Photo - Kaka

Kaka

I need Jesus every day of my life. Jesus tells me in the Bible that without Him I cant do anything. I have the gift and capacity today to play soccer because God gave it to me.

Photo - Ivona Škvorcová

Ivona Škvorcová

I noticed a little lump on my neck and it changed my plans and my life. We will have to remove it, exclaimed my doctor. It is just a simple operation… I spent three days in the hospital and I waited three weeks for biopsy results. I wasn’t worried at all. I was a 22-year old university student, full of energy and vitality. I didn’t expect it could be something serious. On 22 February 2006 the doctor told me: “It is positive“. I didn’t even understand what it means. Everybody in my family was shocked – I had CANCER. I was confused. I had lots of questions and fears.

Photo - Augustín Ugróczy

Augustín Ugróczy

Hi everybody, whoever you are and wherever you are – YOU ARE DISCIPLES. That’s the way I call my boys and invite them at our regular PAJTA meetings.

Photo - James Manjackal

James Manjackal

He prayed: "Father in Heaven, send your Son Jesus now to this priest suffering from kidney T.B., kidney stones and infections and restore him complete health of body and soul". Then I thought in my mind that he might have seen the hospital chart where my sicknesses were reported!

Photo - Róbert Slamka

Róbert Slamka

I am 52 years old and I am a lawyer. I have a beautiful beloved wife, Helena, and 5 beautiful children, Róbert, Jakub, Andrej, Annamária-Rút, and Lukáš.

Photo - Mudr. Silvester Krčméry CSc.

Mudr. Silvester Krčméry CSc.

If I have to be punished for what I did – i.e. for the goodness, truth, and Christ – I wouldn’t choose the smallest punishment, but the most terrible one; I would be so happy if I could die for Christ, although I know that I am not worthy of such a great grace.

Photo - MUDr. Emília Vlčková

MUDr. Emília Vlčková

I healed my daughter who had bronchitis, after antibiotics showed no effect. I had a wart and it disappeared on the following day after I had used my homoeopathic drugs.

Photo - Vlado Žák

Vlado Žák

I knew about God, but I didn't know Him. I saw God only as a strict judge. One of the predominant feelings when I thought about God was a sort of fear. Today, I know I was completely wrong.

Photo - Dominik Dobrovodský

Dominik Dobrovodský

Yes, bones were my life issue. I was born with a fracture. Since then I had several fractures during all my childhood, every time I fell down. I spent a lot of time in hospitals. I suffered a lot. But I also saw other people suffering. It was for me great life experience, great learning experience. During this experience I understood that God is always with me and He never abandons me. This attitude of praise became (and it is continuously becoming) my expression of love towards God.

Photo - Nick Vujicic

Nick Vujicic

I am thankful to have been born 31 years ago with no arms and no legs. I won’t pretend my life is easy, but through the love of my parents, loved ones, and faith in God, I have overcome my adversity and my life is now filled with joy and purpose.

Photo - Jozef Demjan

Jozef Demjan

When I was a child I was sexually abused by an older boy. We lived in poverty. I experienced occult practices, depression, homosexuality, and suicide attempts. Only faith in Jesus Christ brought light to my life.

Photo - Marek Nikolov

Marek Nikolov

The aim of the “Jesus Heals” prayer gatherings is experiencing the fact that God is Love. He is Love that wants to give itself to other people. God wants to show us His mercy even through healing, signs, wonders, and miracles.

Photo - Rick Warren

Rick Warren

People ask me: What is the purpose of life? And I respond: In a nutshell, life is preparation for eternity. We were made to last forever, and God wants us to be with Him in Heaven.

Photo - Renáta Ocilková

Renáta Ocilková

During chemotherapy I lost my menstrual cycle. After about half-a-year I asked my gynaecologist – oncologist about that. I was afraid I was going to badly react to his answer. He told me:
“It’s normal. Your menstrual cycles will never return.”

Photo - Anton Srholec

Anton Srholec

Faith and love for Jesus and for his cause filled all my heart and I was ready to offer my life for this.

Photo - Denis Blaho

Denis Blaho

I started to do fortune-telling and I said things that resulted to be truthful. I used to predict things that really happened in near future. Sometimes I read people’s thoughts. I disdained Christian religion. I had a bad opinion about believers and acquaintances who were not profound believers.

Photo - Bohuš Živčák

Bohuš Živčák

Despite persecution during the Communist era (or actually because of Communist persecution) my search of God became a continuous adventure. Pilgrimage and travelling rather than studying. When I studied at high school God came dramatically closer to me.

