with Martha Kilpatrick and hosted by John Enslow
with Special Guest Vicki Harris missionary to Vienna, Austria
(M) In that place is there going to be another visit? Of reconciliation?
(Vicki) Ah here at this, anywhere? Ah, this group that I mentioned to you, Weg der Versohnung, ah is committed to reconciliation in all different arenas here in Austria. The one I’m most familiar with that some friends here, actually not too far away, are doing research on and working to bring preparation for, is between Catholics and Protestants, and what happened during the Reformation and the Counter Reformation, and the withholding of the Word of God from people. And it is two very precious to me renewal Catholic, it’s a husband and wife couple. They are working with great diligence to prepare a way for us to stand as Catholic believers and Protestant believers and forgive each other for those things that happened historically between us that divided the Body of Christ. And um, that’s one of the things that I know is being worked on right now. With regards to anti-Semitism and so forth, I don’t know of anything specifically other than I know that we are believing for and looking forward to Messianic congregations coming again to Austria. And there have been some visits by Rabbi’s, by some others, kind of testing the waters, perhaps, for lack of a better term, to see how that might come about. But that’s, at this point, that is what I know about it.
(M) Well John, you were almost a tour guide through this; finding out where we needed to be. What was your, what were your thoughts and impressions in such a place?
(J) We’ve been to several ah memorials. We’ve been to Yad Vashem (Holocaust Memorial in Israel ), we’ve been to the Holocaust Museum in Washington, and I’m always completely overwhelmed at it. It’s ah; it’s such a complete picture of the evil that man can come to. And I don’t really have words, I never have words, I never have words. You know, I have fought evil in my life, and ah, this is such a level of evil and such a level of giving yourself over to the satanic and the demonic, that I don’t know if I go into shock with it? But I mean to treat another human being in such a way, with such hatred, it’s beyond human; it’s beyond human anger, it’s beyond human cruelty, it’s taking it into a different realm. And so I always go through and I just, I’m just kind of dumbfounded. So I don’t really have a whole lot to say about it you know.
(M) Vicki, I would ask you to tell a word about Peter Loth, about his life if you would, because he’s an incredible man, and you’ve told me that a book is about to be coming out about his life. And I have been quite impacted by his life for two years, so I would love for you to tell.
(Vicki) Peter, as I mentioned earlier, was born in Stutthoff concentration camp, which is near Leipsik, in the very northern part of Poland. And his mother had been incarcerated; actually by her own father who had become a Nazi at the time that Hitler came to power. And her mother was Jewish. And so her brother was forced to go into the S.S. and the daughter and mother were sent to concentration camps. Peters mother was three months pregnant with him when she went to the concentration camp. And it was a horrible place there, especially for women; a lot of experimentation on women and so forth in that camp. So at the time the Russians began coming in from the east, they were moving the women from Stutthoff, I believe to Aushwitz actually. And on the train ride out, German tanks or something blew up the track and the cars were exploding, and the women were able to run away. And Peter’s mother handed him off to a Polish woman literally standing around the wreckage of what was going on, and said. She knew she could not live and carry him with her, and so she gave Peter to this woman and said here are his papers, I’ll be back for him and ran. Well he was raised by this woman on and off; she was always there for him but because his papers showed that he was Jewish, he would be taken by the Russians who had, were now occupying Poland, put into a orphanage where he was physically and sexually abused as a child. Then apparently the woman who was caring for him as a mother, and who he believed was his mother, her brother worked as a policeman, and could occasionally get him out and bring him back to his mother, his ‘Matka’ is what he called her. One day he, they came to get him, and they were hearing pop, pop-pop, guns going off, and as they rounded a corner they literally had the children there and were picking them up, literally just bodily picking them up and putting a pistol to their head and shooting them. And as he got there.
(M) The Polish or the Russians?
