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Karol Kulisz - revivalist, charity worker and martyr


Karol KuliszKarol Kulisz (1873-1940) was Lutheran pastor, one of the leaders of neo-pietistic revival in Teschen Silesia in the beginning of the 20th century, founder of charitable institutions and martyr of the German nazi regime.

Kulisz studied theology in Vienna and Erlangen. During the studies he experienced the conversion. He was active in YMCA movement too. After studies he worked as pastor in the small village Komorní Lhotka (Ligotka Kameralna) in Teschen Silesia since 1899.

He was in touch with German revivalists and cooperated with Mission for the South-East Europe. In 1905 he attended Keswick convention. In 1905 Kulisz became one of key figures of the neo-pietistic revival in Teschen Silesia. He wrote tract What do we want? in which he described theological base and goals of the revival and the role of revivalist groups within the Lutheran church in Teschen Silesia. Kulisz organized convention of revival leaders in Komorní Lhotka in June 1905. There were present Friedrich W. Baedeker, Eva von Thiele-Winckler, Kristína Royová and others.

In 1909 Kulisz started his first charitable institution in Komorní Lhotka. Kulisz was active in student movement too. In cooperation with Robert Wilder he founded the conference centre in the villa near the Komorní Lhotka in the Beskids. There was Canadian William John Rose among lecturers, who spent the time of World Word I in Komorní Lhotka and became later an eminent slavist. In 1914 Kulisz was elected pastor of Jesus Church congregation in Teschen, but Supreme Church Council in Vienna failed to confirm him untill 1918, when it ceased to exist. Kulisz was installed by Polish superintendent Bursche from Warsaw in 1920.Memorial plaque of Kulisz in Jesus Church

Kulisz was elected senior of Lutheran congregations in the Polish part of Teschen Silesia in 1920. He started charitable institutions Eben-Ezer in Dzięgielów in the same year.

In 1939 Germany annexed Teschen Silesia, Kulisz as prominent Polish personality was arrested and he ended up in concentration camp in Buchenwald. He succumbed in May 1940 there.



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