Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
September 10, 1953

Journeys In Switzerland, Germany, Belgium, And Luxembourg

J. T. Marlin, Sweetwater, Texas

The little country of Switzerland is high in Europe's Alps. It is a land of beautiful scenery, towering white mountains, green valleys, and blue glimmering lakes. All of these we could behold from the train window as we journeyed in the direction of Lucerne. Lucerne has a population of 54,716. It is located on beautiful Lake Lucerne. Our hotel was the Montana overlooking this beautiful lake. It is needless to say that we enjoyed a real treat in Swiss foods after having been in the Near East. While here we took the Rack Pinion railway for four miles up the mountain which carried us to the snow-covered top of the Pilatus Kulm. After our group had purchased 42 Swiss watches and clocks, we took an evening train with sleeping accommodations for Frankfurt, Germany where we arrived at 7:50 a.m., July 9th. At the station we were met by Brother Otis Gatewood. After a most enjoyable breakfast in an American PX, Brother and Sister Gatewood and Brother Lloyd Collier took us to visit the four church buildings and the school in Frankfurt. Brother Perry Cotham and the writer addressed the students in chapel. At this service Brother Gatewood stated that in this school they taught only religious subjects, and for secular work students had to go to the Frankfurt University near by. Since we were only in Frankfurt a little more than 5 hours, we did not get to see as much of the work as we would have liked. There are more than 20 congregations scattered throughout Germany. After a pleasant visit and lunch, the Gatewoods and Brother Collier conducted us to our train where we began our journey for Verviers, Belgium, via Cologne. As we rode alongside the great Rhine River for many miles, we thought of so many things that we had read about this stream during World War II. About 10:00 in the evening we arrived in Verviers, where we made our headquarters at the Grand Hotel. After our evening meal, we went to the home of Brother and Sister S. F. Timmerman where we found Brother and Sister Hilton Terry, formerly of Fort Worth, now laboring in the gospel with the Timmermans in Verviers. They had prepared a table of Belgian desserts. At this midnight hour I doubt seriously if some of us were as tempered as we should have been. Early the next morning brethren Timmerman and Terry came to our hotel with their cars ready to take us on a tour through where the Battle of the Bulge was fought and Luxembourg. In the past so many important battles have been fought in Belgium that it has been called the "cockpit of Europe." Our first stop was at Malmedy, Belgium where the Germans in cold blood shot 84 American soldiers on December 17, 1944 and left them dying on the snow-covered ground. Here a monument has been erected. Old glory waved in the gentle breeze while below were plaques recording names of the dead. Driving on through the beautiful countryside, which is farmed by the big Belgian horses, we crossed over into the country of Luxembourg. It has an area of 999 square miles and a population of 290,992. Thirty seven percent of the people are engaged in agricultural efforts. The city of Luxembourg has a population of 57,740. It was most interesting to drive along by the edge of the River Our and look across on the other bank which was Germany. There were blown-up pillboxes every few hundred yards. We stopped at Clervaux and visited the old castle, which was one occupied by the Delano — ancestors of Franklin Delano Roosevelt. Our next stop was for lunch at the Hotel Leondary in Viander, which at one time was occupied by Victor Hugo. Then we journeyed on into Luxembourg City and returned to Belgium by another route which gave us a wonderful view of this little country. Before nightfall we came back into the very heart of the Battle of the Bulge to the little town of Bastogne, which numbers a population of a few less than 6,000. This town was almost completely destroyed in the battle. It has been rebuilt. The first thing we saw was a General Sherman tank on main street. Then we drove to a little high point outside the city where stands a monument in memory of those who fought and died there. 'The names of all the states in the United States represented have been carved on his monument. As the shadows of night were gently creeping over us, we made our way back to Verviers. There are congregations in Verviers, Penster, Leige and at present Brother Don Earwood is in Brussels hoping soon to establish a congregation there. These brethren have made progress in the Lord's work and in a country that is exceedingly difficult. We are very grateful to the Timmermans and the Terrys for their royal hospitality to us. Early on the morning of July 11th, we took our train for Amsterdam, Holland.