By Gordon Govier

From IFES to Parliament

“One never knows when you’re teaching Bible study skills around the world, how that’s going to affect history,” said Bob Grahmann, as the International Fellowship of Evangelical Students World Assembly in Krakow, Poland, neared its end.

Bob is the director of InterVarsity’s Link ministry, which sends InterVarsity staff and graduates to other countries to work in student ministry with IFES affiliates. Bob and his wife Patricia

 lived in Kiev, Ukraine, for many years, training IFES staff to lead Bible studies.
At the World Assembly a meeting was held of pioneers who established the IFES groups in Eastern Europe after the fall of the Iron Curtain. Poland was the first to affiliate with the IFES, 20 years ago.
One of the speakers was John Godson, a Nigerian native who is now a naturalized Polish citizen and was elected to the Polish Parliament. As John shared his life story, Bob was surprised to hear him say,  “I’d like to thank Bob Grahman for his influence on my life.”
“I was shocked,” Bob said. “I didn’t remember affecting the life of a Polish Parliamentarian.”
But Bob had led an IFES Bible training seminar in Nigeria 20 years ago, which John attended. John was inspired to follow God’s call to the recently-opened mission field of Eastern Europe. He came to Poland in 1993 and worked with IFES until 1998.
In 2003 John followed a call to enter politics and was elected to the Polish Parliament in 2010. As Andy Shudall reported in his live blog from the World Assembly, John told the delegates, “Wherever you are, God wants to use you; it is not about position but it is about availability.”

Sunday, the day John spoke to the delegates, was Student Day at the World Assembly (see video above.)
Click here to listen to Bob Grahmann’s audio report from World Assembly.
 

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