Photo - Veronika Barátová

Veronika Barátová

I always have wonderful memories of my return to God; still today they are pretty important. Everything happened during my university studies at times of normalizing Communism.

Photo - Oto Mádr

Oto Mádr

This epoch is not easy at all for Christians; but for big-format Christians it is a great and marvelous epoch. “If they persecuted Me, they will also persecute you.“ In such glorious moments the Church sings to the Lord a heroic song of love and faithfulness. It is a privilege and a gift: to live just now, to love, and to fight.

Photo - Lucia Tužinská

Lucia Tužinská

My core problem was – how can I trust God again?! How can I understand Him? What has happened? What we believed in before suddenly became not valid. We needed to reevaluate our faith from the foundation.

Photo - Martin Hunčár

Martin Hunčár

My conversion does not fall under the category “extraordinary”. I know you would like to hear about the miraculous conversion of a former drug-addicted or alcohol-addicted. I was neither drug-addicted nor alcohol-addicted. Maybe this is the reason why my conversion was even more miraculous.

Photo - Dan Baumann

Dan Baumann

The beatings would start and they would be slapping in the face, hitting in the stomach, sometimes kicking. “I struggled with faith, ‘Was God with me? Did He love me? If God is good why would He allow me to go through this situation?

Photo - Dária Miezgová

Dária Miezgová

But I was also interested very much in the communist ideals as in something that surpassed the ordinary life. So I became a member of a communist party – because I was convinced and I wanted it. And in spite of the fact I went to church and believed in God. I did not feel it as a contradiction

Photo - Matúš Demko

Matúš Demko

Then I directly felt that God is a living being, close to us. Back then, God, our Lord, clearly and expressly intervened into my life. He completely changed it. I became another person.

Photo - Richard Vašečka

Richard Vašečka

My grandfather from my mother’s side had a great influence on my life. Besides that he loved me very much and spent much time with me, he became my ideal and inspiration in a faith, but also in a male character.

Photo - Branislav Škripek

Branislav Škripek

I was born and brought up as an atheist and I can confirm that I had never been told me anything about God during my first 20 years of life. It was something that was an unknown concept for me.

Photo - Sasa Patalakh

Sasa Patalakh

Drugs, sex, Ukrainian mafia, and prison…
“…the story of a young man from Ukraine freed by God…”

Photo - Ondrej Tarana OFM cap.

Ondrej Tarana OFM cap.

I was indeed horrified that I don’t know God and His Love although I was ministering in the church.

Photo - Dominic McDermott

Dominic McDermott

Hearing from God through dreams. Biblical basis, Why God would use dreams, The process ...

Photo - Štefan Esztergályos

Štefan Esztergályos

I got more and more entangled in different occult practices. I applied myself to astrology, healing (reiki) and I practiced martial arts. Instead of prayer I meditated in solitude, which pulled me many times away from the life’s reality.

Photo - Geoff and Gina Poulter

Geoff and Gina Poulter

We had decided with a great sadness that we had to go where we were being fed and leave the Catholic Church. Just as we were about to make this public statement Geoff had an open vision which simultaneously was confirmed to Gina through a word from the Lord.

Photo - P. Raniero Cantalamessa, ofmcap

P. Raniero Cantalamessa, ofmcap

Something of the kind must happen once in our lives for us to be true, convinced Christians, and overjoyed to be so.

Story - David Matthews
Celebrate!

small_David Matthews1.jpg

Former pastor of evangelical church who become a catholic.

I have been involved with the Celebrate conference for more years than I care to recount. I have been privileged to be a speaker at many different kinds of conferences around the world and in my opinion Celebrate is one of the very best!

Why do I say that? Well it is charismatic and full of life. It is also very well organised and administrated. Over the years Sue Whitehead has done a great job with the bookings so that when you arrive they are expecting you and room keys and info are on hand. On site there are numerous people from stewards to ‘stream’ leaders who work tirelessly to make your stay pleasant and enjoyable. I really appreciate that. It’s what allows Celebrate to be so ‘spontaneous’ and spiritually enriching.

Celebrate is a family conference. It is not full of holy people doing holy things 24/7! It is full of families of all kinds with a full programme of activities with something for everyone. You can opt in or opt out to whatever level you like after all it is a holiday!

The all age aspect in my view is its strongest aspect. From ‘Little Stars’ to grandparents they all find a place with lots of encouragement and support. Over the years it has been my greatest joy to see teenagers and parents rediscover their faith and find their level of service in the Church and society.

