Welcome to the Church of Peace, where we have been hosting guests since 1989.
We both moved here from Cieszyn (in Silesia).
For 25 years we have been the hosts of the Church of Peace. The renovation of the church, conducted by specialists hired from Poland and Germany, was initiated in 1990s by Rev. Waldemar Pytel.
For a quarter of a century we have been able to carry out a thorough renovation of the church and Peace Square. The maintenance works that have been carried out already include the installation of modern security systems, the replacement of the shingle roof, the strengthening of the walls, as well as the renovation of the altar, pulpit, large organs, gate, house of bell ringer, watchman’s house and evangelical high school. A part of the cemetery was also renovated, while the maintenance of 300-year-old Bibles and antique books continues to this day. While these works bring us great pride, the thing we are most proud of is the fact that our church entered the UNESCO World Heritage Site list in 2001.
Bishop Waldemar Pytel is a pastor of the Evangelical-Augsburg in Świdnica and the Bishop of the Wrocław diocese of the Lutheran Church, which stretches from Karpacz to Szczecin. Frequently awarded for the protection of cultural sites and for his ecumenical activity, Bishop Waldemar Pytel is an avid football fan who cheers for Śląsk Wrocław and FC Barcelona.
Bożena Pytel, a sociologist, is responsible for the public relations and all the cultural and educational activities relating to the Church of Peace. Thanks to her efforts, a 17th century journal of one of Świdnica’s inhabitants was able to be published. A play based on the journal’s contents is also now being brought to the live stage by the actors of Teatr Stary in Krakow. In addition, Bożena Pytel has created the “Dolnośląski Szlak UNESCO” (“The Lower-Silesian UNESCO Trail”), which promotes Lower-Silesian historical monuments in Poland. As well as this, she has organised photography and journalism workshops for junior high school pupils from Toruń, Zamość and Wieliczka, plus creative writing classes (among others) for high school pupils and seniors from Świdnica. The author and organizer of the Artistic Summer in Plac Pokoju (“Peace Square”), Bożena has received a cultural award from the President of Świdnica.
We have been married for almost 30 years now and have two adult sons.
Our parish has been in existence since 1652, when permission for the church to be built was first issued. Since that time, services have been constantly conducted here. To begin with, people prayed in a temporary structure, which was referred to as “God’s Hut”.
In 1657 the first service took place within the Church’s walls, and the faithful have been praying there ever since. This continuity is truly an exceptional case, as after World War II there was a huge movement of population in the area. Lower Silesia became a part of the Polish state and its German, mostly Protestant inhabitants, left to find a home in other lands. The newcomers from different parts of Poland were mostly Catholics. The Church of Peace, which was accustomed to holding at least a couple of thousand people, became abandoned. Today, only around 120 people gather in our Holy Trinity Parish. Despite this number however, our community plays a very active role. We are united by the daily services that are held not only in the Church of Peace, but also in Bielawa and Dzierżoniów. We meet for mass ceremonies in the Church of Peace on Sundays at 10 am.
We are Protestants, more precisely – Evangelics, and more specifically – Lutherans. mi.
We belong to the Lutheran Church, which is the largest Protestant church in Poland. Bishop Jerzy Samiec is the head of the Church, which has 71 thousand faithful (most of whom are from the Silesia region around Cieszyn Śląski) and we gather within the six dioceses. The name Lutheran Church comes from the creed composed in 1530 at the Diet of Augsburg. We refer to the Reformation initiated in 1517 by the Rev. Martin Luther, who encouraged the renewal of the Church. We recognize the sacraments of baptism and communion, confirmation, general confession and marriage. We believe in heaven and hell, we reject purgatory. Our priests do not apply celibacy. The service consists of the Liturgy of the Word and the Liturgy of Eucharist. Our basic principles are:
Solum Verbum (only Word) – The Word of God is the only source of grace and salvation.
Solus Christus (only Christ) – Jesus Christ is the mediator between God and man, belief in him is the way to salvation. Only he can be the object of worship, he is the head of the Church, not the pope. We do not recognize the cult of saints or Mary, yet still we show her respect.
Sola Scriptura (only Scripture) – the only source of faith and point of reference for an evangelical Christian is the Bible, and not conciliar ruling.
Sola Gratia (only Grace) – this is the grace of God that gives us salvation. A man can be justified by God “for free/with no good deeds required” from the perspective of Grace.