(Vicki) The Russians, yes, who had occupied Poland at that time. And so to save him, ‘Matka’ offered them herself, physically to an officer there and so he would not be killed. And when he was, I want to say thirteen, fourteen, letters started coming from the American zone, from Berlin, which made the Russian KGB think he was some kind of spy. He was actually arrested and beaten up by the KGB at fourteen, saying who do you know in the American sector after you, who do you know, who do you know, who do you know? And he said I don’t know anybody in the American sector. But it turned out it was actually his mother, trying to reach him. And so making a very, very long story short, this Matka took him and he said I’m not gonna go to her, I hate her, she left me. And Matka took him to checkpoint Charley, actually, and he thought she was coming with him but she couldn’t get a visa. And so literally she took him to checkpoint Charlie and he went across into the American zone and she was left behind. So he met, of course he did not, couldn’t stand his mother. He spoke only Polish and a little bit of Russian, she spoke German and English, so they could not even communicate with one another when they met. She had actually married an Afro-American G.I., and he had two stepsisters by the time they got back together. But their first meeting all they could really do was just cry. And his mother just undid her blouse literally and showed him her body because she had been experimented on. And when her saw that, then he understood and knew why she had not, couldn’t keep him at that time and so forth. And she was saying I love you, I love you, I love you, I’ve never forgotten, and so they embraced and. Course he was considered, he was now in Germany, West Germany at that time, he was considered dumb and Polish, and all of those kinds of things, by the Germans. So he still was not being accepted. And so they moved. Now understand, Mom is married to a black G.I., and two sisters, beautiful girls, and they move to Georgia, there to camp Benning I think. I don’t remember exactly where. And he said, the way he puts it is I got introduced to the Ku Klux Klan. And so he gets to America thinking oh the Land of Promise, and money grows on trees, and everything is gonna be glorious, and it’s not again at all. He’s beaten up again because of his black sisters, his sisters who are black and white; and it was just constant. And so the stepfather began abusing the sisters and he tried to stand up to him, and apparently the man came after him, and so he had to leave. He ran away from home and has a story of, you know, joining the army and being in Vietnam and it just goes on and on and on. Until when, Val and he, Val is his wife, and they were in south Florida, in Miami, and I guess they were going to a Catholic, charismatic Catholic church, if I’m not mistaken. And the Lord literally encountered him in a garden on a retreat, and began to show him what, he began to remember what had happened. And the Lord began telling him you have to go back. And he had no desire to go back, and this big argument. And what ended up happening is, he had never been in touch with his sisters since he ran away at I don’t know, seventeen maybe or something. And one of them called one day and had found him. And so they got reunited, but his mother had unfortunately had already passed away. But her dying wish was that he would bring her ashes back to, and sprinkle them on the ground at Stutthoff; which he did not have any desire to go back to Stutthoff and do. So I think he did a little running from the Lord until the Lord convinced him he needed to do that. Ah and so when he went back and entered the camp and began looking through some of the exhibits there, similar to what we’ve just seen here at Mauthausen, the Lord was telling him you need to forgive, you need to get down on your knees. And he said the room literally started spinning, the Spirit of God was so, but he did it. And when he rose up he just really felt released, completely free, free of the anger, free of so much. Yeah, and so his testimony has been from that time, and the Lord has used him greatly here and in Austria, in Switzerland, and in Germany, to come and share his testimony; and he says if I can forgive what’s your excuse? I mean look at my life, and if you can top that and still say, you know, I don’t want to forgive, then uhmm. But I don’t know anyone’s story really who beats this one. There have been, I’ve been in meetings with him and prayed with people who, you know grandparents were Nazi’s or S.S. and you know, they’ve never been able to forgive them or have release in their life. I remember Peter even telling the story in Germany of a man who had been an S.S. officer. He was probably eighty some years old, and he and his wife came up for prayer. And he asked Peter for forgiveness, and just laughed and literally just ran around the room; ran out of the building; I mean they thought he was going to get run over by a car or something, he was so. His wife said I have not seen him smile in fifty years. He had been so trapped in unforgiveness and not having a way to ask forgiveness for what had happened and what he’d been a part of. And so it has been I believe something the Lord has been using very much in this nation, and surrounding nations, to set people free through forgiveness.
(J) So that makes it quite amazing that that’s the word that when we came, we were bringing that “Forgive, Forgive” word. We were not only doing it for this area, but it was for the Eastern European.
(Vicki) All I was gonna just add is, Peter has as I mentioned that part of the testimony too, of the cruelty of the Russians that had come in. And uhm, people may not realize Vienna is only an hour from the Hungarian border, an hour from the Czech border, it’s very close to Eastern Europe. And again, I have ministered in different settings in prayer with women whose mothers were abused when the Russians came in, and things like that. Again, it is about forgiveness, and I know that when you brought that word when you were here for the conferences and you were a little uncertain, but I have no doubt that that was exactly what the Lords intent was. Because it is, we’ve talked about that ministry of forgiveness and asking for that and yeah it was very powerful.
(M) This makes me think I know nothing about forgiveness, (laughter) my little sphere. But I remember I was real sick in Slovakia when I delivered that message, but I had a determination that I would not leave there without giving that message. And they told me at the time it would be broadcast, I think you told me Vicki that it would be broadcast and repeated all over Eastern Europe. And it really didn’t register with me at that time, but ah that’s incredible. Well we have more to talk about with Vicki, and we will, we want to know more about her life and ministry because I want, I want to show another side of mission work. And open the window to Eastern Europe through Vicki, to see what God is doing.