Celebrate is a Roman Catholic conference that has maintained a very healthy and productive ecumenism. I attended for many years as a Protestant Pastor. In that time I was always respectfully received and warmly listened to while speaking, with even a few ‘amens’ of encouragement thrown in for good measure! This aspect of celebrate is particularly important. Often we have wrong ideas about each other simply because we don’t get a chance to meet the other side or interact with them.

This interaction at celebrate allows for healthy social encounters and even theological discussion (for those who like that kind of thing). Having said all that there is of course no pressure whatsoever to convert or conform. In many many years of involvement with Celebrate I cannot remember even one attempt to get me to become Roman Catholic. I can say that I was many times almost embarrassed and often humbled with the warmth of love and appreciation I received. Let me give you one example of that.

Some years ago I was sitting in on a committee meeting. We were reviewing our progress so far and praying for the few days left that we would be able to follow the Holy Spirit. By the way there is a lot of prayer before after and during Celebrate. Much of it, not all, is ‘hidden’ and maybe all the more powerful for that. Anyway back to the committee meeting (must we I hear you say). One person there thoughtfully felt that “we have not honoured our Lady yet”. Charles suggested that we pray and discern what we might do. I being an evangelical Pastor and not known for my shyness’, shared that I had a teaching on Mary quickly adding the condition that it was only what the Scriptures said about her. “That is what we want” said Charles encouragingly and so with the full approval of all present I was duly appointed to deliver said talk to the conference.

I will never forget that night. Having boldly put myself forward I was now wracked with doubt and foreboding. What was I doing! How can an evangelical protestant Pastor give a talk on Mary to a Roman Catholic audience, not to mention all the Priests and Religious that were present!! To my amazement, gratitude and relief it was warmly received and even applauded. That is Celebrate for you.

I have given that talk on Mary many times since but it was my involvement with Celebrate that taught me that if we speak in love and respect to each other we just might discover that there is more that unites us than divides. Ecumenism at Celebrate is a healthy holding to one’s own traditions and norms while seeking to understand and listen to the others point of view. Since that time it has been my great privilege to be received into the Roman Catholic Church, on Easter Saturday (2011). As you can guess that was a momentous decision for me and my wife Mary and we have prayed, laughed and cried over it.

We as a couple are now living out ecumenism, as I enjoy the sacraments and friendships at my local parish church and she remains part of our local evangelical church where we enjoy fellowship and good Bible teaching.

Many have asked me why I have taken this step. It is hard to explain. I feel a bit like Peter in the house of Cornelius (Acts 10). It all feels a little bit alien and I know the church is where God wants me to be, but am still trying to understand more fully the customs and language of this household.

My wife’s advice is both practical and spiritual. She simply says, “Let the dust settle and then we will see the way forward”. So watch this space as the dust settles. I do know that Celebrate and its people had a lot do to with my joining the church as I have seen there a Catholicism that is charismatic, vibrant and very very attractive.


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Good news

  • Raniero Cantalamessa
    he Baptism in the Spirit's effectiveness in reactivating baptism consists in this: finally man contributes his part -- namely, he makes a choice of faith, prepared in repentance, that allows the that allows the work of God to set itself free and to emanate all its strength. It is as if the plug is pulled and the light is switched on. The gift of God is finally "untied" and the Spirit is allowed to flow like a ftragrance in the Christian life.
    2017-08-24
  • Peter Hocken
    During the night between Friday and Saturday, in the early morning hours of 10 June 2017, the Lord called back to Him a great man, Father Peter Hocken. He died at the age of almost 85. He was a servant of God, a friend, a priest who loyally served the Body of Christ until his last breath, all the world round. The Lord gave him an extraordinary intellect and wisdom, together with the experience of baptism in the Holy Spirit. He also received from God the talent and ability to provide specific and comprehensible theological explanations and descriptions of spiritual experiences that are taking place within the Church, notably after the Second Vatican Council.
    2017-06-11
  • Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
    "I have a dream," he began, "that one day on the red hills of Georgia, sons of former slaves and sons of former slave-owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood. "I have a dream my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character."
    2017-03-08
  • Peter Dufka SJ
    We all know, based on our personal experience, that the cooperation with most intelligent people is not often easy. These people usually do not establish friendship easily. It is interesting also that university graduates with an honour degree usually do not fit in to the working environment in the best way and that their high intellect is of a little help in overcoming personal or marriage crises.
    2015-09-30
  • Marek Nikolov
    The aim of the “Jesus Heals” prayer gatherings is experiencing the fact that God is Love. He is Love that wants to give itself to other people. God wants to show us His mercy even through healing, signs, wonders, and miracles.
    2015-09-10

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