w naszym życiu.

Joanna
Dear friends! Thank you so much for your welcome in Czestochowa! There were so nice days here with a lot of joy being together, to praise together, to love Christ together and to receive His own and personal love. And to have a fun… J We pray for each other!

Joži
I came to the Forum all sceptical about God, faith, and the Church. For a while I have been living believing that God is someone’s/something’s creation, made to help people be nicer, better, to let them have hope (thus being more productive), be more predictable, and then, just in case, we have a nice pretext for a religious war (etc…). In all this searching I genuinely wanted the truth, and to live in the truth. During the Forum I realized that I can’t make up my own theories about the complexity of the universe, I can’t make God up. It gives me nothing but wasted time. I understood why God has the right to speak for Himself and I let Him speak. Everything in my head got clearer, more ordered, but I never expected He would start talking right away. And so clearly… And it has to be that way. HE SPEAKS. My choice is to believe or not to believe. Just like with people. I am so thankful for the intercessional prayer. During the Forum I went to confession. I don’t know how, but since then I smile a lot more. Same people, same situations, my perception of them – different. I am just sure that I met God. In the whole Trinity, and I dream of meeting Him more, getting to know Him more. In everyday life. How good it is, that there is so much time for ADORATION during Forum.

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God reminded me during Forum that He loved me, and he let me notice it; for example, through other people’s goodness. I‘ve received graces that helped me put some things in my life in order, to see what’s its goal. Some very important topics were touched during these couple of days. Coming to Częstochowa I had various worries. I was filled with hope, I was able to calm down. The Lord was speaking to us through His Word, to which I intend to come back in the future. I don’t regret coming again this year! PRAISE THE LORD!

Paulina
The first time I went to the Forum was when a priest I knew invited me to go. I came, I saw, I loved it! Whenever I can I come to the Forum in the summer because I see how God is working – in me and in others. The only regret I have is that I haven’t discovered it earlier!

Markos
Through the Forum God found a new way to me heart: prayer and adoration. Praise the Lord!

Janek
“You are a beloved child of God”, a friend told me after Mercy Evening – just like that; no occasion, no ceremonies. But that was the first time I actually understood that it’s about me. I think He really wants every one of us to hear this sentence with our hearts. Maybe this year during Forum? 😉

Marzena
I am very happy to have been to this year’s Forum, full of love and God’s goodness, because you become who you look up to. I learned to love; to love my neighbour, how to make decisions and to understand what femininity and masculinity is. I am grateful for this time and for the people I’ve met.

Martyna
Thanks to Forum, I am even more optimistic! I opened up to other people, I met incredible people and I discovered my vocation. I also discovered family as a great value. It was a wonderful time!

Żaneta
Until I came to the Forum, I didn’t know that the Church can be so… warm, joyful, beautiful! Rest here... http://switprzyherbacie.pl/2018/07/forum-mlodych-kilka-slow-od-uczestniczki/

Magdalena
The Forum is a beautiful time of God, of meeting wonderful people, full of joy. I’s a time for thinking, for meeting yourself and for beating your own weaknesses. It’s a way of getting away from your everyday life and spending your summer holidays differently!

Dominika
The time spent at the Forum was a special time of arranging and healing the relation with my parents. There was also a time for common prayer in Our Lady chapel on Jasna Góra in the programme. That was the moment when I felt that something changed, I could let go; and when some guy near me started crying when he heard the same words that moved me, I knew this was no accident.

Maciej
The Forum was a very special time for me and helped me realise that prayer is indeed a conversation: I was talking to God, and he replied me in the words I’ve heard – from the Bible, but also from other people, in meetings and coincidences. I’ve met a lot of great people too. 

Klaudia
The Forum was the first time I’ve met so many young people who aren’t stiff and boring and who truly believe! I’ve had the opportunity to meet many great priests and even bishops, who talked with me just like that about difficult stuff and helped me. I understood that Church isn’t a place for old, rosary-praying grannies only, but it is a place for young people too! I converted during the Forum and my life gained sense, so it was absolutely worth coming!

Michał
The workshops about adoration and about relationships were fantastic! I really liked the praise with beautiful music too. Thanks to the Forum I discovered the sacramental adoration.

Piotrek

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