April 2, 2016

Polish President Tells Adventists, ‘God Is Always the Most Important’

Trans-European Division

Polish President Andrzej Duda declared God and His law superior over all things during a meeting with a delegation of Seventh-day Adventist leaders at the presidential palace in Warsaw.

Duda, 43, also accepted a special edition of the Signs of the Times magazine, several documentary films, and a selection of eBooks and audiobooks as a gift from Jaroslaw Dzięgielewski, president of the Adventist Church in Poland.

"God is always the most important, and His ordinances, especially the moral ones in which we believe, build both a good world and a good society,” Duda told the group of 11 Adventist leaders.

He noted that mutual respect and understanding leads to a solid foundation for community.

The meeting with Duda, elected to office in 2015, took several months to organize, and it came as the president met with several religious minority leaders in the Roman Catholic-dominant country.

Duba is not the only politician to receive what local Adventist leaders have dubbed the “VIP package” of religious literature. Delegations of pastors and local church members have been making personal visits to the offices of Poland’s national lawmakers with similar gifts in the weeks since the Jan. 14 meeting with Duda.

This VIP evangelistic initiative — undertaken by the Polish church together with its religious liberty department and the Signs of the Times publishing house — aims to reach all lawmakers and other politicians, church leaders said. The rationale behind the program, they said, comes from Romans 13:1-4, which says in part, “Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities,” and 1 Peter 2:13-14, 17, whose instructions include, “Honor all people. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the king.”

Church leaders expressed hope that the materials would help politicians as they govern Poland and give them a better understanding of the religious minorities who live in the country.